ALP Law Series

Local Content in Uganda’s Oil and Gas Legal Framework

By ALP Advocate
June 25, 2021

Uganda has been described by the oil industry press as Africa’s ‘hottest exploitation frontier’. Accordingly, Uganda’s Albertine Graben is estimated to hold more than 6 billion barrels of oil, placing Uganda among the foremost African oil producers. The discovery and eventual exploitation of this oil resource is one of those once-in-a generation events that can transform the country not only on a macro level but also in the individual lives of Ugandan citizens.

Article No 3/2020 of the ALP Law Review Series addresses the place of the principle or concept of ‘local content’ in Uganda’s oil and gas policy and legal framework. The article prefaces a review of the policy and legal framework by underscoring the challenges oil and gas resources can have for a country in situation where there is lack of skills and involvement on part of nationals in the extraction of such resources. The article explores the essence of ‘local content’ in the global oil and gas industry and contextualizes it to Uganda in respect of its 2008 National Oil and Gas Policy, the 2013 upstream and downstream petroleum legislation and, for their specificity, the 2016 regulations on ‘national content’ (enacted to give effect to the provisions of the 2013 legislation). The general overview of the policy and legal framework reflects the desire to support national participation and development of expertise in terms of ‘provision of goods and services’ by local business entities and a ‘necessary workforce’ of Ugandan citizenry. The article queries whether ‘protectionism’, as underlies local content prescriptions in the oil and gas sector, has remained an unrealized policy objective on part of the government. The concern is a notable lack of implementation of the existing policies, laws and regulations and, in closing, the article offers a range of recommendations as regards what more can be done to actualize the development of local skills and use local resources.

The detailed Article No 3/2020 is available for download as a PDF file here.


No information contained in this alert should be construed as legal advice from ALP East Africa or ALP Advocates or the individual authors, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter.

For additional information in relation to this ALP Law Series, please contact;

  • Rebecca Muheki

            Associate, Corporate & Commercial Department