Addis Ababa, Ethiopia -Â Various companies have proposed that the government introduce better petroleum and mining laws to help boost the potentially lucrative industry.
eDuring a two-day workshop at the Harmony Hotel organized by the renowned consultancy firm Deloitte Ethiopia earlier this week, representatives of different companies said that Ethiopia has immense mineral and petroleum resources, adding that the government should improve the existing mining and petroleum laws to attract more direct foreign investments.
Haileleule Tamiru, managing partner of Deloitte Ethiopia, said that his company (HST Consulting), has represented Deloitte in Ethiopia since 2003. Deloitte consults on corporate finance, tax and audit, working closely with banks, mining, oil and gas companies, among others. Last year the company organized a workshop for the banking sector, and is currently planning to organize similar workshops for different sectors.
Haileleule told The Reporter that oil was discovered in South Sudan, Uganda, and Kenya. â€œSomalia also has oil. Ethiopia will discover oil. And we need to be prepared. The right legal framework should be there, and we will need to build our capacity,â€ he said.
Representative from the Ministry of Mines, Almaz Belayneh, in her keynote address said that currently there are 12 international petroleum companies engaged in oil and gas exploration in different parts of the country. Almaz said that this was a good start, adding that the ongoing exploration work will eventually bear fruit.
Tadesse Tilahun, CEO of National Oil Company (NOC), echoed that oil is being discovered in different east African countries, saying that it would be wise if the region could work together to build oil pipelines and refineries. â€œIt would be commendable if they could share these resources. Ethiopia has already started exporting electric power to Djibouti and Sudan, and is in the process of selling power to Kenya. This should be emulated in the oil sector. This is how we can economically integrate Africa,â€ he told the participants.
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