Shareholders of Ghana Oil Company Limited (GOIL) have approved decision of the board for the company to partner US oil and gas giant, ExxonMobil, to explore oil from Deep Water Cape Three Point (DW/OTCP) block in the Western Region Of Ghana.
The shareholders gave the company the greenlight at the company’s 50th Annual General Meeting in Accra, capital of Ghana.
GOIL, in November last year, signed a joint operating agreement with ExxonMobil after the latter was given the Deep Water Cape Three Point oil block for exploration.
The agreement between GOIL and ExxonMobil followed the completion of an elaborate and a rigorous due diligence by ExxonMobil.
The agreement was sealed after ‘no objection’ approval from the Government of Ghana, represented by the Ministry of Energy.
ExxonMobil’s selection of GOIL was in compliance of Ghana’s Local Content and Local Participation Regulation 2013 (LI 2204), which stipulates a 5 per cent stake reserved for a local entity.
Speaking to energynewsafrica.com in an interview during GOIL’s 50th Annual General Meeting in Accra, Group Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director for GOIL, Mr Patrick Akpe Kwame Akorli said they were excited about the shareholders’ decision to approve the partnership.
” It’s an excitement “, he said.
He said having 50th AGM means that the company has come far, saying ” you can’t be doing the same thing all the time when you’re competing with about 80 oil marketing companies, some of which are multinationals”.
In his view, the petroleum downstream which GOIL finds itself is now chocked, explaining that management had developed a strategic plan which captures some other areas the company can take advantage to expand.
He argued that there was the need for local companies to venture into the upstream industry instead of leaving it for only the multinational companies to operate.
“Multinationals cannot becoming here to do business while we sit aloof. Some of the local companies need to move out there”, he suggested.
GOIL is expected to make an expenditure of about $25 million over a period of five years, as their contribution to oil exploration activities in the Deep Water Cape Three Point.
Asked whether they have done assessment and are hopeful that their investments would not go waste, Mr Patrick Akorli responded in the affirmative, adding that they have been given strongest assurance by ExxonMobil that they would strike oil in the block.
Mr Akorli assured shareholders that the investment would be profitable venture and would also lead to capacity building for its staff and Ghanaians in the oil upstream sector.
“Oil exploration is always a risky business but there’s a good chance of ExxonMobil striking oil in Ghana…it gives GOIL workers and engineers the chance to be trained for the upstream business, because the upstream business is expanding but the local content is not being felt, so we as indigenous marketing company thought well, it’s our to try it”, he added.