Prime News Ghana

Gold for oil: Bleeding is allowed - Bawumia tells disappointed critics

By Vincent Ashitey
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Vice-President Mahamudu Bawumia has aimed a dig at critics saying they are "very disappointed the Gold for oil policy is working."

The government announced plans to use gold to purchase imported oil products. The policy is to allow the government to pay for imported oil products with gold, in a direct barter with gold purchased by the central bank.

The policy is meant to help stabilise prices of fuel products, as well as reduce pressure on Ghana’s foreign exchange, as the direct gold barter will be the mode of paying for imported oil instead of depleting the foreign exchange reserve.

READ ALSO: Gold for Oil: All you need to know about programme

However, some people including the former boss of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) Alex Mould have reservations about the scheme describing it as "unnecessary."

Reacting to this development at the commissioning of a new Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation (BOST) head office in Accra on Wednesday, March 15, Bawumia did not hold back.

“There are people who are very disappointed the policy is working, but bleeding is allowed. We have an impossibility mindest they can keep to it, for us, all things are possible by the grace of God.”

He also announced that consumers of petroleum products should expect a further decrease in the prices of fuel at the pumps as a result of the implementation of government’s Gold for Oil Policy.

“We have to understand that the prices of fuel will go up and come down, but what we expect to see under the gold for oil policy is more stability in the pricing and also savings in foreign exchange, there is more to come,” Bawumia said.

“This is the third month of the operation of the policy, just the third month, some people said ‘it will not work, Ghana does not have enough gold’. How can you say that? We have been mining this gold for 200 years, they keep taking it out and it cannot work?” Bawumia asked.

So far seen about 100,000 metric tons of fuel have been brought into the country under the policy.

Meanwhile, the prices of petrol and diesel are expected to drop significantly between 3% and 10% at the pumps, from Thursday, March 16, the Institute for Energy Security (IES) has said.