THE consumption of petroleum products in the country, surged by five million metric tonnes (Mt) last year, the Chief Executive Officer of National Petroleum Authority (NPA), Hassan Tampuli, has disclosed.
The 15 per cent increase was from 3.4million Mt recorded in 2017 to 3.9 million Mt in 2018, he said at the ongoing 3rd edition of the Ghana International Petroleum Conference (GhIPCon) 2019, in Accra.
He attributed this to efforts towards curbing illicit fuel activities, coupled with deliberate technology based schemes and policy initiatives aimed at propelling private sector growth.
He said the petroleum sector had contributed over GHȼ86 billion to Ghana’s GDP, representing an average of about eight per cent per annum in the period 2013 to 2018.
These successes, Mr Tampuli said, were achieved despite the many challenges in the industry, including smuggling via unapproved offshore routes and dumping of Gasoil declared for sale to foreign vessels at local filling stations.
Others, he said, were under-declaration and non-declaration of products lifted at depots; diversion of subsidised social products such as premix fuel, as well as fraudulent freight claims from some transporters.
These “nefarious activities”, he said, cost the country about $200million per annum of tax revenue while compromising on product quality at filling stations.
According to Mr Tampuli, “the Unified Petroleum Price Fund (UPPF) also recorded about US12million losses per annum”.
In addressing the stated challenges, he said the NPA had rolled out a series of measures in collaboration with the Ghana Revenue Authority, Ghana Navy and other relevant security agencies in the country.
He said digital solutions such as Enterprise Relational Database Management Software, Petroleum Products Marking Scheme and Bulk Road Vehicle Tracking project had been intensified.
Mr Tampuli urged participants to use the GhIPCon platform to deliberate on, and find solutions to pressing issues in the sector to ensure efficiency in the Ghana petroleum downstream industry.
The Vice President,
BY TIMES REPORTER