The Managing Director of local Oil Marketing Company–Top Oil, Ben Atsu Agbomanyi has called for mergers of indigenous and wholly-owned Ghanaian companies to compete with multinational companies in Ghana’s petroleum downstream industry.
According to him, an increase in local participation of indigenous companies in the petroleum downstream sector will spur economic growth and reduce forex losses.
Speaking to Citi Business News at the sidelines of the inauguration of a new Top Oil filling Station at SCC-Weija, Mr. Agbomanyi said government must support local mergers in the oil industry to help optimize their operations in the country.
“I think that Ghanaians must be the pivot or the anchor of this economy. I don’t necessarily think that we should give everything to the multinationals. I think that the government and the financial institutions should also help the local companies to grow,” he said.
Using Top Oil as an example, Mr. Agbomanyi stated that the company is a wholly Ghanaian owned but has managed to compete with other multinational giants in the oil industry to make good margins.
“So I think if we get the support and can put ourselves together to make a bigger company we will create more jobs and not for multinationals to buyout. If it’s all about multinationals buying the companies, then we will all lose one day,” he said.
Currently, multinational oil marketing companies like Shell, Total and Puma who are operating in the country are said to be controlling more than 50 per cent of the total market share of petroleum products marketed and distributed.
There are currently about 75 OMCs operating in Ghana.
The debate to form mergers and acquisitions has become imminent at a time that most of the locally owned OMCs are said to be struggling to stay afloat.
This has led to calls for the OMC’s with huge but good balance sheets to consider mergers or acquisition.
Earlier, the Managing Director of GOIL, Patrick Akorli told Citi Business News his outfit will consider acquiring underperforming petroleum retailers to strengthen its competitiveness in the industry.