Oil and gas laws in Uganda: A legislators' guide

This guide sets out the main provisions of the proposed regulatory framework on oil and how these differ from existing provisions.

The current phase of oil exploration in Uganda offers a unique and exciting chance to alleviate poverty and create broad-based development and improved standards of living across the country.

At the same time, many Ugandans are well aware that much has been written and discussed about the “resource curse”.

In July 2010 International Alert, which has been operating in Uganda since 2007, together with the Greater North Parliamentary Forum, convened around 40 MPs to dialogue with central government, as well as oil companies and civil society, about current developments in the sector. As discussion turned to the anticipated new legislative framework, Alert was requested by participants to commission a simplified guide for legislators setting out the main provisions of the proposed framework, and how these differ from existing provisions.

This guide is our response to that recommendation. Written by a lawyer with particular expertise on oil and gas developments in Uganda, the guide has been reviewed by a number of parliamentarians and civil society organisations, as well as other experts. Given that Uganda’s new oil and gas legislation is expected to be presented in the first session of the 9th parliament, following the 2011 parliamentary elections, it is our hope that this publication will serve as a helpful tool for incoming legislators as well as incumbents, as they take up their historic task of developing Uganda’s regulatory framework for its nascent oil industry.