Finance Minister Matia Kasaija and the Norwegian Ambassador, Susan Eckey have signed a five year grant agreement for strengthening the management of the Oil and Gas sector in Uganda – phase 3 between the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Government of Uganda.
The signing ceremony of the grant agreement worth NOK 107 million (approx. SD 12.5 million) took place on Wednesday at the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED).The Minister of Finance, on behalf of the Ugandan Government conveyed sincere appreciation for the Norwegian Government’s financial and technical assistance since 2006.
“The oil development program has been very important in institutional development for the sustainable management of our petroleum resources, particularly in areas of capacity development of the relevant institutions and facilitation of the necessary legal frameworks,” said Kasaija.
The Norwegian Government in 2015 launched a major initiative to take the lead in global efforts to improve transparency and accountability over the management of revenues from oil, gas and mining industries.
Norway decided to increase funding and technical expertise for developing countries to assist with natural resource revenue management.
ChimpReports now understands funding under the previous two phases of the programme supported the development of the oil revenue management policy which contributed to the oil revenue management sections of the Public Financial Management Act (2015).
The program has also supported the development of the petroleum revenue investment policy and petroleum tax manual which will be used to identify and harmonize activities in the petroleum sector for taxation in Uganda.
Kasaija said the transition from exploration to development and production brings a different set of challenges requiring continued support.
“We intend to utilize this program as a country to support placement of the necessary legal and institutional frameworks to manage the sector before we receive the first oil,” said the Finance Minister.
He said oil development and production cannot be rushed and the Country has to be extremely careful to avoid mistakes that could deny Ugandans the benefits from oil.
The Norwegian Ambassador said the Oil for Development Programme (OfD) is designed to assist developing countries in building capacity to manage their petroleum resources in a sustainable manner.
“OfD remains a key priority in Norway’s engagement with Uganda, as part of our strategic goals of promoting sustainable management of natural resources and good governance,” said the Ambassador.
The Permanent Secretary Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, Robert Kasande, said cooperation between the Government of Uganda and Norway has tremendously contributed to the development of oil and gas sector particularly in aspects of human resource and institutional development.