Benin has requested Ghana to assist it in the area of exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbons in the Dahomeyan embayment in that country. It expects Ghana to share geological and geophysical data with that country and further provide a framework for the exploitation of wells within the embayment.
Officials of that country also want Ghana to share best practices in the oil and gas industry with particular interest in petroleum engineering and reservoir management as parts of efforts to develop that country’s oil and gas sector. Accordingly, the two countries have signed a preliminary Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the issues at the closing ceremony of the second consultative experts meeting in Accra. The agreement was signed recently as a prelude to the reactivation of the Ghana/Benin Permanent Joint Commission for Cooperation (PJCC).
Other areas of cooperation include fisheries, security, and immigration, drug trafficking, tourism and sports, education and communication, among other sectors. The meeting saw the experts deliberate and develops realistic road maps for the realisation of the agreed areas. The two countries are thus expected to sign bilateral agreements on the cooperation areas at the next session of the Ghana/Benin PJCC meeting to be held in Cotonou in June 2017.
At the signing ceremony, the Deputy Director of the Africa and Regional Integration Bureau at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr Bonaventure Adjavor, indicated that Ghana was also seeking a review of the air services agreement with the Benin government to include market access and a free traffic regime. Mr Adjavor also indicated that the experts agreed to a review of policies that would enhance free trade, as the free cargo movement of freight between the Abidjan-Accra-Lome-Cotonou and Lagos corridor had challenges.