Fuel shortages - Competition in the oil market is expected to go a notch higher with the entry of storage firm VTTI Kenya into the industry.VTTI Kenya general manager Merlin Figueira said the company will ensure fuel shortages are reduced translating into stable prices. The new terminal will also ease the region's overstretched oil storage and transportation challenges.
Figueira said the Sh5 billion investment has a capacity of 110,000 cubic meters, making it one of the largest liquid petroleum storage facilities in East Africa.
'The new terminal will offer much needed additional storage for all oil marketing companies in Mombasa and facilitate the distribution of fuels to different markets,' said Figueira.
The company successfully commissioned the new terminal by discharging 9,600 cubic meters of automotive gas oil from MT Uzava for its customer Vivo Energy Kenya Limited.
'The receipt of the first product from MT Uzava represents a significant milestone for our VTTI Kenya terminal, a major new landmark on the energy landscape of Kenya,' said Figueira.
Figueira also added that the company will be supplying oil products to as far as Kisumu and Eldoret with connected pipeline to the Kenya Pipeline Company's mainline from Mombasa to Nairobi.
'The added capacity will not only help to serve the increased demands in Kenya but the demands of our neighbors such as Uganda, Rwanda, Southern Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo,' he added.
The capacity will boost the national storage at Kipevu that has a storage capacity of 326 million litres while its operational capacity is 269 million litres with 58 million litres for petrol and 108 million and 103 million litres of diesel and dual-purpose kerosene respectively.
Investment in the terminal is part of the company's African expansion plans, in addition to their LPG terminal.
Phase one of the project, which included 6 tanks, was completed in March 2012 while phase two of the new oil terminal, which included 4 more tanks, was completed at the end of 2012.
By Wesonga Ochieng