The Bank of Ghana has assured the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament that it will provide the requisite documents on the ounces of gold used for the first consignment of the gold for the oil deal.
In January 2023, the government received 40,000 metric tonnes of oil under the deal as part of efforts to offer much cheaper fuel options.
Industry experts such as the Institute of Energy Securities and COPEC have called on the government to disclose the quantity of gold it exchanged for the 40,000 metric tons of fuel as they raised questions over the viability of the deal.
Speaking at the Public Accounts Committee sittings, the First Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Maxwell Opoku Afari said the details of the transaction would be presented before the committee in due course.
“What I can confirm is that the gold is being purchased in local currency [in cedis] so it is a conversion of our local assets into foreign assets, and then it is being purchased at the world market price. We use the Bloomberg and Reuters market prices to purchase the gold.”
“I will beg the committee because I do not have the full details now…the details of the transaction would be presented before the committee in due course.”
Meanwhile, the government has disclosed that the gold for oil policy would not immediately lead to a reduction in fuel prices until more consignment arrives in Ghana.
The Deputy Energy Minister, Andrew Egyapa Mercer, said the government didn’t expect the prices of fuel to change immediately with only 10 per cent of the total deal.
The expectation was that the arrival of the 40,000 metric tons would reduce the pressure on forex and also present the country with cheaper fuel, but that has not been the case as fuel prices have increased twice within the period upsetting the majority of Ghanaians.
But speaking on Eyewitness News, on Thursday, Mr Egyapa Mercer said the first consignment was just part of the pilot process.
“It wasn’t our expectation that it [gold for oil policy] will have an overnight effect because there are stocks that are already on the market, so you cannot expect that an injection of 10 per cent of the gold for oil policy will suddenly change the pricing dynamics. It is a process and not an event.”