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Aker Energy has announced a 4.5 million dollar support for government's Accelerated Oil and Gas Capacity-Building Programme (AOGC) aimed at enhancing the capacity of Ghanaians to enable them work in the oil and gas sector.
The programme, to be in effect for five years, would train individuals in various technical and vocational areas, build the capacity of educational institutions to train students and provide internationally recognized certificates.
Additionally, the programme will provide business and management training for Small and Medium Enterprises and ensure the continuous professional development of employees of various public institutions in the oil and gas sector.
In all, 1,000 Ghanaians are expected to be trained to be gainfully employed in the oil and gas industry, with about 300 employees in public institutions to also be adequately equipped to meet international standards.
Hajia Samira Bawumia, the Second Lady, who was the Guest Speaker at the official announcement of the Aker Energy's support, said the programme was part of government's move to ensure local content in the oil and gas sector.
"President Nana Akufo-Addo came out with this initiative as part of efforts to build local capacity and provide opportunity for young people to work in the oil and gas sector," she said.
She said they would ensure that the funds were used for the success and sustainability of the programme to benefit future generations.
She commended Aker Energy, a global leader in the oil and gas industry, for supporting government's laudable initiative, which was launched in November 2017 at the RMU.
"We hope other companies would come on board to support such initiatives aimed at providing training and employment for the Ghanaian youth," she said.
She urged the youth to take advantage of the programme and help the country to develop the oil and gas sector.
Launching Aker Energy's Support, Country Manager for the outfit, Mr. Jan Helge Skogen said human capital was very essential in the oil and gas sector and developing Ghanaian competence in the sector would make Ghana to compete favourably at the global level.
"It all starts with education and competency building, the main pillars of the AOGC programme. Aker Energy's goal is that through our operations in Ghana, we will support the development of the oil and gas sector, "he stressed.
"Under the AOGC, we will seek support from and utilize Ghanaian educational institutions to increase competency levels through a training of local trainers programme," he added.
The company, he said, want to get a lot out of the 4.5 million dollar contribution and was confident that, this would happen through the project framework and the good cooperation already established between the Petroleum Commission and Aker Energy.
Mr Egbert Faibille Jnr, Acting Chief Executive Officer, the Petroleum Commission, said the AOGC programme aimed to deliberately and strategically trained the Ghanaian youth to work in Ghana and elsewhere in from exploration through to decommissioning.
He said the involvement of Ghanaians in the upstream sector was expected to rise to levels that would prove that the AOGC was the boldest attempt by any government to ensure that Ghanaians take their rightful places in the industry.
Prof. Elvis Nyarko, Vice Chancellor of the Regional Maritime University, who chaired the ceremony commended Aker for the support to enhance the technical and vocational skills of Ghanaians.
"This is a huge platform to get manpower for the country and we are always assured of continuous support by the Norwegian government as they have been with the country since oil has been discovered," he stated.
"We can do more as a country as other corporate entities must follow Aker's support. We also commend the government of Ghana for ensuring the President's vision has come to reality, "he added.
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