IEA calls for transparency in oil & gas contracts

Oil RigThe Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) has called for a more open and transparent process of awarding contracts and licenses in the oil and gas sector.

Professor John Asafo-Adjaye, a visiting Research Fellow, IEA, said the institute was also advocating a points-based system for assessing licenses in the country.

Prof Asafo-Adjaye was speaking at a roundtable on the Petroleum Transparency and Accountability Index (P-TRAC Index) 2012 Report in Accra on Wednesday.

The P-TRAC Index is a project undertaken by the IEA to promote transparency and accountability in the management of Ghana’s oil and gas resources and to enhance the level of responsibility on the part of policy markers.

Prof. Asafo-Adjaye said the report was based on four aspects of the oil and gas value chain namely; Revenue Transparency Expenditure, Expenditure Transparency, Contract Transparency and the Ghana Petroleum Fund.

In the area of expenditure transparency, he said there had been a slight improvement over the previous year and to further enhance transparency, there was the need to provide more information on how the Annual Budget Funding Amount was spent beside what was reported.

Prof. Asafo-Adjaye said with the establishment of an independent authority to award contracts and licenses, some progress had been made in revenue transparency over the last year, specifically in the area of frequency and availability of reports.

“We advocate speedy passage of the Budget Act to enhance Parliament’s ability to conduct comprehensive analysis of the Budget,” he said.

Prof. Asafo-Adjaye urged Government to speedily pass the following bills; the Ghana Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, the Right to Information, the Petroleum Exploration and Production and the Local Content  to enhance transparency and accountability in the sector.

Source: GNA

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