THE President, Mr John Dramani Mahama, has urged the investor community interested the country’s oil and gas sector to respect the rules and regulations outlined in the Petroleum Local Content and Local Participation Regulation, 2013 (LI 2204). Mr Mahama said the law, which was passed in November last year and came into force last month, ensured that both the investor and the country benefited from their engagement in the sector.
Speaking after a tour of the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC), which is the government’s initiative to provide support to Ghanaian small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to enable them to take advantage of business opportunities in the oil and gas sector, the President said he would ensure that various agencies responsible for ensuring compliance did the right thing.
“The government will ensure that relevant state institutions responsible for the sector and the enforcement of the regulation are up and doing,” he said.
President Mahama, who joined trainees undergoing training in oil and gas at a roundtable discussion and an exhibition organised by the training centre, was very happy with the progress made in less than a year after the establishment of the centre. He also expressed his appreciation for the fact that some of the centre’s products had already been contracted by international organisations and contracts had also been signed after the acquisition of the new business skills.
Petroleum, Mr Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah, said due to the overwhelming interest in the centre, training would soon be organised online. “We have realised that some SMEs in the sector are willing to be part of the training but it is difficult for them to make it to Takoradi due to the distance. We are, therefore, coming up with an online training for them,” he said.
Mr Buah said the design of the online training programme was such that those participating online would have the same quality as those sitting in the classroom at the centre in Takoradi.
He said work was going on and it would soon be rolled out; and that “the cost for courses and course materials is borne by the government and the Jubilee Partners. Therefore, distance should not be a problem to any SME in Ghana.”
Database of EDC
According to the Head of Training, Development and Research, Mr Yen Sapark, within a short period, four of the SMEs have secured contracts with international companies in the industry. Mr Yen said currently, the database of the centre had a total of 235 SMEs which were interested in undergoing training at the centre.
A total of 25, he added, were also currently going through the certification process, while 95 were going through the business incubation stage, with another 45, including a traditional ruler and a businessman, currently under training. He told the President that through the training, Ghanaian SMEs were adequately resourced to offer specific, realistic and alternative options to adequately and competitively partake in the oil and gas industry.
President later interacted with some of the trainees at the centre, which is under the directorship of Ms Shika Acolatse, and went round the exhibition stands of the trainees and the centre.
Source: Daily Graphic
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