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Ghanaian President Calls New Natural Gas Plant a “Game-Changer”

Mahama says new plant due online in December is “more important than finding oil”

Ghanaian President John Dramani Mahama

Ghanaian President John Dramani Mahama

Ghanaian President John Dramani Mahama proclaimed, during a visit to the new natural gas plant in Atuabo, that the plant is even more important than oil because of its multiplier effect in terms of job creation and in terms of its importance to Ghana’s energy security.

Ghana’s expected windfall from its recent discovery of oil has proven harder than expected to harvest. The oil in Ghana produces a lot of natural gas, which limits the number of barrels a day oil companies can process. This new plant will not only be able to increase the amount of oil they can process, but will also enter Ghana into the natural gas market.

The plant, which will produce 500 megawatts of electricity, is expected to save the treasury $500m each year in crude oil imports. More importantly for the citizens of Ghana, the new plant should stem the tide of the power-blackouts, which have become increasingly frequent in recent years.

According to the World Bank, Ghana will need a further $4bn over the next 10 years to keep up with its project power demands. This investment is likely to come in the form of bond sales and if interest rates continue to remain high, repayments may become increasingly difficult for the treasury.

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