Government denies loss of 4.5 million barrels of Jubilee oil

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oil rig millsGovernment has described as false, media reports that some amount of crude oil from the Jubilee Field cannot be accounted for.

The publication by the New Statesman newspaper and citing inconsistencies in production volumes from two different sources, suggests that as much as 4.5 million barrels may have gone missing.

But the government has denied the report.

A Ministry of Finance statement in response to the newspaper’s claim however does not explain a variance in production volumes raised by the Minority in Parliament.

According to the Statesman, whilst Tullow put out a production figure of 22 million barrels, the Finance Minister indicated in the budget that 17.42 million barrels has so far been produced.

But the Finance Ministry says the two production figures cannot be compared as they relate to different periods.

It says whilst that of Tullow represented production since first oil in November last year to November 8 this year, the figure contained in the budget is for the amount of crude produced from the Jubilee Field between January and September this year.

The Minority in a related development however points to conflicting figures released by the Ministry for production volumes between January and September this year.

Spokesperson on Finance, Dr. Anthony Akoto Osei says government will have to be more transparent in accounting for the country’s crude oil.

Meanwhile, Dr Alhassan Iddrisu, Acting Director of the Real Sector Division at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, said people are confused between crude lifted and what is produced, saying the Ministry only published the total volume of lift.

“There is difference between crude lift and production. Now in the budget statement paragraph 59, for the purposes of computing or estimating the Gross Domestic Product for the country on provisional basis we use January to September 2011 production figures that gives us the 17.42 million.

“But what the Ministry of Finance published in the Ghanaian Times and other newspapers was production volume, and that was production volume that was lifted. There is a difference between what we lift and what is produced. So our lifting up to the end of the third quarter was 17.569million.”

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