The Government of Ghana has completed the mapping of nine extra oil blocks in the Western Region.

Three of the blocks according to government, are to be allocated through open competitive tender.

Whereas two will be given through restricted tender, while the remaining four will be handed over to the national oil company, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC).

The Minister of Energy, Mr Boakye Agyarko, disclosed this in an interview with Graphic Business on the sidelines of the 50th Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston, Texas.

He mentioned that, with the support of Consolidated Shipping Agencies (Conship), 15 local companies are participating within the Ghanaian pavilion set up at the event ground.

This he revealed as the plan of government to undertake an aggressive exploration of the country’s oil reserves within its territorial waters.

According to him, while maximising the oil and gas potential of the country, government also plans to test the law to ascertain its suitability or amendment depending on the outcome of what it intends to do.

He explained that the Petroleum Exploration and Production Act which had been enacted into law allowed for open competitive bidding.

The law, he said, also allowed for the minister to give certain acreages when he deemed that to be in the interest of the nation.

It also allows the GNPC to be allocated blocks for its own exploration.

According to him, government was committed to aggressive exploration.

That, he explained, “was because the more discoveries you make, the more you replace the oil and you are assured of continuous prosperity, and that is what we seek to do. It is aggressive exploration that finds new oil.

He indicated that by the end of the year, government should be doing 200,000 barrels per day.

” We are hopeful that with BP and Ake coming over, in the next two years of production, they should be able to add another 400,000 barrels per day. So Ghana should be doing 600,000 a day to help boost development,” he said.

Report by: Stephanie Horsu