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Good morning ladies and gentlemen of the Press. On behalf of the Board Chairman of AOMCs, CEOs of OMCs/LPGMs present, we welcome you all to this short but important briefing. As we are all aware, the 7th October 2017 Atomic Junction Gas Explosion will go down in the history books as one nightmarish incident that has resulted in the loss of seven (7) lives and one hundred and thirty-two (132) others hospitalised as well as several properties destroyed. The Association would like to express its heartfelt and profound condolences to the bereaved families and to the affected victims of this sad and undesirable event. May we please observe a minute of silence in memory those who lost their lives!!

Ladies and gentlemen, it is unfortunate that we should witness such an incident like this notwithstanding the Association’s commitment to safety as it has embarked on an extensive safety campaign this year in collaboration with you the media as partners.

As a mark of respect for the dead, per our culture, and also to the laws of the country, the Association will not be in a haste to pre-empt or predict the findings of the team set up by the government to investigate the issue but will patiently wait for the outcome. Meanwhile, we wish to state emphatically that the Association will not in any way seek to shield any member who violates the rules and regulations of the industry especially in such a manner that endangers lives and property. What we however wish to add is that due process should be followed in dealing with whoever is found culpable.

Ladies and gentlemen, we duly acknowledge that we have the prime responsibility of making our facilities safe and secure for our numerous customers who we have served with the supply of LPG (gas) for about 30 years, and of petrol and diesel for about 100 years. In this regard, one would expect that in these tough time, we will seek to be united as a collective force to correct and prevent the reoccurrence of such incidents, as safety is a shared responsibility for operators, regulators, agencies, customers, the general public and the government.

It is however sad and disheartening to hear, read and witness a plethora of comments from some pseudo experts with no or little knowledge and understanding of the LPG industry and those who should have known better, but for reasons unfathomable, throwing dust into the eyes of the public with falsehood, half-truths and inaccurate information. Such flammable utterances, innuendos and castigations have the tendency to kill initiatives and denigrate the Oil Marketing Companies/Liquefied Petroleum Gas Marketers (OMCs/LPGMs) who have invested in these retail outlets and have been rendering very meaningful services to the country at large.

It is common knowledge that it takes a prospective retail outlet owner more than 6 months to obtain all the necessary permits and approval prior to the commencement of the construction process with borrowed funds at high interest rates. We wish to inform the general public that the retail outlets are sited in areas zoned for the purpose by the Town Planning Department. It must be noted that NPA will only grant an applicant a construction permit when all the various requirements have been met. These include a letter from the Town Planning Department indicating that the site has been duly zoned for that activity; an EPA Permit, Building Permit by the District, Municipal, Metropolitan Assemblies, Fire Permit by Ghana National Fire Service, Ghana Standards Authority certification, among others.

This should tell you that this is one of the most highly regulated industries in the country and that the Association’s Members are among the most law-abiding business operators in the country since they go through all these steps before operating.

The Association would like to add that even when outlets have been constructed and are being operated, there is continuous inspection and monitoring by the regulators and other agencies to ensure that the retail outlets are operating according to the prescribed standards of performance. Additionally, we ensure that our retail outlets are manned by qualified managers and supervisors whose responsibilities include ensuring that the day-to-day operations at the stations are safe.

Therefore, the unparalleled marauding, demonstrations against some legitimate retail outlets and hitting the “panic button” exemplified by wanton closure of retail outlets in a “Rambo style” by some unrepented MMDCEs in an industry regulated by five ministries and other regulatory bodies, is unwarranted and must be condemned with all the contempt it deserves. This has innate results of culminating in chaos and anarchy in the society and inflaming passion among the citizenry thereby creating disaffection for OMCs/LPGMs. We would like to reiterate that OMCs/LPGMs are neither “monsters” nor “criminals” but are Ghanaians making a living by legally investing in the petroleum industry. Some marketers have their administrative offices within the confines of such outlets. Therefore, our intent to have a safe operation of our outlets cannot be in doubt!! This situation rather calls for a sober deep-seated thought, thorough, unbiased and unfettered investigations to unearth the root causes and furnish the nation with sustained corrective and preventive actions which will inform the public in a positive manner whilst consolidating or improving the existing industry standards for the public safety assurance.

