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After TotalEnergies and its partners took a final investment decision on the Lake Albert oil project in Uganda earlier this year, the landlocked East African country is turning its attention to plans for a brand new 60,000 b/d refinery. The $10 billion upstream project — which includes a 1,445 km pipeline to the coast of neighboring Tanzania — is ambitious enough, with first oil planned in 2025 and production eventually rising to 230,000 b/d. But the plans to build a greenfield refinery — estimated to cost less than half of the upstream project — may well be even more challenging. Africa's legacy refineries have been struggling, with many closing because of a lack of private or government funding for costly upgrades to make cleaner fuels. But Rajakumari Jandhyala — the CEO of Washington-based Yaatra Ventures and the leading figure in the consortium selected by Uganda's government in 2018 to develop the new refinery — appears undaunted. "This will cross the finishing line because [it's] a regional energy transition and security project with development impact," she told told Energy Intelligence at a recent industry conference in Cape Town. In addition to Uganda, the planned refinery would supply other countries in the region, replacing imports of diesel, gasoline, jet fuel and liquefied petroleum gas.

Refining, Oil Products
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