Editor’s Note: This report recaps the East Africa Regional Forum on oil and gas management for inclusive and sustainable development in Africa held on January 23-24, 2013, and jointly organized by the Economic Policy Research Centre, the Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and the Africa Growth Initiative.
Recent discoveries of commercially viable deposits of oil and gas in Uganda and Kenya, as well as ongoing efforts to improve and make oil production in South Sudan more efficient, have brought to the fore the need to revisit national policies for the exploration and exploitation of oil and gas reserves and the allocation of the revenues obtained from such activities. Informed discussions based on research and evidence on how best to efficiently and effectively manage East Africa’s natural resources are of critical importance at this stage of the development of these resources.
Thus, in order to deliberate on and critically explore these issues, leading policy think tanks in East Africa—the Economic Policy Research Centre (EPRC), Uganda; Kenya Institute for Public Policy and Analysis (KIPPRA); and Centre for Strategic Analyses and Research (C-SAR), South Sudan—in collaboration with the Africa Growth Initiative (AGI) at the Brookings Institution, Washington, D.C., organized the two-day Forum on the Management of Oil and Gas Resources for Inclusive and Sustainable Development in Africa. The forum brought together 114 delegates from the East Africa region to deliberate on how to efficiently manage their oil and gas reserves.
The delegates engaged in rigorous debate about the exploration and exploitation of oil and gas, the efficient and equitable management of oil revenues and the management of the environment. Their particular focus was on how regional cooperation can enhance the efficient utilization of the region’s resources. In addition to sharing their experiences about managing an oil-based economy, they emphasized the importance of openness and transparency in the design and implementation of policies for the management of this nascent sector.