The inaugural shipment of the crude oil makes Kenya the first country in the region to become an oil exporting nation.
“I am proud to say Kenya’s grand march to oil and gas production and export has begun. The flagging-off of this maiden consignment represents a new dawn for Kenya; and the beginning of an era of greater prosperity for all Kenyans,” President Kenyatta said at Mombasa.
The consignment of 200,000 barrels of low sulphur crude from Kenya's oil fields in Turkana County, bought by United Kingdom based ChemChina UK, is worth Sh1.2 billion ($120 million), a price much higher than what was initially projected.
Kenya is using this initial export to test the global market before it embarks on large scale commercial production of its oil.
Kenya’s Early Oil Pilot Scheme (EOPS) commenced in June 2018 marking the beginning of the journey towards full development of Kenya’s oil and gas resources.
At the same event, President Kenyatta also congratulated 136 Kenyans who have gained employment as seafarers on several ships owned by the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC).
The 136 seafarers are part of a contingent of 275 Kenyans who have so far gained employment as part of ongoing government efforts to position the blue economy sector as a key economic driver.