By Alex Boye
The Minister of Energy, Boakye Agyarko, has announced government’s preparedness to annually provide various technical skills for over one thousand Ghanaians in the oil and gas industry.
He informed that the Ministry of Energy has already laid out a plan that would ensure that two hundred small and medium scale enterprises (SME’S) are provided with the capacity to gain a competitive advantage in the oil and gas industry.
The Minister of Energy made this know when he delivered a speech on behalf of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo at the launch of the accelerated oil and gas capacity programme in Accra yesterday.
“We want to make sure that Ghana runs a successful oil and gas regime, and my government will do everything possible to achieve this feat” he disclosed.
The Energy Minister informed that seven educational institutions have so far been selected to participate in the programme and have been well -equipped under a World Bank facility.
He also said government plans to partner national and international oil and gas exploration companies to take up more acreage in its offshore basins, with the view to achieving its objective of accelerating exploration.
The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation, Mr. Agyarko said has embarked on aggressive onshore seismic campaigns for the future development of the Voltain basin.
He also hinted that three hundred employees in public institutions are also adequately prepared to support the development of oil and gas policies, and the enforcement of industry regulations.
“Following the discovery of oil in the jubilee fields, a number of capacity building initiatives were introduced, universities continue to train geologists and petroleum engineers to help strengthened the oil and gas industry” he disclosed.
On his part, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Petroleum Commission, Egbert Faibilee JNR, hinted that the petroleum commission views the accelerated oil and gas capacity programme as a critical pathway in government’s efforts to train and offer the youth of Ghana opportunities to train and assume various job roles in the upstream petroleum subsector in the shortest possible time.
Lawyer Faibilee JNR noted that human capacity constraints have been identified in Ghana’s local content law and policy as inhibiting factors of optimal local content development in Ghana.
He also informed that capacity building of Ghanaians and local industries has been a cardinal pillar of the oil and gas sector even before the commercial discovery and subsequent production of petroleum in 2007 and 2010 respectively.
“Among the canons of the local content policy are technology and skills transfer to Ghanaians, development of local capacities and increased employment of Ghanaian professionals” Lawyer Faibilee stated.
The Petroleum Commission, he therefore said has developed strategic policies and guidelines to help realize the aforementioned objectives of the local content policy.