The Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC), has urged the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to retrieve some $2.1 million owed the state by international oil producing firms operating in the country.
PIAC in its annual report noted oil majors operating Ghana’s 3 oil fields – Sakofa Gye Nyame, TEN and Jubilee – owed the state to the tune of $2.1 million in surface rental arrears.
According to PIAC, the $2.1 million surface rental arrears recorded at the end of 2020, represents an increase of 34.71 percent over the 2019 arrears of $1.5 million.
“Surface Rental payments remain in arrears to the tune of $2,110,212.23 in 2020, representing a 34.71 percent increase over the 2019 arrears of $1,566,463.12,” stated the report.
PIAC in the report urged the GRA to as a matter of urgency, initiate action to recover surface rental arrears with the appropriate interest, as provided for in the Petroleum Revenue Managament Act (PRMA).
Adding the non-payment of surface rental by oil companies denies the Petroleum Holding Fund (PHF) the necessary funds needed for development projects.
Oil revenues mobilised into the PHF from Royalties, Carried and Participating Interest (CAPI), Corporate Income Taxes (CIT), Surface Rentals, and other income for last year, amounted to $638 million.
Revenues mobilised from Royalties, CAPI, CIT, Surface Rentals and other income amounted to $195 million, $300 million, $141 million, $697,532 and $177,653 respectively.
Total oil revenues mobilised for 2020, however, fell short of the $925 million mobilised in 2019 on the account of a 6.3 percent lower production volumes from that of 2019 coupled with the unfavourable international crude oil prices due to the turbulence in the petroleum industry arising out of the global COVID-19 pandemic last year.