, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 20 – French petroleum giant Total Group has now made a comeback into oil exploration in Kenya, with the acquisition of 40 percent rights in five blocks offshore, Lamu Basin.
Senior Vice President of the Total Group Momar Nguer says the blocks were previously being operated by Anardarko, a reputable Oil and Gas Company.
Nguer who is in-charge of refining and marketing in Africa and the Middle East, met with President Mwai Kibaki on Friday and briefed him on the company’s oil exploration progress in the country.
“Having failed to make commercial discovery in Kenya in the past, Total has come back after acquiring 40 percent rights in five blocks offshore, Lamu basin,” he said.
Nguer said Total is also in the process of acquiring 100 percent interests in one of the newly created eight deep water blocks offshore Lamu Basin.
He added that his company, whose presence in the country span over 50 years, has invested in supply infrastructure, a network of 170 service stations and employed many Kenyans.
The Total Group Vice-President added that the company had posted some of the Kenyan employees to other countries in a programme designed to give them international exposure and prepare them for senior responsibilities within the group.
President Kibaki assured the Total Group of companies and other investors of Government’s commitment to create an enabling environment to conduct business in the country.
The President commended the company for meeting its tax obligations, thus earning the Kenya Revenue Authority recognition as one of the major tax payers.
The meeting was attended by Energy Minister Kiraitu Murungi and Energy Permanent Secretary Patrick Nyoike among other senior Government officials.