Drilling progresses at Tilenga and Kingfisher oil projects in Uganda

World Oil Staff July 27, 2023

(WO) – The drilling of production wells for the Kingfisher and Tilenga oil production projects is continuing since the launch in January 2023. This is in preparation for the planned commencement of oil production in Uganda in 2025.

The drilling of the first well for the Kingfisher field has been completed to a total depth of about 3,000 meters, and the LR8001 rig is now at the location for the second well. For the Tilenga project, the initial phase will see the drilling of 12 development wells on the Jobi-5 well pad, which is part of the Tilenga oil fields.

The Uganda oil project envisions drilling over 450 wells on 35 well-pads, leading to an estimated production of 230,000 bopd at its peak once production commences. Production from the multiple fields, including Kingfisher, Jobi Rii, Ngiri, Kasamene-Wahrindi, Gunya, Nsoga and Kigogole, will contribute to this substantial output.

Mr. Ernest Rubondo, Executive Director at the Petroleum Authority of Uganda, said, “The oil and gas activitie,s especially the development of infrastructure worth over $ 15 billion in the country before commencement of production, together with the expected annual revenues in excess of $ 1 billion, is beginning to significantly impact the country’s economy.”

Mr. Alex Nyombi, the Director of Development and Production at the Petroleum Authority of Uganda, said, “Three rigs have been designated for the drilling operations on the Tilenga project. Presently, SINOPEC 1501 is operational at the Jobi-5 well pad and commenced drilling operations on June 28, 2023. The second rig is undergoing final tests at the Ngiri 3 well-pad before commencing drilling, while the third rig is being assembled and is expected to commence operations in October 2023. For the Kingfisher Project, the LR8001 rig has been operational since January 2023. Both rigs have noise suppressing technology, are fully automated and environmentally friendly.”

Uganda's commitment to sustainable and responsible resource extraction is shown in the design of the drilling rigs. Employing innovative technologies and eco-conscious practices, the rigs are designed to minimize the environmental footprint, ensuring a positive impact on the ecosystem, and setting a precedent for future generations.

The proactive measures in scheduling the drilling operations will ensure at least 70 wells are in place by 2025, facilitating the projected commencement of commercial production. During the next 25 years, this development will provide a boost to investment in other sectors of the economy, bringing a potentially transformative impact for many Ugandans and the country at large.

To ensure the economic benefit from the project’s construction is spread widely, Uganda has set National Content Development targets. These mandate that at least 40% of the amount spent remains within the country’s economy through the use of Ugandan goods and services and by training Ugandans to undertake the work.

The government is also strengthening links between the new oil sector and existing parts of the economy, such as agriculture, tourism, manufacturing and education. As a result of the government’s initiatives, it is calculated there will be in total an $8 billion boost to local businesses during the four-year construction period.

Uganda’s oil projects are a collaborative effort between TotalEnergies EP Uganda B.V, CNOOC Uganda Limited, and the Ugandan government, with the key facilities for the project encompassing the Central Processing Facility, well pads, flowlines, lake water abstraction and other vital components.

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