The Chief Executive Officer of the Petroleum Commission (PC), Egbert Faibille Jnr, has affirmed the commitment of the Commission towards building the capacity of welders and other professionals for the country’s oil and gas sector.
He explained that, currently welders and other artisans did not get jobs within the sector due to the fact that, they did not have the training and certification to work in the sector.
Mr Faibille was speaking at a sensitisation programme held in Cape Coast under the Ghana Welding Bureau (GWB) for welders and students on the opportunities available with obtaining the requisite qualifications and certification.
The programme was attended by welders , students from technical training institutes and the Cape Coast Technical University (CCTU) as well as other stakeholders.
The Bureau is under the Accelerated Oil and Gas Capacity (AOGC) programme established to train people for the sector.
The GWB is an autonomous professional body, set up to regulate and develop the country’s welding industry among other things, certify and register companies and individuals involved in welding and allied operations.
Mr Faibille explained that majority of the welders lacked the technical expertise to survive the demands set by the Oil Companies.
The programme according to him, would guarantee the training of qualified personnel to fill that skill gap.
He further stated that the GWB was established to fill the gap in the oil and gas industry in terms of high demand for specialised welders as there was inadequate number of local welders with the requisite certifications to fill these roles.
The CEO of the PC indicated that nation’s upstream petroleum industry had lost huge revenues due to the non-availability of internationally certified welders despite the availability of local welders in the country.
He further said: “We will ensure that it is not only pipe fitting which is really fundamental to the energy industry or welding that will take us up but almost every job that wants craftsmen, technicians and technologists, we must pursue such that the training becomes domesticated”.
He said, more people need to be trained for the benefit of the economy due to the cost of recruiting expatriates for the sector.
He explained that the Bureau fell in line with the Accelerated Oil and Gas Building Programme, to train Ghanaians to international standards to replace expatriates in the upstream petroleum sector.
Under it, he indicated that, there would education, training, qualification, and certification of personnel involved in welding technology and allied technologies through the exchange of requisite information.
In a presentation, he Manager of AOGC programme at the Petroleum Commission, Mustapha Hameed, said there was opportunities for welders within the oil industry.
The programme, he said, would unearth the opportunities for Ghanaians at the mid and low-level technicians in the oil and gas industry.
FROM DAVID O. YARBOI-TETTEH, CAPE COAST