Business News of 2014-08-23

Weston Oil and Gas Fund launched

A new mutual fund that will help develop the country’s oil and gas industry has been launched in Accra.

Known as the Weston Oil and Gas (WOG) Fund, its initial public offer is now available to the general public and institutional investors.

The fund, launched by Western Capital as a limited liability company incorporated in Ghana, continues to raise funds and is expected to reach an initial target size of GH¢50 million within the first 12 months.

According to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Western Capital, Mr Rex Kontor, the fund will support the drive for local participation in the oil and gas industry by helping to build the capacity of local companies operating in the sector.

He said the fund would also create an avenue for individuals and corporate entities to participate in the success story of the oil and gas industry by creating an investment vehicle for them.

Mr Kontor said the fund sought to create an avenue for multinationals and support agencies to channel sustainable investments into helping to build the capacity of local suppliers and service providers to deliver industry- required international standards.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Bulk Oil Distributors, Mr Senyo Kwasi Hosi, said Ghanaians’ high expectation of the impact of the oil and gas sector on the economy would ever remain an expectation that would not be met unless the knowledge, participation and infrastructure gap was significantly bridged and driven by the Ghanaian.

He said equity and debt funding continued to be a challenge for the industry. The introduction of specialised products such as the Weston Oil and Gas Fund was timely and necessary to drive the growth of the entire sector.

According to him, much value is lost out of the economy as key sectors continue to have less local participation and the remarkable value often lost will be retained on the country’s shores as the WOG Fund positions itself as a strategic driver for investments in the oil and gas sector.

“The Ghanaian economy may be kick-started by the foreign investor but its sustenance, growth and drive to the desired goal can only be done by the Ghanaian whose participation and ownership will yield the desired exponential effect,’’ he said.

For his part, the Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Mr Adu Antwi, said the introduction of the Weston Fund in the Ghanaian capital market offered investors an additional avenue to place funds for management and increase the diversity of the market in terms of products.

He said the fund was licensed by SEC as a mutual fund and was solely dedicated to supporting companies in the oil and gas industry and would focus on investing in majority-owned Ghanaian companies that provided services to the oil and gas industry.

Source: graphic.com
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