Fri. Jun 21st, 2024

Energy Expert, Kwame Jantuah, has warned that the influx of Chinese tanker drivers in the petroleum sector of the Ghanaian economy can result in capital flight and weaken the Cedi.

He explained that the Chinese would convert the proceeds they make, from Cedi to Dollars, and repatriate them.

When that happens, he said, it will put pressure on the local currency and further worsen its woes.

Although he recognizes that foreign investors are needed to boost the local economy, there is a need to protect local players and ensure that they are given premium places in the petroleum sector to occupy.

Local tanker drivers say their checks have revealed that about 300 tanker trucks have so far been imported into the country.

Speaking on the Sunrise show on 3FM with Johnnie Hughes on Wednesday, September 27, Mr Jantuah who is also a private legal practitioner said “One thing we should be mindful of is that the Chinese are always strategic at what they do.

“They have a refinery, they have the raw materials, they now have tankers, the next you see is that they have petroleum garages.”

He added “The most serious aspect is the capital flight issue. We need Dollars in this country, the Cedis that they [Chinese] will earn from refining petroleum products, will have to change into Dollars, they are taking dollars out of the system which affects our Cedi, and we cannot allow that to happen.

“The money that they make goes into their banks, not our banks, we have to ensure that the money stays in our banks for development.”

“Investment is good but if that investment is going to spoil Ghanaian businesses we don’t need it,” he stressed.

Also commenting on the same show, Member of Parliament for Yapei Kusawgu who is also a former Deputy Energy Minister John Jinpor wondered why the Chinese were permitted to bring in 300 tankers.

Although he stated that foreign businesses should be welcomed into the country, they cannot operate at the expense of the indigenous businesses.

“Why will a Chinese company bring 300 tankers into this country?” he asked.

He added “In as much as you want to do business in Ghana don’t kill our local businesses.”

He further assured that the Mines and Energy Committee of Parliament will further project the concerns of the local tanker drivers and ensure that their interests are protected.

Deputy Minister of Energy who is also a lawmaker for Sekondi Andrew Egyaper Mercer assured that efforts were underway to protect Ghanaians in the petroleum sector.

“We are not losing sight of the need to protect Ghanaian investors and also the need for foreign investors,” he said.

He added “We will ensure that they [Chinese] do not operate to the disadvantage of locals.”

The National Peprle Authority (NPA) has already written to Sentuo Refinery Limited, the Chinese Company that is reported to have imported the tankers into the country, expressing concern about this action.

By Admin

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