Deputy Minister for Energy in-charge of Petroleum, Dr Mohammed Amin Adam, is urging Ghanaians to embrace the changes government is introducing in the LPG distribution and marketing in the country, saying the new policy seeks to protect lives and property.
It will, additionally, create more jobs as compared to the current model.
He explained that the current model where consumers send their empty LPG cylinders to refilling stations to get it refilled is not the best.
He argued that it had become necessary to implement the Cylinder Re-circulation Model (CRM) policy, which seeks to introduce innovation in handling LPG due to the numerous gas explosions which has destroyed many lives and properties.
He explained that the CRM policy would lead to the establishment of LPG bottling plants where cylinders would be refilled and distributed to distribution points.
Customers would, therefore, have to go there with their empty cylinders to exchange for a filled one.
Speaking at a stakeholders engagement at the NPA head office in Accra, Dr. Amin Adam noted that the decision to introduce CRM was tough and difficult one but government had to do it in the interest of the safety of the citizens.
“Change is difficult and people do not readily accept, but change is a necessity. It brings value. Change will bring innovation and change, if it is positive, will bring improvement in our lives.
“And so when you have changed, that is not intended to destroy but to innovate, to reform and get things better. I want to appeal to all of you that you must accept the change for our good and the betterment of our children,” he said.
Dr. Amin Adam also disclosed that the first bottling plant is expected to be in operation this year, insisting that safety remains a major component in the policy.
The National Petroleum Authority (NPA), the downstream regulator, has been soliciting the inputs of members of the public at various forums in some parts of the country.
So far, the NPA has engaged with the Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu, Members of the Council of State, residents of Nima and Maamobi, Sunyani and Koforidua, as well as the media.
The Chief Executive of NPA, Hassan Tampuli, said the policy gives room for enormous job opportunities in several key areas.
He maintained that the policy will provide jobs for between 4,000 ad 4,500 people.
“There will also be a number of indirect jobs created for installations, maintenance, fabrication and other services. New investment opportunities such as bottling companies, bottle transportation, manufacturing of cylinders and cylinder re-distributors will also be available for grabs.”
Mr. Tampuli said the policy would be fully implemented and assured stakeholders there would be no turning back.
“The relevant licences will be issued and safety protocols will be keenly observed to ensure the safety of the good people of Ghana, while increasing access to LPG for domestic, commercial and industrial use from the current 25% level to 50% by 2030.”
On her part, the Second Lady, Samira Bawumia, expressed her commitment to the policy and promised to advocate for its implementation.
“The CRM will go a long way to encourage the safe use of LPG in domestic, commercial and industrial places. Under the new policy, LPG Marketing Companies (LPGMC) will ensure that the cylinders are in good condition before they are handed over to the end user.”
According to her, using LPG product should not result in the lost of lives.