The Chief Executive Officer of Ghana’s Petroleum Commission, Egbert Isaac Faibille, has implored upstream regulators in Africa to put in place measures that would ensure that citizens benefit from the oil and gas resources.
Speaking during a webinar to mark five years of Uganda’s oil and gas exploration on Thursday, Mr Faibille indicated that his outfit and Ugandan counterpart have a big responsibility to ensure that their citizens benefit from the oil and gas exploration.
“It is worthy to note that in not too distant past, many rich oil and gas countries were unable to utilise their resources to the benefit of their citizens,” he observed.
Speaking on the topic: ‘Enhancement of socioeconomic benefits for a new petroleum production country’, Mr Faibille was of the view that efficient regulations, enhanced revenue generation in the sector plus job creation for Ghanaians and Ugandans were crucial.
Additionally, he urged leveraging oil and gas resources to engender socio-economic growth for the two countries, as well as strict adherence to environmental best practices and good governance culture to be undertaken in the sector.
The Executive Director of the National Planning Authority of Uganda, Dr Joseph Muvawala said Uganda had put in place strong regulatory and implementation regimes to ensure efficient utilisation of oil and gas resources in the country.
“National participation is key in the supply of oil and gas services in the sector by Ugandans to achieve value creation and retention in the country. It was 28% in 2017 to 33% in 2018,” he said.
According to him, 72 percent was recorded in the value creation chain in 2019, out of which 81 percent Ugandans were employed in the oil and gas sector.
Dr Muvawala also assured of avowed commitment to further increase capacity for his people and utilise funds from the sector to better their living conditions.
Another good thing helping to ensure efficient operation in the oil and gas sector in Uganda, he identified was a strategic data management system called ‘The Crane data base’.
He added that it was over 20,000 gigabites of data and helps in monitoring on and off field exploration processes.
So far, he mentioned that $3.5 billion has been invested in the oil and gas sector and hoped that an estimated $15 billion would put in the area.
The Director General of Norwegian Petroleum Directorate, Ms Ingrid Solvberg said what had sustained the oil and gas sector of her country were strict adherence to administrative and regulative compliance over the years.
Speaking via a webinar under the theme: ‘Regulatory Excellence in the Oil and Gas sector’, she said: “In Norway, the Ministry concentrates on planning while the directorate concentrates on implementation and other functions to make the sector viable.”
According to her, Norway has a strict work cut-out for ministry responsible for the sector, which concentrates on efficient planning, while the directorate focuses on implementation and other auxiliary functions to make the oil and gas sector effective.
Ms Solvberg urged African countries to work hard and eschew all acts that negate good corporate governance culture from the sector in order to reap effectively from the oil and gas resources.
Touching of how to prepare ahead of post oil and gas to benefit the African continent, the Norwegian Petroleum Director General advised that, strategic measures are taken swiftly to drift towards renewable energy resource in order to cushion the continents economy in future, just as her country is doing.
Commenting on steps to stem environmental problems from explorations from oil and gas, she said measures have been crafted to ensure societal safety and companies in the sector are mandated to operate efficiently to reduce C02 emissions during production.