News / Economy

Ghana Wants Locals to Benefit from Oil Production

FILE - Ghana's President John Atta Mills turns on the valve to allow the first barrel of crude to flow from the Jubilee offshore oil field.
FILE - Ghana's President John Atta Mills turns on the valve to allow the first barrel of crude to flow from the Jubilee offshore oil field.
Joana Mantey
— A new law in Ghana requires oil and gas companies to make greater use of local products and services.  
 
The broad objective of the new law, known as Petroleum Regulation on Local Content and Participation, is to create jobs and promote business development.

It gives preference to local groups in the granting of licenses for petroleum activities.  The law further gives Ghanaians the opportunity to own up to a five percent stake in any investment by an international company.

Ghana discovered offshore oil deposits in 2007, and commercial production began in 2010.

The country's Petroleum Commission is convinced the new law will help more oil revenue reach the people.

The chief executive officer of the commission, Theo Ahwireng, said local participation in the oil sector will be a big boost to Ghana's economy.
 
“It is through participation that you develop the skills of the people, so that at the end of the day when the oil wealth is gone, you will leave an economy with skilled people and skilled business," he said. "We’ve had fantastic response from a great number of the companies.  We have sat with them to help them go through the procurement process and I must say the support has been very good."

However, it remains unknown whether the law will create more jobs in offshore oil exploration and drilling.  Local companies active in the oil sector mostly offer onshore services such as engineering, construction, security and transport.  

Some of the local companies are small and poorly structured.  If they try to compete for lucrative offshore contracts, they stand to face stiff competition from more experienced firms from abroad.

Awhireng hopes a proposed enterprise development center, set up in partnership with international oil companies, would help local workers and businesses gain the skills that oil companies need.

“Nobody wakes up from the beginning and becomes a dynamic gold medallist," he said. "You need to go through a development process.  I know that most of the rig workers that we have at the moment are a legacy of the work during the 80’s between Ghana and Cote D’Ivoire.  Definitely, these gentlemen are advanced in age and there is need for us to get younger people.  Currently, the Petroleum Commission is embarking on an exhaustive human resource mapping to look at the skills that are applicable; those that we have in Ghana and those that we don’t have and find out exactly what we need to do to develop these competencies locally."
 
The executive director of Ghana’s Oil and Gas Service Providers Association, Nuertey Adzeman, describes the new law as the best thing ever to happen in the country’s oil industry.   He said its provisions can lead to "winning situations" for both international investors and local companies hoping to profit from Ghana's growing oil sector.

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7305
JPY
USD
101.53
GBP
USD
0.5830
CAD
USD
1.0656
INR
USD
60.075

Rates may not be current.