Sipa Yankey
Sipa Yankey

Ghana?s dream of producing natural gas to cut the millions of dollars the Volta River Authority and other agencies spend in purchasing crude daily for power generation has finally come to fruition as the ongoing Western Corridor Gas Infrastructure project at Atuabo in the Western Region is set to be completed by the end of this month, March 31, 2014.
Announcing the new date after interacting with the media following a meeting of the Task Force set up to see to the early completion of the project, the Minister of Energy and Petroleum, Mr. Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah, said the Atuabo Gas Processing Plant, started in the last quarter of 2011 is expected to start production in June or July this year.

He said the plant would start operating immediately after its completion after tests are carried out on the pipe lines to find out whether there were leakages.

The noble project, a brainchild of the late President John Evans Atta Mills and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) government couldn?t have seen the light of day without the hard work and commitment of the presidential task force led by Dr Kwesi Botwe, management and workers of the Ghana National Gas Company under the able leadership of Dr Gerorge Adja Sipa Yankey, the contractors; SINOPEC, the Chinese government ?for making funds available, the Ministry of Energy and most importantly President John Dramani Mahama for his personal and special interest in the completion of the project.

The Al-Hajj salutes all persons, particularly the young Ghanaian engineers ?who worked around the clock to ensure that the over 850 million dollar world class gas infrastructure, which is only second to the Akosombo dam in terms of magnitude, investments and expected returns finally come to fruition. We say Ayekoo.

The completion of this gigantic project is timely in the history of the country, especially at a time when the nation is faced with tough challenges in the power sector. It is expected that the project would half the $2million dollars a day the VRA spend in purchasing crude oil for power generation.

The Atuabo plant is expected to receive 140 million Standard Cubic Feet of raw gas per day from the Jubilee Oilfield. The plant would then separate raw gas into various components as well as other mineral residues like propane, bitumen and others.

The Gas Infrastructure Project, which is the largest project the NDC government has embarked on in the past five years would involve receiving gas from the oil and gas fields in the Tano (Western) Basin.

Ghana gas
Ghana gas

The overall goal of the project as contained in the GNGC website is to ?ensure that natural gas, associated gas and NGLs produced in Ghana are effectively and efficiently processed into clean fuels and feedstock for domestic and export market, promote the development of petrochemical industries, substantially reduce and/or eliminate flaring of gas, and develop Western Region of Ghana as a new economic growth pole for the country in the long term.

The initial gas to be processed will come from the Jubilee field which is located approximately 50km offshore Ghana, in the Western Region.?

The Al-Hajj once again salutes the late President Mills for conceiving the idea and indeed starting it before his unfortunate demise.

The paper also commends President Mahama for showing special interest in the project and ensured that government fulfilled its financial obligations to the supervising company, the GNGC under the leadership of Dr Sipa Yankey and the task force led Dr Kwesi Botwe, to complete it on time.

As we celebrate this gallant men for their steadfastness, mentioned must also be made of the contractors, SINOPEC, the Chinese government and the China Development Bank for releasing part of the $3 billion CDB Loan to speed up the completion.

Also, The Al-Hajj thanks the Chiefs and people of Atuabo and the Western region. We also laud the Energy Minister and his deputies together with workers at the Ministry for their interest in the project.

The Al-Hajj also says Ayekoo to the young Ghanaian engineers who worked on the project and the numerous artisans who risked their lives to ensure Ghana gets this magnificent world class gas infrastructure project.

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