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Egyapa Mercer: Africa must leverage its abundant gas resources to bridge poverty gap

The deputy energy minister also calls for the deployment of appropriate technologies to develop and make use of gas resources on the continent

The deputy energy minister Andrew Egyapa Mercer has called on African leaders to leverage the abundance of gas resources to bridge the poverty gap across the continent.

Egyapa Mercer made this call when he represented the Energy Minister, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, on an African ministerial panel during the ongoing Africa Oil Week in Dubai, UAE.

He called for the responsible exploitation of gas, as it is being held in trust for generations yet unborn. This, he said, would ensure that the economic value of the resource is sustained for a long time.

He said Ghana’s Gas Master Plan recognises the power sector as the most important sector to channel the natural gas resources. Currently, over 70% of the country’s fuel requirement for power generation is met by natural gas.

Egyapa Mercer called for attention to the legal and regulatory framework relating to exploitation of gas in various countries, as this could provide a basis that will lead to the resource being for the overall benefit of Africa’s peoples.

He also called for the deployment of appropriate technologies to develop and make use of gas as a resource.

Attractive destination

At a session on prospects in the upstream sector which took place during the conference, the chief executive officer of the Petroleum Commission, Egbert Faibille Jnr, walked prospective investors through Ghana’s legal and regulatory regime as well as its fiscal system, which makes the country an attractive destination for upstream investment.

He also gave an overview of blocks available for investment in the sector.

On his part, a deputy chief executive officer of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), Benjamin Acolatse, touched on the role of the national oil company in shaping petroleum agreements. He described their readiness to partner potential investors to exploit Ghana’s hydrocarbon resources.

The Ghanaian delegation continues to engage prospective investors and key players in the African oil and gas industries to position Ghana for investment.

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