By: Fred Yaw Sarpong- Daily Express
About 300 Ghanaian companies are currently engage in several services in the Oil and Gas industry in Ghana, according to Mr. Kwaku Boateng, the Director of Service at the Petroleum Commission in an interview with the Daily Express.
Mr. Boateng said before the commencement of oil exploration in Jubilee Field in 2010, the number of local companies were about 150, adding that currently there are about 300 Ghanaian firms providing services in Jubilee Field.
The Daily Express gathered that these companies mainly provided services such as catering, protocol services, provision of manpower services, fabrication, plumbers, straight forwarding, logistics and among others.
Mr. Boateng said the increase of Ghanaian participating companies in the industry indicate the well execution of Local Content Law in the sector.
“The industry is very young in Ghana. We discovered oil in 2007 but actual production started in 2010 and when you look at the enthusiasm and the level of participation by the local companies as compare to other countries that are in similar situation like Ghana, I will say that Ghanaian companies in the oil and gas industry have done very well,” he told Daily Express.
However, he mentioned that Ghanaian companies have failed to go into contracts such as great engineering, wire testing, wire logging which are still been handling by the foreign entities.
“We are anticipating that with the initiative of joint venture partnership between the foreign companies and the local ones there will be able to accelerate technology transfer so that Ghanaian companies can also move to more sophisticated areas such as engineering contract,” said Mr. Boateng.
He said Ghana’s Oil and Gas industry is highly sophisticated, highly technological capital intensive area and a company need a lot of money and sophisticated technology before such company can participate. “The standards are high and one need to be very careful not to make mistakes,” he added.
“We still have a long way to go in terms of Ghanaian companies improving their level of professionalism. They fall short in areas like raising huge capital for a big project in the industry. Most of the local firms cannot raise a minimum of about US$100 million as a capital for contract in the industry,” said Mr. Boateng.
He noted that most of the local companies usually face constrains in securing loan facility from the banks because they have refused to form partnership or consortium to work together. “What they should have done is to come together and raise such loan facility to compete among the multinationals in the industry,” he stated.
He reiterated that some of them also fall short in area of technical certification. “In this sector you need technical certification in order to be engage by these foreign companies. A lot of them failed in this area and its affecting them.”
“They even lack in business process and how to put management in place, health safety and environment and among others. These oil companies are multinationals and if they decided to do business with you, they will be sure that they are dealing with qualify and a genuine company. They want to see certain qualities in place in order to make sure that such a local company is a credible company.”
The attitudes of Ghanaian managers and their entities toward the delivering of services to the multinationals companies are also bad. He said some of them do not have a proper record of their activities. “With such a company don’t expect contract from a multinational company,” he emphasized.
He expects that the number of local company participating in the oil and gas will increase and their attitudes will also change.