The Energy Minister, Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh has said that Africa sits on vast oil and gas reserves.
He disclosed this at the North Africa and Europe Energy Exhibition and Conference (NAEPEC) 2023 during an exclusive interview for him to further share his thoughts on Africa’s position on the energy transition conversation in the context of Africa’s continuous push for the conversation to be had cognizant of the African continent’s economic situation.
Dr. Prempeh according to the organisers is a recognized thought-leader on Africa’s position on energy transition and occupies a central position in the African narrative.
Dr. Prempeh told host, Rad Kim, that, Africa is cognizant of the advocacy for energy transition and cleaner energy but then he believed the conversation must be had within a careful context, which is the reality of the current stage of Africa’s current circumstances and growth trajectory.
“In the West African subregion alone, in countries like Senegal, Nigeria, Cameroon and Ghana, gas will be a game changer in providing cheaper access to power and ultimately driving industrialization”
He continued “this in turn creates employment and business opportunities both in the upstream and downstream petroleum sector. It also sustains the huge investments that have been made by these countries in skills training of their citizens to respond to the specific exigencies of this specialized industry”
The Minister further argued that the fact remains that gas, especially Africa’s Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) is the cleanest of fossil fuel, and harnessing it to power generators can make a huge impact on the drive to accelerate universal coverage. Ghana he said, intends to rely heavily on gas as its transition fuel to propel economic growth.
The Manhyia South lawmaker also said Ghana stands as a beacon for the African continent with energy access of 88.75% and is ready to become the energy hub of the West African sub-region by leading the agenda for providing reliable and sustainable energy to stimulate socio-economic growth.
Dr. Prempeh called for collaboration among African countries to foster a united front towards the utilisation and exploitation of natural resources
The interview will be part of a post-conference info-documentary that will be aired in April on NAEPEC platforms across the globe.
The Minister continues to hold strategic meetings on the sidelines of the conference to attract massive investment into the country’s energy sector.