Ghana asked to demystify oil and gas industry

Mr Michael Dedey, an engineer, on Friday called for the demystification of the oil and gas industry which seems an area reserved for only big time players in the industry.

He said apart from the management staff, the industry requires large amount of middle level technicians and artisans at various levels.

Mr Dedey, who is the General Manager of Fleet Management Solutions, was speaking at a workshop for SMEs in Koforidua on the topic, “Opportunities in the Ghana’s emerging oil and gas industry for local participation”.

It was organized by the Private Enterprises Foundation (PEF) in collaboration with the Ghana Journalists Association and the Ghana Institute of Engineers.

He said if Ghana was to derive the maximum benefit from the industry, there was the need to support and encourage Ghanaian SMEs to participate in the supply chain of the oil and gas industry.

Mr Dedey said that was the area where many Ghanaians could benefit from the investment and avoid capital flight in terms of payment of the services of foreign companies who would win those contracts.

He said one did not need to have knowledge in “rocket science” to work on the platform of the  Floating , Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) and that most of the local painters, welders and sprayers could do that work.

Mr Dedey said due to the high risk involved in working around oil and gas, there are high safety standards that needed to be strictly followed in working on the rig.

He said local artisans needed to be certificated through retraining to enable them appreciate the need to maintain certain standards in working on the rig.

The Director General of PEF, Dr Osei Boeh-Ocansey, appealed to the government to support the private sector in terms of standard and skills development and other aspects of business development.

He said developing local content policies alone were not enough to enable local participation in the industry since multi-national oil companies could easily circumvent the policy under the pretext that the local companies do not meet the requirements to do business with them.

Participants at the workshop complained about the high cost of registration with the GNPC when they want to win contract to do business in the oil industry.

Source: GNA

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