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Vol 51 No 23

Published 19th November 2010


Oil to play for

More than a billion barrels of oil under Lake Albert may help transform the country’s economy but will not determine outcome of the 2011 elections

The tussle between the government and the oil companies wanting to exploit Lake Albert’s oil fields has hit deadlock over US$404 million which the government says is owed in capital gains tax. It is almost a year since Heritage Oil, owned by ex-military entrepreneur Tony Buckingham (AC Vol 45 No 5), sold its licences for $1.3 billion to its erstwhile partner, Tullow Oil plc (AC Vol 51 No 14). The failure to ensure that Heritage had a contractual obligation to pay the tax exposes serious shortcomings in the government’s negotiations with international companies.

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