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Petroleum Commission halts fast paced contract approvals

Egbert Faibille

The Petroleum Commission has warned that it will not approve any petroleum contract that does not fulfill the three months’ mandatory notice ahead of its implementation.

The caution follows what the Commission describes as the abuse of the law by oil companies.

According to the CEO of the Petroleum Commission, Egbert Faibille, the issue also prevents proper scrutiny of contracts.

Speaking to Citi Business News, Mr. Faibille stressed that the outfit is worried as the development also leads to the awarding of contracts to favourites.

“…But from April 1, anybody in the upstream sector who has any contract of a hundred thousand dollars and above to give up, will have to submit that contract to the Petroleum Commission at least two months before the award of the contract so that we will get to know what is involved and will alert all those companies that could put in bids to do so; the time for short term and knee-jerk approaches is over,” he said.

The Petroleum Commission boss was speaking at the first local content procurement conference in Accra.

The conference is among others to expose the International Oil Companies operating in Ghana to the existing petroleum laws and their impact on promoting local content in areas which are necessary to be carried out.

Meanwhile the enforcement is not expected to take a retrospective effect.

In Mr. Faibille’s view, the Commission is reviewing current contracts hence the commission will be meticulous going forward.

“The law states that they must advertise so we are giving them the moratorium because we recognize that some of those contracts are already in motion (that is the transitional contracts) and we are monitoring those ones.”

Commenting on other mechanisms to improve local participation, Mr. Egbert Faibille reiterated the establishment of the petroleum register which will provide up to date information on all petroleum agreements, establishment of local content fund as well as the unbundling of services to enhance participation of Ghanaian companies in contracts.

By: Pius Amihere Eduku/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana

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