Ranking Member on Parliament’s Mines and Energy Committee, John Jinapor says that government does not have any strategy in place to avert the imminent fuel crisis in the country.
His assertion comes after Bloomberg reported that Ghana faces a looming fuel shortage as the central bank rations dollars after oil prices surged following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Reacting to this development, Mr Jinapor stated that “we knew this was coming”, adding that this information is not a new phenomenon.
“Since last year even before post-Covid we knew we had challenges,” he added.
Speaking in an interview on Joy FM’s Top Story on Tuesday, Mr Jinapor questioned government’s plans to address the fuel conundrum.
“In all these situations, the critical question is what is the government’s position? What is the government’s strategy? What is the government’s plan for the future?
“I don’t mind even if I have to sacrifice for one month or two months, but do we have light at the end of the tunnel or it is going to be the same situation where we keep increasing fuel prices and blaming it on the currency when we know that our currency has fallen by over 25% this year alone. Fuel prices have increased about 100% this year alone, inflation is about 30%. This is an economic problem,” he stressed.
He advocated for the revival of the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) as well as the equipping of the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company to help control the rapid rise in fuel prices.
He contended that even if an accounting loss is recorded at TOR, an economic profit will undoubtedly be recorded.
“What are we doing with Tema Oil Refinery? Ghana produces more than 200,000 barrels of crude oil daily. In all the petroleum agreements, we have the right to exercise that right to keep that crude here and process it,” he explained.
Meanwhile, the Chief Executive of the Ghana Chamber of Bulk Oil Distributors, Senyo Hosi has said despite the looming danger of fuel shortage in the country, stakeholders are working to address the significant problem.
In addition, the Ministry of Energy has admitted that the current persistent increments in fuel prices are a big challenge for them.
“Mr Speaker, indeed it has been a challenge, this is a worldwide phenomenon that is happening,” he said.
The Deputy Energy Minister, William Owuraku Aidoo, speaking on the floor of Parliament on Wednesday said even though the increase has been a change they are working assiduously to address it.
He entreated the public to hope that the steps that have been taken by the government to address the increase in petroleum products “will continue to afford us enough supply of petroleum in this country.”
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