UG,GNPC sign $1m MoU to promote Petroleum Geosciences

Dr K. K. Sarpong,(left) and Prof. Oduro Owusu,(right) exchanging the agreement notes.Photo Michael Ayeh

Dr K. K. Sarpong,(left) and Prof. Oduro Owusu,(right) exchanging the agreement notes.Photo Michael Ayeh

The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) and the University of Ghana (UG) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to establish a one million dollar Research Chair in Petroleum Geosciences at the university.

The Chief Executive of GNPC, Dr. Kofi Koduah Sarpong and Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Ebenezer Oduro, sealed the pact at a signing ceremony in Accra yesterday.

The chair, to receive $250,000 each year for the initial four years, is to enhance research and education capacity in the field to support the optimal exploration, delineation and development of Ghana’s hydrocarbon resources.

It would also facilitate the sustainable development of Ghana’s hydrocarbon deposits and provide a reference point for developing similar technical capacity in Africa.

The scope of activities of the Chair include the establishment of technical partnerships with leading universities and industry players in African and beyond as well as exchange programmes with universities and institutions.

In collaboration with the industry, the chair is to establish an ultra-modern research laboratory in Petroleum Geosciences and coordinate related programmes at the graduate level.

Additionally, it is to facilitate the setting up of a Centre of Excellence in Ghana and Africa to produce professionals in geology and geophysics for the petroleum industries, as well as provide innovative solutions to issues in diverse sectors.


Dr.  Sarpong , recalling how long it took for the country to get oil due to lack of knowhow, said capacity building and technological advancement was crucial in the country’s quest to benefit from its huge petroleum potential.

He said through the education and training pillar of the GNPC foundation, the corporation would prioritise capacity building, saying “We believe that if we do not build capacity, we cannot bring the oil.”

Dr Sarpong added that seismic survey and chemistry analysis of the onshore Voltarian basin had shown that there was a working petroleum system in the area although unsure of the quantity.

“It is going to be a major game changer for this country if we are able to succeed in this search for hydrocarbon” he stated.

He said the company offered nearly 900 scholarships last year to tertiary students in the sciences and would continue to focus on this area for the next three years.

Stating the need for a strong link between industry and academic, he said the GNPC, has started building an ultra modern research and technology laboratory for further capacity building in geosciences.

Prof Oduro, for his part, said the partnership was one of the many initiatives the university had with institutions to enhance academic work , adding that the input from industry was crucial in getting a robust curricular.

He said the university was pursuing avenues to bridge the gap between industry and academia and that the partnership would further that aim. He hoped that both sides would play their roles well so posterity could benefit from it.

By Jonathan Donkor and Grace Baah


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