Business groups and associations must find it necessary to institute a platform for members to brainstorm on how Ghanaian firms can maximize opportunities in the emerging petroleum industry.
This is the view of Ghanaian economist, Dr. Joe Amoako-Tuffour, who believes local businesses can only cope with the changing economic environment by forming strategic alliances to tap into the benefits of Ghana's oil and gas find.
He has particularly challenged the Chamber of Commerce and Industry to “raise the level of their game” to ensure the oil exploration benefits the non-oil sector, “otherwise for places outside the Western Region, the economy can collapse completely”.
Dr. Amoako-Tuffour was delivering a public lecture on the theme: “the Benefits from Ghana's Oil and Gas Resources”, organized by the Kumasi Polytechnic.
The Professor of Economics at the St. Francis Xavier University in Novo-Scotia, Canada, said it is high time industry started asking questions on what the oil and gas industry mean for the future of agriculture, employment and human capital development.
“How do you see yourself in the 10, 20 years down the road in light of this changing economy? It is no longer the usual agric and service and manufacturing; now you have a sizeable countervailing sector which is petroleum; and labour mobility, labour market is going to change. So if you're running a business here, how do you cope? How does it affect you and how are you preparing yourself to survive for the next 10-20 years? Dr. Amoako-Tuffour quizzed in an interview with Luv Biz Report.
He said the creation of an 'Ideas Forum' is valuable in an attempt to ensure businesses are well-positioned to prospect the oil and gas resources.
Dr Amoako-Tuffuor also emphasized that the oil and gas fields have the potential to propel Ghana's socio-economic growth if the revenues are efficiently used for the benefit of the citizenry.
Meanwhile, Rector of the Kumasi Polytechnic, Prof. Nicholas Nsowah-Nuamah says the institution is on course to commence its Petrochemical Engineering programme next academic year to support capacity-building and human resource development for the emerging oil and gas industry.
Story by Kofi Adu Domfeh/Luv FM/Ghana