11.04.2005 General News

Petroleum tender board calls for strategic reserve

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Tema, April 11, GNA - The National Petroleum Tender Board (NPTB) has suggested the establishment of a strategic reserve for fuel against crisis period.

This, however, requires the injection of more funds to make it practicable, Professor Ivan Addae-Mensah, chairman of the NPTB said on Monday.

He said this when he led members of the board to inspect constructional work at the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) and the completion of the rehabilitation work on pipelines damaged by the Good Friday fire outbreak at the PSC Tema Shipyard.

The fire, which claimed 17 lives, also destroyed the Refinery's pump house and conveyer belts belonging to the Volta Aluminium Company. Prof. Addae-Mensah advocated the increment of levy on the Bulk Oil Storage and Transport (BOST) Company for storage of fuel that could last the nation for a longer period in the event of crisis. He said for instance if TOR had spent a longer time to rehabilitate its damaged pipeline the nation could have resorted to the strategic stock.

He commended TOR for completing the rehabilitation of the pipelines in two weeks, just a head of the stipulated three-week period after which the nation could plunge into fuel crisis.

He said TOR was considering constructing a pipeline from the plant to Kpong Water Works to tap untreated water for cooling. Prof Addae-Mensah called for the enforcement of regulations on encroachment around the periphery of the TOR.

A fuel tanker, "Ocean Liberty," last Friday docked at the Tema port to discharge 30,000 tonnes of gas oil, indicating the start of full operation by TOR.

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