The 2015 Semi-Annual Report released by PIAC – a committee created by an Act of Parliament – also revealed that no revenue was received from the gas sector into the Petroleum Holding Fund although wet gas valued at 32 million dollars were evacuated to the Atuabo Gas Processing Plant.
The report also stated that total petroleum receipts during the first half of the year was $274.47 million compared to US$562.48 million received during the same period in the preceding year, representing a 56% decline in revenue.
The significant decline in revenues was attributed to a sharp decline in global crude oil prices falling from US$108.37 in mid-2014 to US$ 61.31 in mid-2015. According to the report the fall affected all sources of petroleum revenues, especially Corporate Income Tax (CIT).
The report further revealed that an amount of US $56.69 million was withdrawn from the GSF to compensate for a shortfall in the projected quarterly ABFA for Quarter 1.
This is the first time such a withdrawal has been made from the GSF for this purpose since the coming into force of the Petroleum Revenue Management Act (PRMA).
The report added that Crude oil production from the Saltpond Oilfield continued to decline, dropping 37, 443 barrels during the first half of 2014 to 27, 513 barrels over the same period in 2015.
It also revealed that no royalties were received from the Saltpond Oilfield even though 25, 453 of oil were lifted from the fields during the period under review.
Following the revelations, PIAC recommended that;
The $222.93 million (GH¢666.06 million) that was swept by the BoG should be refunded to ABFA account as soon as practicable, in the same manner that 30% of the Sinking Fund that was also swept, was restored by the BoG.
Also immediate steps must be taken by the GRA and/or BoG to compel Saltpond Oil Producing Company Limited (SOPCL) to pay up outstanding royalties that had fallen due to the state prior to the suspension of its operators.
PIAC also recommended that the Government of Ghana should endeavor to pay US$50 million special advance given to it by the GNPC in 2014 to help improve the capitalization of the state oil company as well as forestall a situation where it becomes a regular practice by the GoG to be making such demands and; The GNGC must ensure that all outstanding receivables in respect of lean gas sold to VRA is paid as a matter of urgency so as to guard against the GNGC falling into the never-ending cycle of indebtedness that characterize the power sector.