Nairobi, Kenya - Kenya has struck a new oil and gas in Lamu, an ancient town near the border with Somalia, but warns the discovery is of non-commercial quantities with greater potential.
Davies Chirchir, Kenya’s Energy Secretary, said on Friday that the discovery was made by British Gas, an independent United Kingdom-based exploration firm.
The latest discovery, though not commercial in quantities, is the first sign of success after a series of trials in Lamu, which has long been believed to have quantities of natural gas.
Australia’s Woodside Energy, one of the few firms to explore the Lamu basin, failed to strike oil after conducting some deep-sea exploration there in 2006/07.
Kenya recently struck more than half a billion barrels of oil in Turkana in a boost to ongoing exploration work which intensified since 2005, when Kenya announced a change of licensing policies for oil firms.
Although there were more than 30 unsuccessful attempts to drill wells which returned little or no oil, East Africa’s largest economy is proving a viable destination for successful oil and gas exploration.
Chirchir addressed the energy forum seeking views on how best to modernize oil and gas regulations.
The discovery was announced as President, Uhuru Kenyatta, met separately with the Founder and President of Tullow Oil, Aiden Heavey. Tullow Oil is responsible for the discovery of oil in Turkana.