Japanese firm to help Ghana boost gas infrastructure development

Japanese multinational Mitsui & Co has signed an agreement to work with the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) on developing infrastructure to boost the production of natural gas in the country and to study proposals for building a second natural gas processing plant.
Under the terms of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the state-owned GNPC, Mitsui will act as ‘facilitator and adviser’ in pre-tender feasibility studies aimed at developing infrastructure for processing gas from Ghana’s offshore Tano basin.
Mitsui will also assess how best to construct a second processing plant for raw natural gas from the Tano basin. Ghana’s deputy minister of petroleum Benjamin Dagadu said the MOU followed an earlier technical and financial presentation that Mitsui had given to the petroleum and finance ministries.
Dagadu, a former GNPC manager with experience of working on projects including the development of the Tano basin, said it was hoped that the co-operation between GNPC and Mitsui could lead to ‘an even bigger partnership.’
According to the petroleum ministry, GNPC has already conducted initial studies into the production of gas from fields in addition to Tano and the exploration of new fields.
The commissioning earlier this year of Ghana’s first gas processing plant, the $800 million Atuabo facility, has been described by the government as ‘a game changer’ for the country’s economy.
The government said the plant will produce four different products from the raw or wet gas it will receive. Atuabo alone is expected to save the country ‘almost half a billion dollars a year in light crude purchases, and another billion dollars in foreign exchange savings for the purchase of light crude oil,’ the government said. This is because the Volta River Authority, the main generator and supplier of electricity in Ghana, would be able to purchase the gas in local currency.

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