The Energy Ministry has cited the lack of comprehensive data on Ghana’s oil blocks as well as the small size of the blocks as some of the reasons for the low interest in the first oil blocks bidding round.
Out of the three blocks put up for the first bidding round, four companies expressed interest in one block, only one company expressed interest in block 2 while no company showed interest in the last block.
Deputy Minister, Mohammed Amin Adam told Citi Business News that the government has done its assessment on the responses it received from the companies and has taken steps to address them.
“Basically, two major issues emerged, the first one is that the data that we already have on those blocks was not comprehensive enough and therefore they didn’t have enough data to enable them to make commercial decisions so we have to improve on the quality of the data,” he stated.
According to him the second issue that came up was the size of the acreage, which he said was too small for most of the companies compared to the offers they get from other oil-rich countries.
“For some of them, their exploratory strategies require them to operate in larger acreages and there are a number of countries that will give larger acreages to companies. If they compare what they get as per their strategies with what they were offered, our acreages or blocks were smaller in size and therefore it was inconsistent with their strategies”
The Deputy Minister stated further that his outfit will take a decision after discussions with stakeholders and consultants to decide whether to revise the size of the blocks for future bidding rounds to make Ghana’s upstream sector more competitive.