(Adds quote, detail)
By Kwasi Kpodo
ACCRA, April 11 Ghana National Petroleum
Corporation (GNPC) is seeking $1 billion to fund its plan to
become an independent operator in seven years and will also seek
to build an oil trading desk with its partner Unipec, chief
executive Alex Mould said.
"We think $1 billion is a good start and I think we'll get
there. This $1 billion is going to be used for many things.
We're looking for opportunities and the best is to go into
exploration, do more appraisal work," Mould told Reuters.
GNPC is working with the government on funding and looking
for "efficient capitalization", Mould said, but he gave no
further details as to how the money would be raised.
Production from Ghana's main field Jubilee, operated by
Tullow, is expected to hit 110,000 barrels per day in
Unipec, which already markets some of Ghana's oil, is a
wholly-owned subsidiary of China's Sinopec..
"We have an accelerated growth strategy to become an
independent operator in seven years and a world class operator
in 15 years," Mould said on Wednesday.
"GNPC's goal is that if we develop our capability we must as
well start using our own resources in looking elsewhere outside
Ghana for potential hydrocarbon resources that we can explore
together with the countries involved," he said.
Few African oil producers market and trade their own crude
because it involves significant technical challenges. The ones
that do are well-established producers, said oil expert Valerie
Marcel of the Chatham House think tank.
Ghana discovered oil offshore in 2007 and began producing in
Mould said that Ghana, which also exports cocoa and gold,
would have a sustained total crude output of above 200,000
barrels per day by late 2016 after the full development of
Jubilee and the coming on stream of adjoining fields currently
(Additional reporting and writing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg;
Editing by Anthony Barker)