Ghana has traditionally been a rich country in minerals, with the industry dominated by gold, diamond, bauxite and manganese. Ghana is the world’s 10th gold producer, and Africa’s 2nd after South Africa. From 2000 – 2005 gold made up 33% of the country’s total goods exports.
In 2007, significant oil reserves were discovered offshore. Commercial extraction of the Jubilee field, as it is now known, began in December 2010.
EITI status: Compliant
Visit Ghana’s EITI page
EITI, IMF, Revenue Watch Institute
PWYP Ghana has long been an active player in the implementation of EITI in Ghana, including the ongoing completion of Validation. PWYP-Ghana been calling for national legislation on EITI, believing this will ease access to contracts, as well as to information on extractive sector revenue generation and use. Following some initial reluctance on this matter, the Multi-stakeholder Steering Committee has now conceded to the need for EITI legislation in Ghana. ISODEC, PWYP-Ghana’s organisational host, has been mandated to work with the expert panel to develop a Terms of Reference to revise the draft EITI bill it had proposed, taking into account concerns raised at a consensus-building workshop on EITI legislation.
Another major development in recent months is the public proclamation by the President of the Republic of Ghana, His Excellency Prof. Evans Atta Mills, reiterating his personal commitment to contract transparency and for the need to extend EITI to the country’s emerging oil and gas sector. These statements were made last year during an official visit to Ghana by the World Bank Vice President for Africa, Obiageli Ezekwesili, and they will lead to a reform of the national EITI governance structure.
In March 2010, the Research and Advocacy Organizations (RAO) network, the Kasa fraternity, Publish What You Pay-Ghana, the Coalition on Human Rights Oil and Gas, and the Regional Extractive Industries Knowledge Hub (REIKHUB) agreed to forge a common front, rallying under the banner of the ‘National CSO Oil and Gas Platform’ to interface with policy, legislative and regulatory processes in the emerging oil and gas industries in Ghana. The CSO Oil and Gas Platform will facilitate coordination of the different organisations’ activities and work to promote common positions on all issues relating to governance of the country’s petroleum sector. Later on that same month, the newly created Platform had the opportunity to take its first action when the Ministry of Finance, currently drafting a National Petroleum Resource Revenue Management Bill, was accused of allowing too little consultation. In reaction to a public reproach from the CSO Platform, the Ministry made the proposal available online, with a questionnaire soliciting views on various aspects of the management of future oil and gas revenues.
Another issue that has occupied the attention of the coalition in recent months is the lack of public consultation on the proposed draft National Petroleum Regulatory Authority Bill. Presently, regulatory responsibilities are split between a number of government agencies: the Ministry of Energy, Ghana National Petroleum Company, National Petroleum Authority, and Energy Commission. There are fears that this situation will lead to duplication of roles and responsibilities and lack of clarity, and even that the overlapping of functions may lead to departmental conflicts of interest.
Furthermore, the GNPC, which was established by law as a commercial entity has been assigned some regulatory functions (justified on the basis of its accumulated technical competence). This is seen to fly in the face of international best practice. PWYP-Ghana called for the separation of GNPC’s commercial from its regulatory functions – a call which was subsequently heeded by the government in its revised draft National Petroleum Regulatory Authority bill.
The coalition’s concern now is how to ensure the independence of the future regulator, so that it is able to resist undue executive influence in championing the national interest. This no doubt has implications for how it is to be funded, for the security of tenure of its head, and key staff. The coalition’s criticism of the previous proposal to have the Chief Executive Officer of GNPC represented on the Board of the Authority (on the grounds of the conflict of interest it creates) has led to the proposal being dropped.
Last Update 10.06.10