The downstream petroleum industry is a well guided and regulated industry in this nation of ours, with the National Petroleum Authority as the lead regulator. As indicated earlier, there are other statutory authorities such as the Town Planning Department, Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs), Ghana Standards Authority (GSA), etc. whose collective duty is enshrined by the respective legal frameworks with safety and security as the core objectives. Therefore, the blame game at this stage of our national life rather exacerbates the already precarious situation.

While we wait patiently for the investigation report, we will pursue the following:

  1. Intensify the peer audit activity with priority to outlets in congested areas especially on discharge of LPG from the Bulk Road Vessels (i.e. tankers).
  2. We will continue to provide the requisite training for all our personnel especially the attendants, drivers and their mates.
  3. We will continue to explore and introduce new technology to enhance our operations in our outlets.
  4. We will intensify public education on safety in collaboration with you the media, our key partners.

For our regulators:

  1. We shall continue to work closely with them to comply with their regulations.
  2. Regarding their safety auditors, we recommend that the recruitment of the said auditors must be such that they are located in the related districts or municipalities to enhance appreciation of the requisite environments from which we operate.
  3. We also recommend that, together we continue to review the job safe procedure of transferring or discharging of products

For MMDAs

As a result of growth patterns, both economic and population;

  1. We would like to suggest that they assist to decongest areas in and around the LPG outlets since some of our LPG outlets which were initially sited far from such densely populated areas, are now being surrounded by structures and people posing danger to lives and property.
  2. Together with the Fire Service offices in the districts, periodically work with our dealers and station managers to organize emergency drills.
  3. To respect the laws that govern the industry and allow regulatory agencies duly mandated to do their work instead of interfering in their work.
  4. Government

We wish to assure government that as an industry, we are committed to improving standards in the industry and thus will support efforts in this direction.

However, we wish to respectfully indicate that new policies introduction should not be done in a rush but should be well-thought through with the buy-in of all key stakeholders such as our members since the effective and efficient implementation of such policies rests largely on us. It is the success of the policy that matters not the haste in introducing it.

Customers/ General Public:

We would also like to remind the general public that the retail outlets are confined areas hence the following must be strictly adhered to;

  1. Anyone who has no business at the retail outlets should not venture entry.
  2. No one should smoke or use combustibles materials (i.e. materials that can easily catch fire) in the hazardous area around the bullets or tanks, Bulk Road Vessels (tankers) and the fuel pumps.
  3. The engine of the vehicle to be filled should be switched off before the dispensing begins.
  4. Desist from making the retail LPG outlets a parking lot and an emergency shelter.
  5. Consumers should observe all safety signs at the retail outlets

In conclusion, we the members of the Association are willing, determined and ready to lend our support to make our outlets a safe place for all since we are committed to best industry practices.

God bless our homeland Ghana.

Thank you

…………………………………………………..

KWAKU AGYEMANG-DUAH

CEO/INDUSTRY COORDINATOR

12th October, 2017

The Association of Oil Marketing Companies (AOMCS) has wrapped up the 2017 Petroleum Fun Games with outstanding performance from Kabore Oil Limited sweeping five trophies and one first runner up trophy as well.

 

Kabore took away the Football, Lime and Spoon, Ludo, Draught trophies as well as the first runner up trophy for the Playing Cards and iced the good day with the Best Performing Team trophy, at the 2017 PETFUN Games held at the Burma Camp Leisure Center.

The PETFUN organized by the AOMC was to create an opportunity for Oil Marketing Companies (OMC) to drop their traditional business war and put on a new garment to engage in friendly hostilities on the playing field loaded with fun.

Other winners were: Ghana Oil Company Limited (GOIL) who disappointingly picked only the Table Tennis trophy, Puma Energy Limited also struggled for the Volleyball trophy, whilst the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) once again exerted their will power in the Tug of War competition disposing all opposition to pick the trophy.

NPA also picked the foremost swimming competition trophy, So Energy picked the Sack Race Trophy, and Excel Oil Company Limited picked the Playing Cards trophy.

The 2017 PETFUN also witness dramatic exposure of product branding, glamour and beauty, dexterity of scores of NPA ladies who added tonic to the fun with a chorographic performance on the sidelines whilst scores of some ladies were in titillating sports outfits for the beauty of the game.

The various OMCs also invaded the center with scores of brass band and cheer groups which created a harmonious musical and dancing disorder.

The Best Female Participant gold medal went to Ms Laila Zangvio of NPA, and the Golden Boot award was picked by Mr Asamoah Boateng of Kabore.

