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Regional News of Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Source: GNA

Takoradi holds Regional Consultation Forum on Petroleum Revenue Management

Takoradi, March 10, GNA - Ms Betty Bosomtwi-Sam, Deputy Western Regional Minister, on Tuesday called on traditional authorities and other opinion leaders to develop a blueprint that could take advantage of the oil and gas discovery in the area.

She expressed the need for the region to position itself to benefit from the oil and gas discovery in the area. Ms Bosomtwi-Sam made the call at a day's Regional Consultative Forum on Ghana's Petroleum Revenue Management organised by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning and the Regional Co-ordinating Council in Takoradi. The forum was attended by a number of people including members of the Metropolitan, Municipal and District assemblies, traditional rulers and businessmen.

Ms Bosomtwi-Sam noted that the region has nothing to show in terms of good roads, potable water, educational and health facilities and quality human resources despite its numerous natural and mineral resources. She said the region was demanding its fair share of the revenue that would accrue from the oil and gas industry. Ms Bosomtwi-Sam asked stakeholders to meet and formulate a national policy on oil and gas that would be binding on successive governments to ensure accountability, probity and transparency in the use of the revenue that would accrue from the industry.

Ms Bosomtwe-Sam said government was seriously pursuing the local content agenda by creating opportunities for employment for Ghanaians and to support indigenous businesses. She expressed the hope that the oil companies would demonstrate commitment to partner government in developing local entrepreneurship in the oil industry.

Mr. Benjamin Kwame Asante, a geophysicist with the Ghana National Petroleum Company (GNPC), said the Dzata oil well that Cote d'ivoire was laying claiming to was in the country's territorial waters and the United Nations would help trash out the issue, adding "There is no cause for alarm". He said since 2007 the country had made five major oil discoveries at the Jubilee, Odum, Sankofa, Tweneboa and Dzata fields. Mr. Asante said oil was discovered in the region at Cape Three Points Basin, which is about 65 kilometres from the land. He said the GNPC had planned to construct a gas processing plant estimated at one billion dollars that would be connected to the jubilee fields.

Dr Joe Amoako-Tuffour, Advisor to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, spoke on the "Use and Management of Oil and Gas Revenues". 10 March 10