Full-scale natural gas production starts next month

Dr George Sipa-YankeyGhana is set to commence full-scale production of natural gas on April 1, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Gas Company Limited, Dr. Sipa Yankey, has said.

Dr. Yankey, who disclosed this during a meeting with Parliament’s Committee on Government Assurances yesterday, expressed the company’s readiness to produce natural gas in abundance for power generation.

The CEO said the production of natural gas would end the era of importing crude oil to power the plants which, according to him, costs the state huge sums of money.

Touching on the benefits of the US$1 billion gas project, Dr. Yankey said gas would reduce the cost of producing electricity by half, and would save the nation millions of dollars.

Also, he said the country’s balance of payment would look bright with the production of gas, and explained that the amount of money that would be used to import crude oil to power the electricity plants would be substantially reduced.

That, he said, could make the local currency strong and shore up the country’s reserves, since monies would no longer be exchanged into foreign currency to import crude oil

Dr. Yankey said the gas project would create more jobs, adding that other sectors of the economy would benefit indirectly from the sector.

He told the committee, chaired by Emmanuel Kwasi Bedzrah (NDC Ho West) that, the farmers in the Western Region whose farms were affected by the gas project had been adequately compensated by his company.

On the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), he said thousands of the indigenes in the communities where Ghana Gas operates have been registered under the National Health Insurance Scheme, adding that, the company has constructed playing grounds for schools in the area, and is in the process of putting up a hospital for the communities.

He said a number of engineers have been sent abroad for training as part of the efforts to ensure that the gas sector is managed entirely by Ghanaians in the near future.

The Minister of Petroleum, Kofi Armah Buah, said his ministry is working closely with the power ministry to resolve the power challenges and indicated that the two ministries meet frequently with other stakeholders to deliberate on how the crises would be resolved.

He said the ministry is in the process of laying pipelines throughout the country for the distribution of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) to every region and district.

He said the ministry is also working to ensure that in future, buildings and households will obtain direct supply of LPG into their kitchens, and added that the interventions are part of the Gas Master Plan.

By Yaw Kyei 

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