Botswana Oil Limited (BOL), a government company plans to set up mobile filling stations, beginning with five, in remote places that are currently not being serviced by big companies, an official has said.BOL business development manager, Bruce Buno told delegates at an Oil Industry workshop in Gaborone that plans to roll out the pilot project were mooted after realising that remote places were not being serviced by international oil companies.
“We are looking at establishing mobile filling stations, which can be moved from place to place. We are going to start with five which we will take to the most remote or rural areas,” said Buno adding that the stations will be set up in consultation with environment authorities. He said giant fuel companies operating in the country namely Puma, Shell and Total, have not expanded their operations to most of the rural areas on viability grounds.
As a result, communities in these areas bear the brunt of walking long distances to access petroleum. The concept of mobile filling stations is new in the country but has been adopted in other countries. Buno said the role of Botswana Oil is to make sure there is no shortage of fuel and every corner in the county is adequately stocked.
BOL was established in 2013 to support the government to ensure the security and efficiency of fuel supply to Botswana and promote active citizen involvement in the petroleum industry.Buno also said they assist citizen emerging companies in the petroleum sector to participate meaningfully in the industry.
“However, we have seen several people coming to us asking for finance but unfortunately, we don’t offer funds as this is the responsibility of Citizen Entrepreneurial Development Agency and other financial institutions,’ said Buno. He said that BOL also does not build filling stations for people but rather supplies them with fuel.