Poised to strengthen the petroleum downstream regulator’s relationship with its peer regulators on the African continent, the Chief Executive of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), Dr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid has embarked on a working visit to Zambian Energy Regulatory Board (ERB).
Dr Abdul-Hamid, accompanied by Ghana High Commissioner to Zambia, Her Excellency Ms. Iddrisu Khadija together with some NPA board and management members visited the ERB head office in Lusaka.
The tour is premised on major successes achieved by the fuel marking program in both countries, to share lessons on the implementation of the program with the view of improving current operations.
Briefing the media on what necessitated the visit, the NPA boss said before the Zambian regulatory body begun its implementation of the fuel marking programme in 2017, they sent a seven-member team to understudy Ghana’s model of the petroleum product marking scheme in 2015.
He said the Zambian team were taken through the programme set-up, staffing, contractor & subcontractor payments, margins, benefits, challenges, legislation, among others.
Fast-forward, Dr Abdul-Hamid said ERB sent another two-group delegation in 2018 comprising key fuel marking operational staff, senior management, and board to interact with NPA to gain further insights on the rollout and implementation of both the marking and monitoring activities of the Ghana fuel marking programme.
Dr Abdul-Hamid was elated to know that since the successful launch and rollout of the fuel marking in Zambia, the programme has chalked major success.
He mentioned product quality compliance rate at the retail outlet has increased to over 96% and illegal fuel vendors have been successfully prosecuted and convicted.
Despite Ghana’s major successes in the fuel marking programme, the NPA Chief Executive said “we still want to learn from the Zambian programme to help us improve on our operations in the field of fuel marking and regulation, as well as foster a healthy collaboration in the area of fuel integrity monitoring between our institutions.”
The ERB is a statutory body charged with the responsibility of regulating the energy sector in Zambia. The ERB is generally responsible for ensuring that energy enterprises earn a reasonable rate of return on their investments and consumers are given quality products and services.