Korean Oil Company expresses interest in Jubilee fields, Tuesday, March 25, 2010 (spread)

The Korea National Oil Corporation (KNOC) has expressed interest in acquiring stakes in the Jubilee Oil Fields currently in the hands of Kosmos Energy.
A delegation from the KNOC led by its President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr Young-Won Kang, made this known when it paid a courtesy call on the Minister of Energy, Dr Joe Oteng-Adjei, at the Ministry.
KONC is in the country at the invitation of the Vice-President, Mr John Dramani Mahama, to partner and offer technical support to the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) in the oil and gas industry.
KNOC is the national oil and gas company of South Korea and a vital industrial company in that country and currently has investments in more than 20 oil and gas fields across 14 countries which include Libya, Nigeria, Peru, Vietnam, Russia, Canada, Indonesia, Yemen and Kazakhstan.
Mr Young-Won Kang said the company would work with the GNPC to ensure that the two institutions achieved the desired results for Ghana and promote the mutual interest of the two countries.
He said Korea did not see its investment in Ghana as a short-term move but remained committed to ensuring that parts of its profits were reinvested in the development of its host country.
The company also operates two oil production fields in Vietnam and South Korea and has a gross capacity to stock some 121 million barrels of oil and gas in nine storage facilities in South Korea.
Receiving the delegation, Dr Oteng-Adjei said the government was committed to being transparent in the oil and gas sector and would not burden investors in any way that would lead to corrupt practices.
Dr Oteng-Adjei noted that all rules concerning the industry would be opened and backed by integrity, stating that “the rules will be clear and simple”.
He said the key principles on which the country’s oil sector would be managed were based on transparency, job creation and technology transfer and environmental protection.
“As a country, local content and job creation is very important to us. Together with the GNPC, you have to put in the framework and design to bring our people up to the skills required to work in the oil and gas industry.”
He expressed joy that the KNOC, a company that started from the scratch, was interested in partnering the GNPC and was hopeful that the partnership would propel the GNPC to become a key player in the oil and gas sector in Africa.
He said although a number of challenges confronted the oil and gas sector in the country, he was optimistic that the KNOC had the expertise to help deal with them.
On the environment, he said the company would have to replicate environmental standards it adhered to in the international arena in Ghana.
“One of the things we have observed is that most of these big companies obey all international rules but when you come to our part of the world, then you begin to renege,” he noted.
Dr Oteng-Adjei indicated that the country would not adopt fast-track approaches that would ensure that the investors recoup their investment while leaving the country in distress.
“We would use optimum methods to ensure that the production and distribution of the resource can last as long as possible and be of benefit to the country,” he stated.

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