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East Africa's engagement of oil firms boosting discoveries

Staff writer ▼ | October 27, 2014
East African governments' efforts to engage major oil companies which are fully equipped to deploy modern and versatile petroleum exploration technologies is boosting oil and gas discoveries, a Kenyan official said.
Kenya oil
Oil industry   Martin Heya during an oil and gas forum:
Ministry of Energy and Petroleum Commissioner for Petroleum Martin Heya told an oil and gas forum in Nairobi that the use of Full Tensor Gradionometry (FTG) and 3D seismic surveys that increase the precision of targeting of subsurface structures that trap hydrocarbons is turning the region into a major hydrocarbon production area.

"Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Ethiopia Somalia and Mozambique have all benefited from advanced technologies," Heya said during the Third East Africa Upstream Summit.

"The region is also developing local technical experts who can monitor oil and gas contractor operations as well as verify exploration results as projects progress," he said.

However, he said the region has to overcome the lack of oil and gas infrastructure that could affect revenues. "A significant mismatch between the pace of discovery and implementation of corresponding infrastructure projects could pose a challenge in monetizing the discoveries."

Kenya has drilled a total of 69 wells since oil exploration efforts began with encouraging discoveries in three basins. So far, 12 of the wells are discovery wells, with nine containing crude oil and two holding natural, while the Anza Basin contains both oil and gas. The country's estimated crude oil reserves is about one billion barrels.