Following the decline in international crude price and the non-availability of infrastructure for oil production locally in Sub-Saharan African oil-producing countries, experts and professionals in the industry have renewed the call for partnership for the purpose of improving best practices in the oil and gas sector.
The call was made at the recently concluded maiden edition of the Sub-Saharan Upstream Oil and Gas Summit and Exhibition at Accra, Ghana with the theme, ‘Unlocking Potentials in sub-Sahara Africa Upstream Oil & Gas”. Attendees at the summit included key industry players across Africa and beyond, Exploration & Production Companies, Marginal Field Companies, State Governments, Government Agencies, Legal & Financial Services Providers, Production & Processing Technology Manufacturers as well as Production & Processing Service Companies.
Speaking at the event, the Chief Executive Officer of the Sub Saharan Africa Upstream Oil and Gas Summit, Dapo Ayoola said ‘’Oil and gas companies in the region can benefit from each other when individual experiences are shared for the sole benefit of stakeholders and end users’’. He encouraged IOCs to promote local content in areas where their organisations are resident, noting that by providing support for higher education and on the job training for employees, companies support local skill development which will in turn aid in adequate return on investments for the organisations when these skills are applied for daily production of raw crude products into refined petroleum products for human and organizational use.
Addressing participants at the Summit, the Former Group Executive Director (Exploration and Production), Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Engr. Philip Chukwu disclosed that over the past 20 years, several world class oil and gas field have been discovered in the deep offshore off Nigeria and Ghana and that should engender a refocus for deep water play from Mauritania and Nigeria if collaborative efforts are made. ‘In the sub-Saharan regions, he continued, it is evident that many new opportunities still exist, especially for the exploration and production (E&P) companies that are willing to take risks’.
He called on professionals in the industry to latch on the following recommendations to address challenges in the industry: implementation of collaborative strategies with regards to the success of the industry; better security for workers in the oil and gas industry; more effective counter-strategy against oil theft and sabotage; quick passage of industry regulations and bills; better funding for capital projects and clear pending payments on expenditure etc.
The Summit was an enlightening forum for all energy professionals operating in the region. It provided a world-class platform for the energy industry players to rob minds on pertinent issues besetting the sector. It also enabled participants the opportunity to understand the intricacies of the oil and gas sector, the potentials of the industry if partnerships are established and the sizable share of global reserves and resources deposited in Nigeria, Ghana and other oil-producing countries in the Sub-Saharan African region.