Nov. 1 (GIN) – A Dallas-based company and its partners have rejected a bid by Ghana’s state-owned oil company to buy back the U.S. company’s stake in Ghana’s Jubilee oil field, one of Africa’s largest oil deposits.
According to published reports, Kosmos Energy rebuffed Ghana’s bid, saying only that they decided to stay (in Ghana). Trouble with Ghana and the U.S. company boiled over last summer when Kosmos met secretly with the oil giant Exxon Mobil to sell its Jubilee stake without consulting Ghana which also owns a 13.75 percent stake in the field. Objections by Ghana scotched the $4 billion deal.
Ghana’s latest bid of $5 billion was made jointly with CNOOC, China’s National Offshore Oil Corporation and is the latest sign of Chinese interest in one of the most promising frontiers for offshore oil exploration.
The Asian giant has been showering Ghana’s government with gifts. Last September, China Export Import Bank loaned Ghana $10.4 billion for infrastructure projects, and the China Development Bank provided a separate $3 billion loan for the development of the country’s oil and gas sector.
Solomon Anzagra, in an editorial on Ghanaweb, wrote of the deals: “Nobody needs to be told that oil with democracy is the right dosage of medicine that Ghana needs for the treatment of its perennial sickness of many of her populace living under chronic poverty.
(But) Let us never forget that gold was once deemed necessary to give the country a name. Yet many years of extracting this natural endowment have not made any significant reflection in the lives of the majority peasants not even those whose family lands have been used in the extraction of it.”
He went on to urge Ghanaians “to draw knowledge from the experiences of other countries who discovered oil as a sign of prosperity but which ironically turned to be the source of their woes and despair.”
Ghana needs the right personnel, the right policies, and the right logistics. And all importantly the right attitude to ensure that what belongs to Ghana gets to Ghanaians.
With an estimated 1.8 billion barrels of crude, oil from Jubilee could supply all U.S. East Coast refineries for more than four years. w/pix of Ghana oil well.