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Manage oil revenue to benefit; Govt urged

oil dollarThe Chairman of the Finance Committee of Parliament, Mr James Avedzi, has called on the government to manage oil revenue in a manner that would meet the socio-economic needs of the country.

He said in managing the oil revenue, it was important for the government to be guided by the Petroleum Revenue Management Act of 2011.

Mr Avedzi made the call when he opened the Sixth Africa Regional Extractive Industry Knowledge seminar in Accra yesterday.

The seminar, organised by the Natural Resource Governance Institute, is to help improve the capabilities of civil society groups, the media, parliament and government agencies to ensure strong fiscal responsibility and macro-economic planning.

The participants are from the extractive industries in Ghana, Nigeria, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

Transparent, inclusive management

Mr Avedzi said for extractive resources to truly benefit the people, the government should seek to manage the revenue in a transparent and inclusive manner and create a peaceful environment for oversight actors to operate.

He said national efforts to promote transparency and good governance in the extractive sectors in resource rich countries had gained significant momentum and interest over the last decade, adding it had also made substantial progress.

Mr Avedzi said about 23 countries in Africa had signed up to the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative and had made significant progress in the disclosure of extractive revenues received by their governments.

However it was still unclear whether civil society, the media and parliaments in these countries were sufficiently well informed to take full advantage of transparency for more effective oversight, he noted.

He said the challenge that still existed was for countries to help enlarge people’s choices by expanding their capabilities and opportunities in ways that were sustainable from the economic, social and environmental standpoints.

Timely interventions

In his welcome address, Nana Professor Kobina Nketsia V, the Paramount Chief of Esikado, commended the organisers of the seminar and said the programme was timely considering the inroads that Ghana and other countries were making in the extractive industry.

He urged the participants to endeavour to share the knowledge they would acquire at the end of the programme with their counterparts in their respective countries.

Source : http://graphic.com.gh/news/general-news/47715-manage-oil-revenue-to-benefit-govt-urged.html

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