What you need to know:
- The East African Crude Oil Pipeline (Eacop) project has officially entered its construction phase with the arrival of the first 100 kilometres of pipes at the Dar es Salaam port.
Dar es Salaam. The East African Crude Oil Pipeline (Eacop) project coordinator has announced the arrival of the first 100 kilometres of pipes at the Dar es Salaam port, signalling the official start of the large-scale construction phase.
Speaking during the inspection of the pipes, the coordinator, Mr Safiel Msovu, from the Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC) confirmed the arrival and stated that construction was ready to begin.
He added that the project is on track and that both Tanzania and Uganda are committed to its completion.
Mr Msovu said that more than 5,000 pipes have arrived in the country for the construction of the project.
“The project is now set to begin its construction phase. The project is still ongoing, and both countries are ensuring that it is carried out as intended,” Mr Msovu said.
According to him, the Tanzanian government is still coordinating the project through TPDC, and up to this point, the organisation has issued shares to shareholders, releasing almost Sh500 billion for the project's execution.
“The recently delivered pipes have a maximum length of 100 kilometres. We have initiated the process of moving them from Dar es Salaam to Tabora, the project's centre, and from there they will be distributed to other project locations,” he said.
He added that work on installing the pipes will begin in April of the following year and that the project's development will be finished in its entirety by 2025.
“We anticipate that this project will formally start its operation of bringing oil from Uganda to this nation by the start of 2026,” he said.
On the other hand, the Ambassador of Uganda to Tanzania, Mr Fred Mwesigye, has said the move is a hope that brings light towards the completion of the vision of the leaders of the two countries.
“We are grateful that the project will now benefit the citizens involved. Our goal for being here is to complete it, thus this is the responsibility we wish to take on,” he said.
Mr Mwesiga added: "I thank every leader involved in this project for their efforts, patience and enthusiasm for showing the desire to make this happen.”
For his part, the operations manager of the project, Mr Stevan Miller, said that the transportation of pipes from Dar es Salaam to the various areas of the project will be done using special lorries that have been developed for the job.
“These lorries are 18-metre long, which is the length of the pipes that arrived in the country, and this makes them different from others that are usually 12 metres long,” Mr Miller said.
Mr Miller has said that the drivers of the trucks have been given special training aimed at road safety exercises, emergency response, travel planning, and compliance with road regulations.
“We also use modern technology to lift these pipes, which uses air compression, and technology can ensure that workers do not reach dangerous areas when lifting pipes,” he said.