Graphic Business News

Oil & Gas

Petroleum hub of West Africa • How competitive is Ghana’s bid?

By: Kwasi Zigah

The government has outlined a bold vision to make Ghana a hub for refined petroleum products of West Africa. The hub will be built in three phases over a 13-year period, starting from 2018 and to be completed by 2030.

It is anticipated that the petroleum hub will be built in the Western Region at a location that has the ideal environment and a single candidate land that can hold the planned infrastructure and activities, estimated to cover 20,000 acres.

The hub is to house four refineries with a total capacity of 600,000 barrels per stream day (bpsd), and will ultimately hold and redistribute 50 per cent of the West African consumption of petroleum products which is about 30 million metric tonnes per annum.

When completed, it will have storage infrastructure with capacity of up to 10 million cubic meters, port facility with multiple berths; refineries, petrochemical plants to process petroleum by-products, industrial park with related facilities s

Petroleum engineers develop skills

By: Kester Aburam Korankye

IN a bid to improve the skills and capacity of students and young professionals in the petroleum industry, the Society for Petroleum Engineers has organised a workshop in Accra to train participants in how to write effective technical papers in the oil and gas industry.

Abysmal performance
According to the Chairman of the Ghana section of the society, Mr Ato Aidoo, the workshop had become necessary due to the poor performance of Ghanaians who participated in this year’s technical paper competition organised by the African section of the Society of Petroleum Engineers International.

 “The Society of Petroleum Engineers International and its Africa regional section requested students to put in technical papers to compete against other students from different universities in African but this year none of the papers that Ghanaian students presented was selected to the final stage,” he told the GRAPHIC BUSINESS on the sidelines of the worksho

NPA targets zero accidents in retail outlets

By: Emmanuel Bruce

The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) has tasked all stakeholders in the downstream petroleum industry to aim at zero accident at all their retail outlets, adding that the loss of lives due to petroleum-related fires is becoming too many.

Aker Energy eyes more oil blocks in Ghana

By: Maxwell Akalaare Adombila

AFTER successfully buying Hess Ghana Limited out of the Deep-water Tano Cape Three Points (DW/TCTP) block, Norwegian oil exploration and production (E&P) firm, Aker Energy, has expressed its intention to bid for new blocks in the country whenever the opportunity arises.

The company’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr Jan Arve Haugan, however, told journalists in Accra that a bid for new blocks would be informed by company’s understanding of the geology of offshore Ghana.

“It will also come after Aker Energy has proven its capabilities to itself and the Government of Ghana that it is a good contractor,” Mr Haugan said in his first media interaction in the country after the US$100 million farm-out of Hess Ghana in the DW/TCTP block.

The deal was announced in February this year, marking the exit of Hess from Ghana and the entry of Aker Energy, the energy wing of Norwegian billionaire Mr Kjell Inge Rokke’s business empire, into the country’s upstream petr

Monitoring of oil projects in B/A exposes low supervision

By: Ama Amankwah Baafi, Sunyani West/Odomuase

The need to improve supervision during the execution of oil funded projects has become eminent.

A two-week monitoring and assessment of some oil funded projects in the Brong Ahafo Region revealed that while some projects have been properly and efficiently executed, others were done in a shoddy manner.

The monitoring team comprised members of the Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC) and the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ), with support from the German Development Corporation (GIZ).

The Chairman of PIAC, Dr Steve Manteaw, noted that the malaise with project implementation was the same in most parts of the country the team have been to.

EPA starts public hearing to clear misconceptions • Ahead of onshore exploration in Keta Basin

By: Jessica Acheampong

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has begun a series of public hearing to clear misconceptions and receive feedback from various districts to be affected by onshore exploration in the Volta Region.

The week-long activity, which will provide the platform for relevant stakeholders and the public to present their concerns about the project, is in accordance with the Environmental Assessment Regulations 1999, LI 1652 ( Regulation 17).

The decision to hold the public hearing is to elicit concerns and expectations from communities about the proposed 2D Seismic Survey by Swiss African Oil Company in the Keta Delta Block as the country prepares to venture into onshore exploration. Participants will also get the opportunity to propose mitigation measures and to address key public concerns.

Consistent thin spread of oil revenues worrying - PIAC Chairman

By: Ama Amankwah Baafi, Berekum

The Chairman of the Public Interest Accountability Committee (PIAC), Dr Steve Manteaw, has advised against the piecemeal allocation of oil revenue for projects.

Rationally, he said, there should be an assessment of the total amount required to complete any particular project before allocating funds.

"If we do it piecemeal, we may do so for about 100 years and Ghana will not see any progress in terms of the impact of oil," he stated.

He was speaking in an interview with the Graphic Business at Berekum in the Brong Ahafo Region, during the monitoring of the reconstruction of the Berekum-Sampa road by some members of the PIAC and the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ), with support from the GIZ.

Tax waivers in extractive sector eroding local gains

By: Ama Amankwah Baafi

A constitutional and petroleum law expert, Prof. Raymond Atuguba, has said that the issue of tax incentives and waivers to multinational companies, especially in the extractive sector needs to be challenged and substantially changed if Ghana is serious about promoting long- term economic development.

He noted that company tax payments were minimal due to low tax rates, while governments often provided companies with generous incentives such as corporation tax holidays.

During a presentation on the Legal and Political Economy analysis of the Ghana-Exxonmobil Petroleum Agreement to some members of the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists IFEJ) at Akosombo, he said that many African governments depended on mineral resources for revenues, yet the extent of foreign ownership means that most wealth was  being extracted along with the minerals.

ExxonMobil deal to boost local refinery capacity

By: Jessica Acheampong

The country is expected to get more crude oil to refine locally as part of the domestic supply requirement under the petroleum exploration agreement between the Government of Ghana and Exxon Mobil Corporation (ExxonMobil).

Under the Domestic Supply Requirement, (Article 15.1) of the agreement, the Ghana Group are under obligation to supply their respective entitlements for local consumption.

Again, the contractor (ExxonMobil) and associates are under obligation under Article 15.2 to supply a volume of crude oil for local consumption, subject to being given three months prior notice which is consistent with Section 71 of the Petroleum Exploration and Production Law (2016), Act 919.

Parliament pushes for more local content in petroleum sector

By: Emmanuel Bruce

PARLIAMENT’S Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has urged the Petroleum Commission to expedite action on developing the required local technical skills that will enable the country to take control of the production and management of its petroleum resources.

In a bid to increase local participation in the sector, the committee also advised the commission to support local firms to raise capital to enable them to increase their shareholding in future oil blocks.