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Kenya invites firms to audit northern block oil reserves

Oil exploration in northern Kenya. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Oil exploration in northern Kenya. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The government plans to audit the country’s oil and gas wealth in petroleum blocks where British explorer Tullow Oil and partner Africa Oil first struck oil in Lokichar in northwest Kenya in 2012.

The Ministry of Energy and Petroleum has invited consultants to undertake a hydrocarbon reserves audit for the assets in block 10BB and 13T.

Kenya said in a notice a week ago that the audit aims to assess the oil wealth to ensure sustainable management and investment.

Nairobi has often been urged by experts to put in place mechanism to promote accountability and transparency in the exploitation of its new found oil resources to avoid the ‘resource curse’.

The audit will be carried out under the Kenya petroleum technical assistance project bankrolled by the World Bank with the overall objective to “strengthen the capacity of the government to manage petroleum sector and accruing wealth for sustainable management.”

“The objective of the assignment is to undertake an audit of the hydrocarbon reserves covering the years 2012 to 2017 and to develop a responsible, unbiased and independent technical view captured in a competent persons report of the oil assets in block 10BB and 13,” said the ministry in the notice.

“This will support the Government of Kenya not only in the decision making about possible investment in the development of the oil discoveries, but also raising equity funds by the dual listing of the Kenyan state participating firm in London Stock Exchange (LSE) and Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE).

Africa Oil and Tullow were 50-50 partners in blocks 10 BB and 13T where Kenya’s first oil discoveries were made.