MTN Ghana on Friday organized a day’s workshop to discuss and explore the prospect of providing broadband network services to oil companies operating offshore in Ghana.
The workshop, organized in collaboration with Pard Energy (PE), a Norwegian based energy company, aims to create awareness of the technological opportunities and potential to converge broadband data and voice services for the offshore oil industry in Ghana.
It also discussed expertise in data and voice services as well as petroleum-related value added service, which will be required by the companies in the energy sector when Ghana begins to produce oil.
Mr Gideon Quarcoo, the Deputy Minister of Communication said the Deployment of the Advanced Communications Infrastructure (DAI), particularly off-shore broadband facility, would serve as an added incentive and a tangible evidence of government’s commitment to provide an enabling environment to attract more investors in the sector.
He said Ghana was pioneering a bold initiative by adopting new communication opportunities through the offering of a broadband network offshore to everyone involved in the rapidly emerging petroleum industry to enable them get much more out of the petroleum activities.
"In this regard, the Ministry is impressed to learn about the initiative by MTN and Pard Energy to put together leading international competence and experience from the telecom and petroleum sectors to establish Ghana’s offshore broadband network," he said.
He said government was undertaking a review of the national ICT for Development Policy to include elements of Broadband Policy, Digital Mapping, Cyber Security and Green ICT.
Mr Quarcoo said the combination, the resources and capacities could revolutionize the petroleum industry and indeed, demonstrate the importance of advanced communication services in the performance of the oil and gas industry.
He stressed that the functionality provided by this structure would have enormous impact on the work processes, introduction of new applications, the social life of the adjoining communities and general economic development.
He noted that Ghana undertook the reform of its telecommunications in the middle of 1990s and among the first countries to introduce the bold economic reforms that opened the telecom sector.
"I also take the opportunity to invite all stakeholders involved in Ghana’s exciting petroleum industry development to take an active part in making this a reference project for Ghana and for the petroleum industry world-wide", he said.
Mr Brett Goschen, the Chief Executive Officer of MTN Ghana, said as a leader in the telecommunications industry, MTN was always working to identify needs and develop innovative ways to provide the best telecommunications services, which would meet the demands of emerging markets in support of development.
Mr Goschen said "We recognize the critical role telecommunications would play in the development of the petroleum industry in Ghana and we would be delighted to partner with you and contribute to yours and Ghana’s success story".
He said MTN intended to build and operate Offshore Broadband Network Infrastructure for the petroleum industry in Ghana including the oil companies and engineering companies, research and development institutions and government authorities to improve productivity and efficiency, reduce cost and enhance services quality and safety of people.