The Association of Oil Marketing Companies (AOMCs) in the Republic of Ghana are seeking the intervention of the petroleum downstream regular, National Petroleum Authority (NPA), to address the alleged importation of over 300 Bulk Road Vehicles (BRVs) into the West African nation by Chinese petroleum firm, Sentuo Refinery to take over petroleum haulage business solely meant for Ghanaians.
In a strongly worded statement issued by Kwaku Agyemang-Duah, CEO and Industry Coordinator, he said Ghana’s petroleum haulage business has been driven by local entrepreneurs who have invested substantial resources, time and effort to establish and maintain their businesses.
He said through their efforts amidst the ever-increasing interest rates on credit facilities, they have played a vital role in the country’s economic development, providing employment opportunities and contributing to the overall growth of the nation.
“It is, therefore, a sad tale to observe, with the utmost disdain, the operationalisation of foreign trucks, allegedly sanctioned by Sentuo refinery, which for all intents and purposes, threaten to unfairly undermine and see to the eventual extinct of the local haulage industry, which has the backbone of the petroleum downstream sector for years.
“It is also further alleged that certain African nationals have been placed in some positions which ordinarily, could be filled with equally qualified Ghanaians, hence, exacerbating the Ghanaian unemployment situation,” Mr. Agyemang-Duah stated.
Mr. Agyemang-Duah, who described the move by Sentuo refinery as an awful thought, despicable and dastardly act, called on the NPA to make it clear that petroleum transportation is a 100 per cent Ghanaian-owned business.
He questioned on whose authority were the trucks allowed into the country.
He also sought to find out if they were given tax breaks.
It would be recalled that last week, the Tanker Owners Union of Ghana raised concerns over the influx of tanker trucks into the country.
Executive Secretary of the Tanker Owners Union, Ignatius Koku Doe, at a press conference, said their checks have revealed that about 300 tanker trucks have so far been imported into the country.
“We discovered these tankers have been brought in by Sentuo Refinery, which is about to start the production of oil and gas in the country.
“Already, the union members own about 5,000 trucks, and bringing in new ones to do the same job as ours will only create unhealthy competition,” he lamented.
“We are already confronted with the situation, and we are confused because it is creating fear and panic,” he said.
When contacted, Mr Albert Duncan, a Consultant with Sentuo Refinery, told energynewsafrica.com that the regulator has written to them regarding the issue and so would not want to speak about it in the media.