The financial experience of Boakye Agyarko is good for the current state of Ghana’s energy challenges—this is a verdict from the African Center for Energy Policy (ACEP) on the nomination of Mr. Agyarko for the position of Energy Minster by President Nana Akufo-Addo.
Mr. Agyarko is described as a successful banker, having worked as a banker in New York for several years.
He has also worked as an investment banker for years, with enormous experience in negotiations and managerial skills in oil and gas contracts.
It is expected that Mr. Agyarko will bring to bare his experience in financial contracts to the energy sector.
The major challenge Mr. Agyarko will face if approved by parliament will be his ability to prevent a power crisis.
But speaking to Citi Business News, the Head of Policy Unit at ACEP, Dr. Ishmael Ackah described the energy challenges as a financial one, hence Mr. Agyarko’s nomination a good move.
“The main challenge in the power sector is finance. VRA owes about $1.3 billion. When you take VRA, ECG and GridCo together they owe billions of cedis . So these are the major challenges,” he said.
Dr. Ackah pointed out that the huge debt owed to some institutions in the sector has caused a rippling effect for the economy, hence requires an individual with understanding of the financial issues.
“We owe N-Gas, we owe Ghana Gas and so many other institutions so you need somebody who understands these things and can deal with them. When you pick the petroleum sector we need competent investors to come in. We now have about two fields and next year we will have another field. We still need a lot of investment so again in business friendly setting to the petroleum sector,” he proposed.
Dr. Ackah was of the view that, Mr. Agyarko’s experience and background will bring a lot of influence in implementing the energy policies of the government.
“When you look at the background of Boakye Agyarko , the fact that at least in terms of education and experience he has spent so much time in the financial sector he is quite qualified to be the energy minister,” said adding that “we should also be cautious , we’ve seen people who have so much experience and they have come in and translating the experience into results have become a challenge and that is where you would need to fall on experts within the field to drive the government policy in the sector”.