Aker Energy announces US$4.5m support for capacity building

Mr. Egbert Faibille Jnr., Acting CEO of Petroleum Commission, displays the plaque, as the wife of Vice-President Samira Bawumia, Deputy Energy Minister and some Board members look on

Aker Energy, operator of the Deepwater Tano Cape Three Points (DWT/ CTP), has announced a US$4.5million support for government’s Accelerated Oil and Gas Capacity-Building Programme (AOGC) aimed at equipping Ghanaians with the right skill-sets needed in the oil and gas sector.

The AOGC runs for five years and is expected to train individuals in various technical and vocational areas, as well as build the capacity of selected educational institutions to train students and provide internationally-recognised certificates.

The programme will also provide business and management training for Small and Medium Enterprises while ensuring continuous professional development for employees of various public institutions in the oil and gas sector.

The initiative is expected to benefit at least 1,000 Ghanaians who will be trained to be gainfully employed in the oil and gas industry, with about 300 employees in public institutions also to be adequately equipped for meeting international standards.

Speaking at the official announcement ceremony, the Vice-President’s wife – Hajia Samira Bawumia – said the programme is part of government’s move to ensure local content in the oil and gas sector.

“President Nana Akufo-Addo came out with this initiative as part of efforts to build local capacity and provide opportunity for young people to work in the oil and gas sector,” she said.

She said they will ensure that the funds are used for the programme’s success and sustainability so as to benefit future generations.

She commended Aker Energy – a global leader in the oil and gas industry – for supporting government’s laudable initiative, which was launched in November 2017 at the Regional Maritime University.

“We hope other companies will come on board to support such initiatives aimed at providing training and employment for the Ghanaian youth,” she said.

She urged youth to take advantage of the programme and help develop the country’s oil and gas sector.

Launching Aker Energy’s Support, Country Manager for the outfit, Mr. Jan Helge Skogen, said human capital is very essential in the oil and gas sector; and developing Ghanaian competence in the sector will make Ghana compete favourably at the global level.

“It all starts with education and competency building, the main pillars of the AOGC programme. Aker Energy’s goal is that through our operations in Ghana, we will support development of the oil and gas sector, “he stressed.

“Under the AOGC, we will seek support from and utilise Ghanaian educational institutions to increase competency levels through a training of local trainers programme,” he added.

The company, he said, wants to get a lot out of the US$4.5million contribution, and is confident that this will happen through the project framework and good cooperation already established between the Petroleum Commission and Aker Energy.

Egbert Faibille Jnr, acting Chief Executive Officer-the Petroleum Commission, said the AOGC programme aims to deliberately and strategically train Ghanaian youth to work in Ghana and elsewhere – from exploration through to decommissioning.

He said the involvement of Ghanaians in the upstream sector is expected to rise to levels that will prove the AOGC is the boldest attempt by any government to ensure Ghanaians take their rightful place in the industry.

Prof. Elvis Nyarko, Vice-Chancellor of the Regional Maritime University who chaired the ceremony, commended Aker for the support to enhance technical and vocational skills of Ghanaians.

“This is a huge platform to get manpower for the country, and we are always assured of continuous support by the Norwegian government; as they have been with the country since oil has been discovered,” he stated.

“We can as a country do more, and like other corporate entities must follow Aker’s support. We also commend the government of Ghana for ensuring the president’s vision has come to reality,” he added.

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