Ghana’s Petroleum Commission says it has initiated steps to scale up capacity of indigenous Ghanaian oil and gas companies to address critical knowledge gap in areas which adversely affected the local content and local participation regulations in the oil industry.
According the Commission, there are challenges and limitations of indigenous Ghanaian companies participation in the industry and consequently said only a fraction of spend by the international oil companies (IOCs) and major service companies take place in the country.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Petroleum Commission, Egbert Faibille has described the situation as very worrying and disappointing at a workshop held in Accra.
The workshop was organized by the Commission in collaboration with the Tullow Ghana on business ethics and compliance aimed at developing a robust local content in the upstream oil and gas sector in the country in a sustainable and transparent manner.
He explained that the resources that finances these spend are not only owned by Ghanaians but are also depletable.
In addition, the workshop will enhance the core mandate of the Commission and its stakeholders to add value to their good governance practises, ethics compliance and transparency in the upstream oil and gas sector.
He said assessment of the impact of the Petroleum (Local Content and Local Participation) Regulations, 2013, (LI 2204) after its implementation over a six years period has indicated that there are challenges facing local companies in the oil and gas industry.
“It is as a result of the emerging challenges that Board of the Commission in the year 2018 instituted a Business Advisory and Enterprise Development Department to provide business advisory support to build the capacity of indigenous Ghanaian companies in the said sector to meet the requirements of the oil and gas industry”, he stressed.
Throwing more light in business ethics and compliance in the oil and gas industry, Mr Faibille said it plays a significant role in making contract award decisions as some indigenous companies are unable to meet the expectation as the Commission is putting in place pragmatic measures to identify ways of overcoming the challenges as well as blocking loopholes particularly in the areas of bribery and corrupt practises.
On COVID-19 pandemic and its attendant impact on the oil and gas sector of the economy, the CEO said training programmes of the Commission for the year 2020 did not materialize due to the pandemic and as a result the Commission have decided to go virtual in organizing the said programmes.
In a remark, the Managing Director of Tullow Ghana, Wissam Almonthiry said when ethics and compliance are properly applied in the oil and gas industry players in the sector will be equipped with the relevant knowledge and work in line with global best practices in the industry.
Ben Laryea reporting from Accra, Ghana