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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Avoiding the oil curse in Ghana: is transparency sufficient?
Author:Obeng-Odoom, FranklinISNI
Periodical:African journal of international affairs = Revue africaine des affaires internationales (ISSN 0850-7902)
Geographic term:Ghana
Subjects:hydrocarbon policy
Abstract:This article first discusses the resource curse thesis, the phenomenon where the presence of natural resources like oil leads to stagnation or retrogression in the fortunes of the host country, also called the 'paradox of plenty', by looking both at the theory and at empirical evidence from Africa. Secondly, it examines the effectiveness of 'good governance', particularly transparency, as a key policy prescription, which the government of Ghana is pursuing to avert a possible resource curse. It assesses measures put in place by the Ghanaian government to manage the country's newly found oil and shows that two actors - 'oil communities' and oil companies - have been 'forgotten' by the government although they are critical to unlocking the so-called 'oil blessing'. It is argued that the current oil policies do not sufficiently account for the peculiar needs of the communities in which oil will be drilled. The existing policy paradigm implies that the activities of the oil companies might set in motion corrupt practices among public officials and worsen the plight of the poor. The article also discusses the lessons of the Nigerian case for Ghana. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract, edited]