Thursday, November 2, 2017

Promoting The Gambia: Oil and Gas Opportunity Event - 10th November 2017 - in London

The Government of The Gambia is inviting prospective investors "to an exclusive event" on its Oil and Gas Opportunities hosted by Berwin Leighton Paisner, a London law firm, in association with Amie Bensouda & Co. the Lead Counsel of the Commission of Inquiry into the illicit wealth of Yaya Jammeh.

The Road Show promises a detailed update of the hydrocarbon investment opportunities.  It also promises to provide " a road map to licensing the open blocks in the country in general and the anticipated selection process that will be implemented in the coming months to engage in the petroleum industry."

The Gambian side will be led by Hon. Fafa Sanyang, Minister of Petroleum and Energy with the following officials in tow :-

  • Mr. Dawda Fadera, Secretary General and Head of the Civil Service
  • Hon. Amadou Sanneh, Minister of Finance 
  • Hon. Abubacarr Tambadou, Attorney General and Minister of Justice
  • Hon. Demba Jawo,  Minister of Information
  • Mr. Mod K. Ceesay, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum and Energy
  • Mr. Jerry Barrow, The Commissioner of Petroleum
  • Mr. Mambury Njie, Managing Director,  GNPC
  • Mr. Cherno Marenah, Solicitor General and Legal Secretary
  • Mr. Abdoulie Jallow, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance
  • Mr. Assan Faal, CEO, GIEP
  • Mrs. Amie Bojang-Sissoho, Director of Press and Public Relations, PRESOF
The Finance Minister is scheduled to update prospective investors on progress made since the transitional Coalition Government assumed office.  Presentations from other officials will highlight the opportunities in the oil and gas sector by unveiling the oil blocks that will be available, the quality of the data and how to access it.  The legal, regulatory and institutional frameworks are also expected to be discussed.  The finale will be for the Minister of Petroleum and Energy to announce the selection process.

While we continue to monitor developments, we will refrain, for now, from offering our views on the petroleum sub-sector that has been recklessly managed by the previous regime resulting in loss of future revenue, high level corruption, false starts and endless litigation with threats of arbitration by Frank Timis's African Petroleum Corporation.  A new legal framework is necessary to guarantee the protection of the sovereign interests.   

A Sovereign Wealth Fund modeled on the Norwegian prototype is worthy of consideration to ensure that Gambians yet unborn will benefit from the proceeds of revenue expected to be derived from an estimated 2 - 3 billion barrels that is within our boundaries.  We must not rush it.  If we do, history will not be kind to those responsible for squandering the nation's wealth.