Government is seeking a joint venture with Saudi petroleum giant, PetroSaudi, to perk up the operations of Tema Oil Refinery (TOR).
The arrangement, when successful, would revamp the workings of TOR and ensure the effectiveness and efficiency of the refinery, John Jinapor, Deputy Minister of Energy and Petroleum announced this on the floor of Parliament.
In an answer to a question posed by the Member of Parliament (MP) for Talensi, Robert Mosore, seeking to know whether TOR is functioning at full or maximum capacity, Mr Jinapor said the company is not working at full ability as a result of operational inefficiencies and its inability to establish letters of credit for purchase of crude oil.
This, he said, had necessitated government to facilitate the joint venture arrangement with PetroSaudi for the multilateral company to address the inefficiencies of TOR and ensure regular supply of crude oil.
Mr Jinapor in an answer to another question posed by the MP for Afigya Kwabre South, William Owuraku Aidoo, wanting to know the cause of the current power outages in the country and when the crisis would end, he said the issue had more to do with the erratic gas supply from the West Africa Gas Pipeline Project, unplanned and planned maintenance on power plants and the low water levels in the Akosombo and Bui dams.
He said the Ministry is working effectively with the power producers to ensure that their plants become functional as soon as practicable to ameliorate the power deficit accounting for the crisis.
The Deputy Minister said the completion of the TICO Expansion Project would give the country 110megawatts of power by the first quarter of 2015, which would lead to the reduction of the deficit in power generation.
He said a further 450 megawatt of power would be generated when a power ship government is procuring arrives in the country by the second quarter of 2015.
The Minister said government is however in talks with Nigeria to ensure adequate flow of gas through the West Africa Gas Pipeline to enable the thermal plants to operate effectively.