“We’re very close to signing off an agreement with the government of Uganda,” Reuters quoted Tullow’s exploration director Angus McCoss told an industry conference.

“We’re very hopeful for a very swift conclusion after the election…We expect to hear very shortly,” he added, when questioned by reporters on the sidelines of the event.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni was elected to a fourth term in office by a large margin on Sunday.

Tullow is waiting for formal approval from Kampala for both its acquisition of stakes in oil fields from a former partner and its subsequent plan to bring in new partners French supermajor Total and China National Offshore Oil Company.

Uganda has so far given both parts of the deal its blessing but said it wants to find a basis for resolving a tax issue before it gives the final go-ahead.