Dr Osei Boeh-Ocansey, Director General of the Private Enterprise Foundation (PEF), said the development objective of government towards the oil and gas discovery is the growth of the economy to facilitate development and industrialisation.
He said the industry is also expected to accelerate growth, poverty reduction and general prosperity of Ghanaians.
Dr Boeh-Ocansey said this in a speech read on his behalf in Wa at a day’s workshop, organised by the PEF in partnership with the Ghana Journalists Association and Ghana Institution of Engineers (GhGIE), for journalists and members of business associations in the Upper West Region.
He said the formulation of local content policies based on international best practice alone would not help in increasing local participation in the industry.
He explained that it is easy for multi-national oil companies to circumvent the local content provisions by claiming that the indigenous corporate entities do not meet the requirements to do business with them.
The forum was held on the topic: “Opportunities in Ghana’s Oil and Gas Industry for Local Participation.” It was aimed at educating Ghanaians on the opportunities in the emerging oil and gas industry.
Dr Boeh -Ocansey called on the government to focus on standards and skills development of local entrepreneurs, to achieve the 90 per cent local content target by 2020.
Mr Bukari M. Danladi of the GhGIE took the participants on the “Opportunities in Ghana Oil and Gas Industry”.
Some of the participants called on the government to persuade financial institutions to reduce their interest rates to encourage local entrepreneurs to borrow from the banks to compete favourable with their foreign counterparts in the oil business.
They also urged government to resource the tertiary schools to provide appropriate training on oil and gas for students to take up jobs in the industry.