The silver medalists were: Excel picked the Volleyball; Glee Oil Company Limited picked the Tug of War; Venus Oil Company Limited took away the Football and the Lime and Spoon; NPA the Table Tennis and Swimming; and Glory Oil Company Limited picking the Ludo.

Other silver medallists were: Frimps Oil Company Limited picked the Draught, and Cirus Oil Company Limited took the Sack Race.
Mr Kwaku Agyemang-Duah, AOMC Industry Coordinator told the CDA Consult in an interview that the annual PETFUN was to create avenue for staffs to exercise their bodies through fun for healthy living.

“Management should not only focus on increased productivity to push staff to the ultimate but the welfare of staff should be paramount as a healthy person is well motivated to produce with little or no supervision and motivation.

“The bane of most corporate managers is the neglect of the welfare of staff, poor working environment, creating of ivory towers where they hide and operate from as well as lack of motivation,” Mr Agyemang-Duah stated and called on those in the formal working environment to engage in regular bodily exercises.

Mr Kwaku Agyemang-Duah, AOMCs Industrial Coordinator commended the Oil Marketing Companies who participated in games and noted the need for oil marketing companies to build bridges and establish stronger network with other stakeholders across board.

Communication for Development and Advocacy Consult (CDA Consult) provides tailor made development communication tools necessary for operational transformation and translating dreams into achievable goals and equips clients with mechanism for public education on specific issues.

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The Association of Oil Marketing Companies (AOMCs) launched their Safety Week Celebration dubbed ASWEC 2017 on Monday, 22nd May, 2017 on the theme "Petroleum Safety, it's your right!" The Campaign which has Bidi Group as the main sponsor, is being organised to help stem the tide of growing incidents in the downstream petroleum industry and involves a lot of activities as follows;

 

DAY ACTIVITY TARGET GROUP VENUE
MON. 22ND MAY 2017

Launch of Programme (10:00AM-12:00PM)

  • Guest Speaker

  • Special Guests of Honour

AOMCs Members/media, etc.

AOMCs Office

Daily Safety Campaign;

  • Day 1: Forecourt Safety (Product knowledge-hazards associated with white products) – Personnel from Total

  • Day 2: Forecourt Safety (Product knowledge-hazards associated with LPG) – Otu Larbie

  • Day 3: What is expected of employees of OMCs/LPGMCs & the general public - Tizard Ansah

AOMCs Members Airwaves
TUE. 23RD MAY, 2017
  • Launch of safety program “Forecourt Day” by OMCs/LPGMCs at their various retail outlets (9:00AM-10:00PM)
    • Train their personnel at the forecourt/LPG refilling plant on safety for 15-20 minutes

  • Time with the Media (10:00AM-12:00PM)
    • Presentation of station regulations by EPA, NPA, Fire, FID & TCPD

AOMCs Members/stakeholders

Retail Outlets

   AOMCs office

WED. 24TH MAY 2017
  • Safety Training for AOMCs members (CIE) (10:00AM-1:00PM) - Forecourt/LPG refilling plant safety – Total & Otu Larbi
AOMCs Members/stakeholders AOMCs office
FRI. 26TH MAY, 2017
  • Open forum (9:00AM-11:00AM)
    • Station tour (safety measures at stations) – Visit 3 retail outlets including an LPG refilling plant

  • Thanksgiving service at the mosque – in remembrance of people who have died over the years (1:00PM)

AOMCs Members/stakeholders

Selected Retail Outlets

Central Mosque

SUN. 28TH MAY, 2017
  • Interdenominational thanksgiving service – In remembrance of people who have died over the years (9:00 AM)
AOMCs Members/stakeholders Ridge Church

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Petrosol, a solely Ghanaian-owned Oil Marketing Company(OMC) operating more than 70 fuel stations has been adjudged the fastest growing OMC in the country by the Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC). 


The OMC's Marketing Manager, Akwesi Zigah was awarded the Best Marketing Personnel while Florence Nyarko also won Overall Best Pump Attendant for Petrosol. 

Receiving the awards on behalf of Petrosol, Chief Executive Officer Micheal Bozumbil expressed appreciation to the Chamber and customers, adding that Petrosol will continually work towards satisfying the demands of its customers. 

Mr. Bozumbil bemoaned the sales of adulterated products and the smuggling of sub standard fuel into the country as the major challenge confronting Oil Marketing Companies in the country. 

