KAMPALA, Uganda, Sept. 18 (UPI) -- An energy official in Uganda said recent discoveries of oil in the country led authorities to revise the reserve estimate to at least 3.5 billion barrels.
Ernest Rubondo, director of Uganda's petroleum production and exploration department, told the national Chamber of Commerce that oil fields in his country were showing higher levels of productivity when compared to surrounding regions.
"From about two or three wells we have increased our oil barrels to 3.5 billion," he was quoted by Ugandan newspaper the Daily Monitor as saying.
Uganda is eager to exploit resources tied to the Lake Albert region, which was estimated originally to hold as much as 2.5 billion barrels of oil. Frontier energy companies like Tullow Oil aim to start developing Ugandan oil fields within three years.
The government, the newspaper adds, is expected to have a licensing round for the rights to explore more acreage in the country and pass new oil laws by the end of the year.
"Thus far, $1.5 billion is the amount that has been spent in all the activities leading to the 3.5 billion barrels discovery," added Rubondo.