Three more insurers rule out East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline

Insurance providers Argo Group and Axis Capital, both Lloyd’s of London members, and RSA Insurance Group Limited, a leading UK insurer, have informed the #StopEACOP coalition that they will not be involved in underwriting the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project.

The decision by the three firms brings to 11 the total number of (re)insurers who have committed not to provide insurance coverage for the EACOP project. This is significant because the project needs substantial levels of international (re)insurance to proceed. The firms cite the EACOP project’s potential impact on people, nature and climate as among the reasons for their refusal to underwrite the project.

“We are able to confirm that providing insurance for the EACOP project, its construction, contractors, infrastructure or operation is not within our risk appetite. Therefore, we have not and will not provide insurance services associated with this project.”

- Alex Hindson, Chief Risk & Sustainability Officer, Argo Group

RSA Insurance Group Limited officially communicated that “our underwriters follow our Climate Change and Low Carbon Policy, which means we would not provide cover to the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline.”

Axis Capital noted the insurance firm “​​…do[es] not support the East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline” and also confirmed that they “ not envisage supporting EACOP in the future,” in email correspondence with Coal Action Network.

The EACOP and the associated Tilenga and Kingfisher oil fields are faced with widespread resistance locally in Uganda and Tanzania and globally, with over 1 million people signing a global petition against the projects. The planned pipeline is displacing tens of thousands of households in Uganda and Tanzania.

“TotalEnergies insists on forging ahead with the EACOP project even in the face of substantial local and global opposition. The company downplays the negative impacts of the project while arguing that the project is good for Uganda’s economic development. The truth is that the project is only good for Total and its shareholders and not the frontline communities facing displacement and human rights violations that have harmed their livelihoods.  Financial institutions that are serious about protecting human rights and avoiding climate breakdown should rule out supporting the EACOP.”


- Diana Nabiruma of Africa Institute for Energy Governance (AFIEGO), Uganda

The EACOP, its associated upstream oil projects and related infrastructure such as roads, pose a threat to livelihoods, local cultures, sensitive ecosystems and wildlife, including endangered species in the Lake Victoria basin, Budongo forest, Murchison Falls National Park, Biharamulo Game Reserve and others.

The news comes against the backdrop of a worldwide concern that oil companies are making a killing by harming the environment and leaving communities where their projects exist languishing in poverty.

“As oil companies continue their operations in Africa, raking in huge profits, local communities are left to deal with the negative socio-economic and environmental impacts of these exploits. We welcome the move by Argo Group, Axis Capital and RSA not to offer (re)insurance coverage to the EACOP project, a project that not only comes at a huge cost to people, nature and climate but also jeopardizes key sectors that employ the majority of people in Uganda and Tanzania such as agriculture, tourism and fisheries. We call on other financial institutions that are yet to distance themselves from EACOP to do so and seal the fate of this harmful project.”

- Omar Elmawi, Coordinator of the #StopEACOP Coalition

These commitments illustrate the growing level of rejection of the project by international (re)insurers. EACOP can not proceed without international (re)insurance. RSA is a leading UK insurer, while Argo and Axis are members of Lloyd’s of London, the world's largest (re)insurance market. This adds to the pressure on the other Lloyd’s members and the wider insurance market also to reject EACOP. We also call on insurers as investors to proactively support renewable energy projects in Uganda, Tanzania and throughout Africa, where such projects are not in conflict with communities or ecosystems.

In addition to the 11 (re)insurers that have distanced themselves, 20 banks and 4 export credit agencies have committed not to provide project financing for the EACOP project.A recent report noted that the EACOP presents various violations of the IFC Performance Standards and Equator Principles in terms of both human rights and climate impacts.

Share now:

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Never miss an update! Sign up to our Newsletter


Hearing date set for proposed West Cumbria Coal mine

The legal challenges against the government’s approval of a new coal mine off the coast of Cumbria will be heard in London on the 16th to 18th July.

Support local campaign group resist Bedwas coal mine

Mining company, ERI Ltd, is applying to mine nearly half a million tonnes of coal from two coal tips dumped in Caerphilly, South Wales by the same mining industry last time it operated in the area.

Bedwas coal tips: Key facts and impacts

Mining company, ERI Ltd, is applying to mine nearly half a million tonnes of coal from two coal tips dumped in Caerphilly, South Wales, by the mining industry last time it operated in the area. It’s vital we stop this shameless attempt to exploit the mess left behind by the mining industry to justify yet more mining. If the coal tip mining were to go ahead, it would…

Ffos-y-fran opencast coal mine quietly becomes a massive reservoir

Coal Action Network’s drone footage on Monday 11th March raised the alarm bell about the rising water levels. With this footage, a local resident informed Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council of the rising water levels, only to be told…

Global Week of Action: Putting Insurance Industry in the Hot Seat

The insurance industry found itself in the spotlight last week as a Global Week of Action blossomed across the world. From February 27th to March 3rd 2024, a wave of protests, both online and in the streets, swept through the doors of insurance giants, demanding accountability over their support for polluters and decisive action on climate change.

Protesters walk with banner reading 'Insure Our Futures Not Polluters'

Success: Yet another major insurer rules out coal and oil projects

After a week of peaceful protest around the world, alongside hundreds of groups, our efforts have paid off. Yet another leading insurance company, Probitas, has ruled out insuring the proposed West Cumbria coal mine and the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP).

Bedwas coal tip: a new frontier for coal in South Wales?

‘Energy Recovery Investments Ltd’ is proprosing to extract the coal from 3 large coal tips in Bedwas, Caerphilly, South Wales. The company claims that it would use some of the sales of the coal to restore those coal tips later. The coal tips lie above a coal seam, which the company claims it would coincidentally have to dig into to create ‘lagoons’ for processing the coal from the coal tips…

Charges dropped for activists blocking Ffos-y-fran coal mine

The Crown Prosecution Service has dropped all charges against the four Extinction Rebellion (XR) activists who blockaded the entrance to the UK’s largest open-cast coal mine, last summer with a pink boat. While removing the immediate burden of legal confrontation for the defendants, the decision has left a “crater of unfinished business” in the fight for climate justice and accountability for local residents…

Coal clings on in Aberpergwm appeal

Citing different grounds to the High Court, the Court of Appeal has nevertheless found against our appeal. The Court of Appeal judges disagreed with the judge in the High Court, and decided that current statute limits Welsh Ministers to only deciding whether a new conditional licence may be issued…


Share now:

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x