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By UNOC Corporate Affairs

INDIGENOUS companies, mainly SMEs, will get contracts in the oil and gas sector, thanks to a partnership promoting local content. 

To prepare them for the lucrative opportunities in the oil and gas sector, they will undergo specially packaged training, capacity building and enabled to synergize.

Uganda National Oil Company Limited (UNOC) and Stanbic Bank Limited have partnered to make the SME’s desires a reality through the Business Incubator project.

To cement the partnership, the two companies have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU). The signing ceremony between UNOC CEO, Ms. Proscovia Nabbanja and counterpart, Patrick Mweheire, was witnessed by the media at the bank’s head office in Kampala on February 5th, 2020.

The project targets all SMEs countrywide and has centers in Gulu, Northern Uganda, Mbarara in Western Uganda and Hoima in Mid-Western. Hoima is close to the epicenter of the oil and gas activities. Plans are underway to open a center in Mbale.

Following the MOU signing, the two companies reiterated their commitment to local content and development of SMEs.  Local content refers to participation of indigenous people and companies in provision of services and goods to the sector.

“We are pleased to be partnering with UNOC in this critical initiative that aims to facilitate participation and development of national content in the oil and gas sector. Oil is a game-changer in many economies and the only way we can benefit as Ugandans is if we have as many local companies participating as possible,” stated Mweheire.  

The UNOC CEO said that the institution would offer “capabilities”, which would boost the beneficiaries’ potential to participate and benefit from the sector.  

“Partnerships with institutions like Stanbic are instrumental in promoting national content through providing training and information on the opportunities for local businesses in the oil and gas sector,” she stated.

“UNOC will provide subject matter experts to support the development of businesses on the Enterprise Development programme and also provide support to the Stanbic Business Incubator Centre’s training and research activities in Enterprise Development.”

In conformity with the local content, she stressed, the law ring-fenced for Ugandans provision of certain services and goods. This, thus, improves opportunities for Ugandan companies to participate in the sector. Uganda’s confirmed petroleum resource, situated in the Albertine Graben, is estimated at 6.5bn barrels. Of these, 1.4-1.7bn barrels are recoverable and await the final investment (FID) decision before development and production.  It is estimated that about US$16bn will be invested in the sector during this phase. END