The government remains committed to the development of the requisite skills needed to enhance local content and local participation in the country's oil and gas industry.
According to the Ministry of Energy, the robust petroleum sector local content fell in line with the Ghana Beyond Aid agenda.
In a speech read on his behalf by a Deputy Minister of Energy, Mr Andrew Agyapa Mercer, at the opening of the seventh Local Content Conference and Exhibition (LCCE) in Takoradi yesterday, the Minister of Energy, Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh, challenged indigenous businesses to make conscious efforts to build the technological capacity needed to function competitively in the upstream sector, both within and beyond Ghana’s borders.
“It is important that we first appreciate the milestones chalked up, assess the progress made and identify the areas requiring improvement,” Dr Prempeh said.
The LCCE, being held on the theme: “Optimising technology transfer in Ghana’s upstream petroleum industry”, will scrutinise progress made so far in promoting the participation of indigenous companies in the industry.
Since its inception, the LCCE has created a platform for the exchange of ideas on local content development, as well as providing an opportunity for networking.
Over 60 companies are participating in the exhibition.
The minister said the part of the industry being ceded to indigenes was in acknowledgment of the importance of local content and participation to the sustainable growth of Ghana’s young upstream petroleum sector, as contained in the Petroleum (Local Content and Local Participation) Regulations 2013 (L.I. 2204).
He said it was important that the scope of the local content covered a wide array of activities, including fabrication and construction, well drilling services, exploration and seismic services and marine operations.
Dr Prempeh said the government’s Accelerated Oil and Gas Capacity (AOGC) programme was set up with the intent of building indigenous capacity to enable effective participation of the local people in the petroleum sector.
“I must say the programme has so far been successful and undoubtedly continues to accomplish its objectives of creating jobs, facilitating capacity building, localising training and enhancing skills in the upstream petroleum sector,” he said.
The Chief Executive of the Petroleum Commission, Mr Egbert Faibille Jr, said the commission recognised that the skills of local players in information and database solutions, software design and drawings placed them in a better shape to benefit immensely from the local content.
The Western Regional Minister, Mr Kwabena Okyere-Darko Mensah, commended the commission for its commitment to the development of the industry over the years.