The approval of a Gas Master Plan by Cabinet would address the country’s infrastructure gaps and clarify areas of priority in the power sector, Mr Emmanuel Kofi Armah-Buah, Minister of Petroleum has said.
Mr Armah-Buah said the Ministry has begun work on the development of a Gas Policy and a Gas Act that would provide transparent regulatory framework for the gas industry.
“The policy will address infrastructure requirements; funding, institutional mandates for gas sector agencies and provide a revised gas pricing policy reflecting our developmental priorities as a country,” he added.
The Minister said this in an interview with the Ghana News Agency on the Ministry’s activity in the oil and gas industry.
He said government was systematically developing additional gas fields and ramping up volumes in existing fields, adding that in the next decade, 80 per cent of country’s source of power would come from thermal generation with gas as the critical feed stock.
He noted that with the various projects outlined by the Ministry, gas volumes from indigenous fields will reach 350 Million Standard Cubic Feet Per Day (MMSCFD) by 2019 that would be enough to generate over 2000 Mega Watt of power.
Mr Armah-Buah said additional volumes would in the long term provide the opportunity for the country to realise its vision to utilise gas for other industrial uses beyond power generation such as fertilizer and petrochemicals.
He observed that the Gas Processing Plant, which has a capacity of 150 MMSCFD was currently supplying about 80 MMSCFD of gas for power generation.
He said the plant was also producing about 500 metric tonnes of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) per day, which was about 50 per cent of national demand.
“In addition to the main project, several ancillary projects within the Gas corridor are being undertaken. These include the construction of asphalt road network, including construction of bridges for the safe evacuation of the LPG from the gas processing plant,” he said.
The Minister said Ghana Gas has installed a backup overhead compressor to minimise interruptions to gas supply and commenced procurement and installation of a Mainline Compressor Station in anticipation of the Sankofa gas which would be available from the 2nd Quarter of 2018,
“The Ghana Gas has completed the extension of its pipeline to the battery limit of the West Africa Gas Pipeline Company’s (WAPCo) Regulatory and Metering Station at Aboadze awaiting WAPCo to interconnect to ensure bidirectional transportation of gas between the two critical load centres of Takoradi and Tema, and guarantee flexibility and security of supply”.
Mr Armah-Buah said the cumulative production from the jubilee field as at September, was approximately 181 million barrels of oil and 41 bcf of gas exported to the Gas Processing Plant and that about 80 MMSCFD was supplied to power plants to generate electricity.
He said the Tweneboa, Enyenra and Ntomme (TEN) Fields would deliver about 80,000 bopd and 50 MMSCFD to fuel thermal plants for electricity generation, stressing that production from the TEN field would complement Jubilee to ensure uninterrupted gas supply to the power plants.
To date, TEN has produced about 800,000 barrels of oil. TEN gas export to the Gas Processing Plant (GPP) is expected to begin in the 1st quarter, 2017.
The Minister said the Voltaian Basin, which represented 40 per cent of the country’s land mass was under intensive assessment by Ghana National Petroleum Commission to determine its oil and gas prospectivity.
He said an Environmental Impact Assessment has been completed in addition to procurement processes to acquire 2D seismic for the area.
Mr Theophilous Ahwireng, Petroleum Commission said on August 4, 2016, the Petroleum (Exploration and Production) Bill 2016, Act (Act 919) was passed into law replaced the Petroleum (Exploration and Production) Law, 1984, Act 84.
The new law sought to ensure greater transparency and prudent management of the country’s oil and gas resources including some key features such as a public tender process for the allocation of petroleum blocks, in ensuring transparency in award process.
He said the establishment of a Local Content Fund was to provide financial resources for the education and training of Ghanaian citizens, as well as loans to indigenous Ghanaian companies engaged in petroleum activities to empower them to effectively compete in the petroleum sector and bring improvement in the economic lives of our people.
Mr Ahwireng said a number of policy initiatives were introduced and institutional restructuring were embarked upon to further improve the enabling environment for investment in the downstream sector.
These include, Petroleum Price Deregulation, The Single Point Mooring (SPM) and Conventional Buoy Mooring (CBM) Facility, BRV Tracking Scheme and Petroleum Products Marking Scheme, Rural LPG Promotion Programme, National Strategic Stock of Petroleum Products, and Revamping of Tema Oil Refinery.
He said the National Petroleum Authority has made considerable progress in the implementation of the Bulk Road Vehicle tracking scheme and the Petroleum Product Marking Scheme.
Mr Ahwireng explained that Petroleum Product Marking Scheme provides a foundation for an effective quality monitoring systems by offering consumer quality assurance and protection for products at the final dispensing outlet, Checking/controlling malpractices that result in loss of government revenue and a secondary effect of interfering with product quality.
He noted that the Fuel Marking was the introduction of a unique identifier (bio-chemical liquid) in trace quantities into petroleum products at depots before distribution unto the market.
“Currently, over 2,056 Bulk Road Vehicles, representing 100 per cent transporting petroleum products across the country have been equipped with tracking devices by the NPA and adulteration of petroleum products has reduced drastically from 32 per cent to less than 2 per cent, he added.
Mr Thomas Akabzaa, Chief Director at the Ministry of Petroleum said as part of Government’s effort to increase access to LPG in the country, the Ministry, launched the Rural LPG Promotion Programme to distribute 1000 6kg LPG cylinders, cook stoves and related accessories.
The programme is part of Government plans to ensure that 50 per cent of Ghanaians use LPG by 2020.
He said BOST has begun supplying petroleum products to the land-locked countries of Burkina Faso, Niger and Mali from the Bolgatanga depot and by sea to Benin and Nigeria and there were plans to extend the exports to Liberia.