"Not only do these smuggled and contaminated products affect the sales and growth of OMCs in the country, it also curtails taxes paid to the government since OMCs are not making more sales as well posing damage threat to the vehicles of consumers." Mr. Bozumbil noted

He commended government's effort to combating the menace whiles urging for more to be done to mitigate the damaging effects of this practice. 

"Government's effort is commendable but more ought to be done. This is a practice that cost government more than GHC 1bn annually. So government has to be consistent with its effort" Mr. Bozumbil noted. 

He also asserted that the sale of smuggled and contaminated product displaces more than 2 million liters of Petrosol products monthly from the market costing Petrosol around GHC6million. 

Meanwhile with respect to awards, Engen Oil was awarded Best Fuel Quality for the year under review.

 

The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) has disclosed that Ghana loses about 850 million cedis annually in taxes, due to the increased activities of fuel smugglers into and out of the country.

The illegal act is said to involve operators who ply their business at the ports by fuelling tanks with fuel products brought into the country via unapproved routes.

The second category of the illicit trade is carried out by businesses who apply under the pretext of exporting petroleum products but end up selling them within Ghana, thereby evading some taxes.

The Chief Executive of the NPA, Hassan Tampuli confirmed the worrying development to Citi Business News after a visit to the Tema port led by Deputy Finance Minister, Kweku Kwarteng on Thursday.

“We estimate that about 250,000 metric tonnes of losses in terms of petroleum products get to this country and that is estimated to cost the country 850,000,000 cedis,” he said.

Mr. Tampuli added, “NPA considers this as a great concern and we have engaged all stakeholders involving the security agencies and the Ministry of Finance.” According to the NPA boss, the vessels believed to be perpetrating the act berth at the Harbour under the guise of dislodging sludge (which is dirty oil) but actually discharge diesel or petrol to directly into fuel tankers parked at shore.

The industry regulator is also alarmed over concerns that some of these products could be coming from pirated sources. To commence the clampdown, the NPA has directed that, “No vessel be allowed to discharge petroleum products at the Tema port, main harbor, fishing harbor or dry dock.”

Commenting on businesses flouting the provisions guiding the export of petroleum products to neighbouring Burkina Faso or Mali, Mr. Tampuli asserted that the relative cheaper prices quoted by the miscreants distort the market as their prices make genuinely sanctioned ones expensive for the consumer.

As a result, the NPA, together with the Finance Ministry have reiterated the enforcement of the new tax exemption rules to curb the abuse of the current provisions.

 

http://m.peacefmonline.com/pages/business/economy/201704/313120.php

 The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) has disclosed that Ghana loses about 850 million cedis annually in taxes, due to the increased activities of fuel smugglers into and out of the country.The illegal act is said to involve operators who ply their business at the ports by fuelling tanks with fuel products brought into the country via unapproved routes.The second category of the illicit trade is carried out by businesses who apply under the pretext of exporting petroleum products but end up selling them within Ghana, thereby evading some taxes.The Chief Executive of the NPA, Hassan Tampuli confirmed the worrying development to Citi Business News after a visit to the Tema port led by Deputy Finance Minister, Kweku Kwarteng on Thursday.“We estimate that about 250,000 metric tonnes of losses in terms of petroleum products get to this country and that is estimated to cost the country 850,000,000 cedis,” he said.Mr. Tampuli added, “NPA considers this as a great concern and we have engaged all stakeholders involving the security agencies and the Ministry of Finance.” According to the NPA boss, the vessels believed to be perpetrating the act berth at the Harbour under the guise of dislodging sludge (which is dirty oil) but actually discharge diesel or petrol to directly into fuel tankers parked at shore.The industry regulator is also alarmed over concerns that some of these products could be coming from pirated sources. To commence the clampdown, the NPA has directed that, “No vessel be allowed to discharge petroleum products at the Tema port, main harbor, fishing harbor or dry dock.”Commenting on businesses flouting the provisions guiding the export of petroleum products to neighbouring Burkina Faso or Mali, Mr. Tampuli asserted that the relative cheaper prices quoted by the miscreants distort the market as their prices make genuinely sanctioned ones expensive for the consumer.As a result, the NPA, together with the Finance Ministry have reiterated the enforcement of the new tax exemption rules to curb the abuse of the current provisions.

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