Overview and role of the EITI
Ghana is Africa’s top gold producer and a major producer of diamonds, bauxite and manganese. It is also an emerging lithium producer. The country began oil production in 2011, and, as of 2013, oil revenues surpassed mining receipts. According to the latest EITI reporting, the extractive sector accounted for 11.3% of GDP and 15% of government revenue in 2020.
Issues around improving revenue mobilisation, addressing corruption and maximising the benefits of extractive projects through value addition dominate policy and public debate in the country.
The EITI has played a key role in reforming the mining sector fiscal regime. It is used as a platform to improve disclosures of oil sales, contracts and beneficial owners of companies and strengthen transparency and governance of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), a state-owned enterprise.
With 10% of mining royalties allocated to local governments, Ghana EITI (GHEITI) is working to improve accountability of these transfers. Stakeholders are also using the EITI to explore opportunities to manage risks and opportunities related to the energy transition.
Economic contribution of the extractive industries
- to government revenue
- to exports
- to GDP
- to employment
- GHEITI’s report on critical minerals has informed the country’s first National Energy Transition Framework. To facilitate community level engagement on extractives and energy issues, GHEITI has established three (3) pilot decentralised multi-stakeholder platforms in Ellembelle, Obuasi and Prestea-Huni Valley districts by the end of 2023.
- A 2020 financial modelling study is informing stakeholder debate on the future of Ghana’s Agyapa Royalty deal.
- GHEITI has contributed to the disclosure of contracts governing the country’s 18 oil blocks and several mining leases.
- EITI reporting has provided recommendations aimed at addressing gaps in the legal and fiscal frameworks governing the extractive sector.
- Efforts by GHEITI and stakeholders have contributed to a high level of transparency of Ghana’s oil sales.
- GHEITI has developed a 2021-2026 gender strategy to enhance gender parity in the extractive sector and has further disaggregated employment data by gender.
Ghana’s petroleum sector is mainly governed by the Petroleum Revenue Management Act (PRMA), alongside other regulations and laws such as the Environmental Protection Agency Act and the Income Tax Law. It is mainly regulated by the Petroleum Commission, the Ghana Revenue Authority and the Ministry of Energy. The upstream petroleum sector operates on a concessional-based fiscal regime, with a minimum 15% carried interest by the state, a 5% royalty rate and a 35% corporate income tax rate.
The mining sector is governed by the Mining and Minerals Act and related regulations such as the Environmental Assessment Regulations and Mining Regulations. It is mainly regulated by the Minerals Commission, the Ghana Revenue Authority and the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources. The sector operates on a royalty tax model fiscal regime with a 5% royalty rate and a 35% corporate income tax rate.
Ghana’s Ministry of Energy oversees a Licensing Bid Rounds and Negotiation (LBRN) Committee that allocates oil blocks in an open and competitive public tender process. The law allows the Minister of Energy to enter into direct negotiations where necessary. Ghana’s first open tendering process was held in August 2018.
Mining concessions are allocated on a first come first served basis, with plans underway to adopt a hybrid regime that includes an open tendering process.
While the government does not have a policy for contract disclosure, all petroleum contracts are published by the Petroleum Commission and the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum. Several mining contracts are published via the Minerals Commission the Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP) Contract Portal and resourcecontracts.org.
The Companies Act 2019 provides the legal basis for collecting and maintaining a national database on beneficial owners in Ghana.
Successive governments have sustained commitment on beneficial ownership transparency since 2016. Since October 2020, the Registrar General’s Department (RGD) collects ownership data from all companies in a central register. In January 2020, GHEITI published ownership data on some mining and oil and gas companies. The Petroleum Commission and Minerals Commission also collect ownership data as part of license allocation procedures.
In September 2021, Ghana launched its participation in the Opening Extractives Programme, a global programme aiming to improve the availability and use of beneficial ownership data. A national steering committee, composed of representatives from GHEITI, the Registrar General’s Department, the Petroleum Commission and the Mineral Commission, oversees the programme’s implementation.
This scoping assessment report implemented by the EITI and Open Ownership examines the state of play of beneficial ownership reforms in Ghana.
Ghana’s Petroleum Holding Fund serves as the initial repository of all petroleum revenues due to the state. Revenues are disbursed to the state-owned enterprise GNPC, Ghana Petroleum Funds (Stabilisation and Heritage Funds) and the annual budget based on predetermined formulas.
In addition, 1% of the sum of any upstream contract is allocated to the Local Content Fund. Receivables amounted to USD 155 thousand as of December 2018.
In the mining sector, 20% of mineral royalties are allocated to the Mineral Development Fund. Subnational governments receive royalties and taxes from mining companies, constituting approximately 40% of their budgets. Ground rent payments and 10% of mineral royalties are paid directly to District Assemblies or to the Office of the Administrator of Stool Lands, which transfer the revenue to local governments. The information is disclosed systematically by the Office of the Administrator of Stool Lands.
Recommendations from GHEITI’s reports have led to better monitoring and management of subnational revenues.
GHEITI is administered by the Ghana Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) and operates under the Rules of Procedure (2010). The MSG and national secretariat are hosted by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning. The MSG is currently chaired by Ms Eva Mends, Chief Director, MOF and co-chaired by Dr Steve Manteaw of the Civil Society Constituency. A GHEITI draft bill, which aims to enforce reporting requirements and institutionalise the Ghana EITI process, has yet to be passed in parliament.
Government announces commitment to join the EITI
Multi-stakeholder group is formed
2005 EITI Report published
2006-2008 EITI Report published
First Validation completed - Designated compliant country
2009 EITI Report published
2010-2011 EITI Report published
2012 and 2013 EITI Reports published
2014 EITI Reports published
First Validation (2016 Standard) completed - Found to have made "meaningful progress"
2016 EITI Report published
Second Validation (2016 Standard) completed - Found to have made "meaningful progress"
2017-2018 EITI Report published
2019 EITI Report published
2020 EITI Report (Mining) published
2020 EITI Report (Oil and gas) published
Ghana was found to have made meaningful progress in implementing the 2016 EITI Standard in December 2020, following its third Validation. The Validation identified six corrective actions to be addressed by the country’s next Validation, expected to commence in January 2023.