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Business News of Friday, 28 August 2020


GNPC must diversify investment portfolio - NRGI

The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC)

In a COVID-19 era where National Oil Companies (NOCs) in the world are grappling with uncertainty, Ghana ignores global energy evolution at its own peril, international experts in the oil and gas space have warned.

Advisor with the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) Patrick Heller maintains that with lots of International Oil Companies (IoCs) revising their expectations downwards, Ghana had to assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) and make some hard choices for the Corporation.

The diversification of GNPC’s investment portfolio was critical, in the wake of the COVID-19 odds.

According to Heller who was speaking at a national dialogue on the sustainability of GNPC organised by NRGI maintained that for GNPC to survive the odds of COVID-19, “strategic priorities are critical, as well as making tough choices on trade-offs.”

The dialogue dubbed ‘The GNPC We Want’ and held virtually was aimed at providing a platform for a national collective review of GNPC’s performance, challenges and sustainability strategy.

With the global drive to transition away from fossil fuels, NOCs from across the globe had started pivoting toward renewable energy investments.

The NRGI advisor and economic analyst with special focus on State Owned Enterprises advised NOCs and their governments to ensure that company strategies outline a sustainable vision for their futures.

Integration is way to go – Dr Steve Manteaw

Immediate past Chairman of the Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC), Dr Steve Manteaw encouraged GNPC to diversify its investments, noting that the diversification should take the form of integration.

“Integration is the way to go. GNPC will have to narrow, and re-prioritise its investment portfolio,” Dr Manteaw added.

He pointed out that a retooled Tema Oil Refinery (TOR), and the Ghana Oil Company Limited (GOIL) could serve as vehicles for value chain benefit maximization for the NOC.

“GNPC could look at buying into GOIL or acquiring government stake in GOIL and therefore benefiting from that company’s profitable business.

GNPC revises expenditure

General Manager, Commercial at GNPC, Joseph Dadzie said the outbreak of the pandemic had led to a 30 percent shortfall in the corporation’s revenue compelling it to revise its expenditure downwards by 34 percent.

In order for GNPC to stay capitalised, he said the corporation will pursue diversified revenue generation sources, saying “diversification is necessary for long-term survival of the corporation.”

“If your only source of income is from the selling of oil and in this COVID-19 times where the price of oil has plunged into an all-time low, then you will be faced with revenue challenges.

The corporation is focused on strengthening its accelerated growth strategy by consolidating its operatorship drive for effective financial sustainability and independence to take a commanding lead in the upstream petroleum sector in Ghana,” Mr. Dadzie added.

Mr. Dadzie said the GNPC had plans to limit its reliance on expatriates and invest in adequate human, technical and commercial resources.

The move, he said, was to ensure that the sector, which is capital intensive, could create jobs for Ghanaians.