The 2nd Local content convention opened its doors on Wednesday bringing together players from the government and private sector to discuss ways of enabling local companies to participate in the ongoing oil and gas exploration in the region.
The convention opened by Kenya’s deputy president William Ruto saw a high panel of delegates from various fields with Ruto calling for the discussions to lead to the development of a network of competitive and efficient local suppliers who can contribute inputs to the extractive sector and in the process create jobs, increase incomes for workers, and improve skills in companies and the workforce.
Ruto also called on international companies transfer unique technical skills, game changing technology and world class expertise in the oil sector.
“This is what partnership means; sharing what you know and learning from each other. It would be a crying shame if decades from now we will not have built up the local technical capacity required in all aspects of the business,” Ruto told delegates.
Other speakers emphasized on the need for the country to identify and develop capacities and capabilities needed going forward.
Head of Human Resource at Tullow Oil Kenya called for stakeholders to assess the required capabilities needed to deploy local experts while at the same time design mechanisms to report, monitor and evaluae the progress.
Ken Mugambi from National Oil Corporation said the government company had a role to play in setting the way forward for IOCs in regards to local content.
According to Mugambi the country must identify areas of strengths as to which it can pursue as a clutter and make a name for itself.
“Such clusters include oilfield services, machinery, petrochemicals, fertilizers among others,”- Ken Mugambi told the gathering.
He added that NOC had role in funding, acquisition of technology, access to data, applicable research linkage and support.
Other speakers focused on ways the county’s can incorporate their citizens as well as the policy, legal and regulatory framework needed for oil, gas and mining.
The conference continues tomorrow where attention will focus in how to build capacity, negative results of legislating local content and lessons from other countries and regions.