The government realized $666m out of its targeted revenue of $1.5 billion from the upstream petroleum industry for the year 2020 due to the impact of COVID-19.
The drop in the targeted revenue was also attributed to the low oil prices on the international market.
The Manager, Project Evaluation at Petroleum Commission (PC), Ebenezer Harmah, disclosed this at Sekondi on Monday, at a stakeholders’ meeting with the Western Region House of Chiefs attended by the Minister of Energy, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, and the Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs Minister, Mr. Kojo Kum.
Mr. Harmah explained that since the pandemic broke in the country in 2020, there had been a significant drop in crude oil price arising out of demand shock, increased cost of operation, impact on exploration and appraisal investments, investment attraction, and local content development.
The PC, he said, had proposed that the government support producing fields to ensure that production rates were not affected, take proactive steps to mitigate the impact of COVID- 19 at the upstream industry and also engage all affected contractors to map out contingency strategies.
Mr. Harmah suggested that strategies, including the resumption of suspended operations, aggressive reserve replacement to drive accelerated sustained exploration and sustained investment attraction, to promote Ghana’s sedimentary basin for future licensing.
There could also be direct negotiations for open acreages and petroleum agreements under negotiations.
On the current oil production profile, the Evaluation Manager told the House that three fields had been developed and produced since the inception of commercial oil discovery to date, namely Jubilee, Tweneboa Enyera Ntomme (TEN) and Off Cape Three Point (OCTP).
However, Mr. Harmah explained that “Ghana risks production decline if no further reserves are developed.”
He continued: “Reserves replacement is very imperative for the sustained industry. Indeed, reserves need to mature aggressively.”
For the Jubilee Fields, he said, the recoverable reserve was 642 million barrels (mmbl) and production since inception to March 2021 was 319 mmbbl, with total gas export of 154 Billion Standard Cubic Feet (BSCF).
“The TEN Field has produced 93mmbl out of the 195 mmbl as of March 2021, while total gas export is 16bscf during the period. SGN/OCTP Field has a recoverable reserve of 205 mmbl of oil and condensate and 1.07 Trillion Cubic Feet (TCF) of Non-Associated Gas (NAG).
“Production from inception to March 2021 is 56mmbl and 138 BSCF of NAG. Total gas export as of March 2021 is 112 BSCF,” Mr Harmah added.
Concerning ongoing exploration works, he mentioned that AMNI was to conduct geological studies and drilling planned for last quarter of 2021 while ECO was also involved in a drilling campaign initially planned for July 2020 but were postponed due to COVID 19.
He said these, however, were expected to begin in 2022.
The Voltain basin also has the largest unexplored inland basin in Ghana, covering about 103,400 sq km, 40 percent of the landmark of Ghana, and that currently, the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation was conducting reconnaissance survey of that area.