Republic of Kenya

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The Republic of Kenya is bisected by the Equator and East longitude 38o. It borders the Indian Ocean to the southeast, Somalia to the East, Ethiopia to the North, South Sudan to the Northwest, Uganda to the West, and Tanzania to the south. From the coastal margin, the low plains ascend to the central highlands.

The Kenyan highlands comprise successful agricultural regions with climatic conditions varying from tropical along the coast to temperate inland to arid in the north and northeastern regions. It covers an area of approximately 582,646 km2 with a population of over 45 million people. The country's real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 5.9% in 2023 compared to 4.3% in 2022. The major sectors contributing to the GDP growth are agriculture, tourism, manufacturing, transport, communication, and fishing among others.

Kenya is endowed with diverse wildlife and thus a considerable acreage of land has been devoted to wildlife conservation habitats. These habitats include the famous Maasai Mara and Tsavo National Parks. All the Big Five animals of Africa are found within these habitats.

Regionally, the East African Rift system bisects Kenya in a North-South direction with the drainage patterns being a function of the surface relief manifestation.

 

Location map of Kenya
Location map of Kenya


Generally, most rivers drain into the Indian Ocean, Lake Victoria and Lake Turkana.

Kenya has four (4) sedimentary basins namely: Lamu, Anza, Mandera and Tertiary Rift covering an area of approximately 500,000 km2. Exploration started in Kenya in the 1950s. The sedimentary basins are subdivided into sixty-three (63) petroleum exploration blocks out of which twelve (12) are licensed to four (4) oil companies. Fifty-one (51) blocks are open for licensing to investors for oil and gas exploration.

 

 

Current Activities


Upstream Oil and Gas activities


Currently, exploration activities are ongoing both in the onshore and offshore blocks. To date, over 80,000-line km of 2D seismic data and approximately 10,000km2 of 3D seismic data has been acquired across the various blocks. A total of 94 wells have been drilled- most being exploratory wells with a few being appraisal wells. Tullow Oil B.V made commercial discoveries in Block 10BB and 13T in the South Lokichar Sub-Basin of Tertiary Rift Basin. Field Development Plan to develop resources in the South Lokichar Basin has been submitted to Energy and Petroleum Regulatory (EPRA) and is currently under review. Other oil and gas discoveries made includes; gas discovery in offshore Lamu Basin in Block L8 drilled by Apache; and Oil and gas discovery in Block L10A drilled by BG Group and gas discoveries in Block 9 in Anza Basin.


 

Petroleum Exploration Block Map
Petroleum Exploration Block Map

 

The Ministry plans to contract a Company to undertake a 3D Seismic Multi-Client data acquisition program for shallow offshore in the near future. The company will carry out two seismic projects; one covers new 3D acquisition in the offshore Lamu Basin, the second involves the re- imaging of vintage data. The company will carry out the multi-client work on the north and south of the Basin.

The Ministry is also repacking data in the most prospective blocks that have gas discoveries with an aim of marketing them to potential investors.

 

Midstream activities

 

To support the South Lokichar development, the Government of Kenya (GOK) is seeking investments for the development of the Lokichar to Lamu Crude Oil Pipeline (LLCOP) project that will follow the LAPSET corridor. LLCOP will transport stabilised crude oil from the Lokichar Central Processing Facility (CPF) to the Lamu port, Kenya. The proposed 24’’ pipeline is designed for a flow rate of 130 kbopd. The project is at the project development stage (Pre-FID stage). Front End Engineering Design (FEED) was completed; however, it has been updated with respect to the revised development concept. ESIA was completed and approved by NEMA. Conversations on the pipeline are being carried out alongside the South Lokichar Basin FDP.

 

 


Petroleum Exploration Block Map 

 

 

Downstream Activities


Importation of Petroleum Products


After the refinery ceased operation in September 2013 upon the country resorted to meeting its fuel requirements through 100% import of refined petroleum products, the country was importing its products through an open tender system framework until April 2023 when the importation of the products shifted to Government-to-Government Arrangement. In the Master Framework Agreement, the Government of Kenya imports fuel on credit basis for a duration of 6 months and payment is made using local currency. This enabled the Government to avert fuel and dollar shortage crises.

The products are imported through Kipevu Oil Terminal (KOT 1 and 2). Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and Heavy Fuel Oil are imported privately and through other jetties i.e. Shimanzi Oil Terminal and AGOL.

 

Uptake of Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG)

 

Mwananchi Gas Project: LPG Distribution

 

The Government of Kenya through the Ministry of Energy & Petroleum (MOEP) seeks to convert 4.4million households to use LPG as the primary cooking fuel by 2030 through access to affordable LPG and cylinders. This will enable the Government to achieve The Medium-Term Plan II under vision 2030 of 15 kilograms (kg) per capita of LPG consumption in Kenya by 2030 from the current 6.5 kg per capita.

As part of the journey to achieve this the Government has initiated a project dubbed, ‘The Mwananchi Gas Project”. This is an initiative by the Ministry whose objectives are: -
i. To enhance LPG penetration in the country
ii. To facilitate access of LPG to low- income households.
iii. Scale-up uptake of LPG from 10% to 70%
iv. Reduce use of biomass and kerosene as the primary source of household cooking fuels

The plan is to distribute subsidized 6 kg LPG cylinder and accessories to about 4.4 million households by 2028. Rollout to begun in 2024.

 

Clean Cooking for Learning institutions

 

In support of support government national Tree Growing Restoration Campaign, the ministry endeavoured to enhancing use of clean cooking gas in households and public institutions. The Government through the ministry of energy and petroleum embarked on a journey to convert all public learning institutions to use LPG as the primary cooking fuel.
LPG Infrastructure Development

There exist two bulk import jetties (via vessels). The jetties include Shimanzi Oil Terminal (SOT) jetty that is connected to a total storage capacity of 2,700 tons and the other terminal privately owned is linked to African Gas and Oil Limited (AGOL) company located in Miritini with a total storage of 25,000 tons.

Construction of a bulk LPG storage facility at KPRL, Changamwe tank farm by Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC) is underway. The first phase includes 25,000 tons storage and a similar capacity in the second phase.

There are several other private investments ongoing with the most progressed one being Lake Gas Limited construction of an LPG bulk storage facility with a capacity of 10,000 metric tonnes. The facility will be complemented by a state-of-the-art, fully equipped LPG cylinders manufacturing facility with a capacity of producing at least 1,000 cylinders per hour. The project upon completion will enable manufacture and filling of LPG cylinders under one roof, thus minimizing supply chain inefficiencies while lowering the cost of cooking gas to the citizenry.

 

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11th East African Petroleum Conference & Exhibition 2025 (EAPCE'25).
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