A new upgraded petroleum pipeline designed to improve supply of fuel to the hinterlands and regional export destinations is 80 per cent complete and on course for commissioning mid this year, the Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC) has said.
KPC’s Managing Director Joe Sang said the Nairobi-Mombasa oil pipeline, which is scheduled for completion end of April, will enable the country fulfil its fuel demand, which is projected to be 6.8 billion litres by 2020.
KPC is replacing the existing Mombasa-Nairobi pipeline that has been in operation for 38 years.
A Vision 2030 flagship project, the construction of the 450km pipeline is hoped to ensure sustained, reliable and efficient transportation of petroleum products in the region and to meet demand in the next 30 years.
The pipeline will have an installed flow rate of 1 million litres per hour in Phase one.
The new line will enhance KPC’s pipeline decentralisation plan into the counties by increasing product availability in Nairobi that will feed into spur lines into Western Kenya, Central Kenya, Rift Valley and South Nyanza regions.
“It will also improve the reliability of fuel supply to the export market of Uganda, Rwanda and eastern Democratic Republic of Congo which in 2010 stood at 2.4 billion litres but has since risen to 3.5 billion litres in 2016,” said Mr Sang in a statement sent to newsrooms Thursday.
With a one million litres per hour flow rate, the line will remove an average of about 700 trucks from the road daily.
“This will enhance safety because pipeline transportation of fuel is the safest and most cost effective way of transporting petroleum products the world over. There will therefore be no tanker accidents, fuel fires, siphoning on our roads hence saving lives and conserving our environment,” he said.
The project contractor, Zakhem International, has begun installation works for the eight mainline pumps, which have arrived in the country.
Each of the line’s four stations —Maungu, Mtito Andei, Sultan Hamud and Changamwe— will have 2 mainline pumps each.