The Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC), is appealing to oil marketing giant, GOIL, to reconsider its decision to suspend its membership from the Association of Oil Marketing Companies (AOMCs).
COPEC’s Executive Director, Duncan Amoah in an interview on Eyewitness News said the exit of GOIL from the AOMCs could weaken the association since GOIL is the biggest player in the industry.
“We would beg that GOIL should reconsider their position because once they leave, it weakens the association and as a business association, if the larger player is no longer part of it, you could as well imagine what becomes of the association as far as their decision and pressures they want to exert on government is concerned,” he said.
GOIL on Wednesday announced its withdrawal from the Association of Oil Marketing Companies (AOMCs) following allegations by the leadership of the association that the government influenced the company to reduce the price of its petroleum products.
In a statement, the company sharply criticized the AOMCs for peddling such a claim against it and described it as “gross disrespect.”
“We at GOIL believe that the Association has shown gross disrespect to the company and treated it with contempt and public ridicule and has therefore decided to suspend its membership of the Association immediately,” GOIL said in its statement.
But Duncan Amoah said while the position of GOIL is understandable, it should not severe ties with the association in order to ensure that the association maintains its strong collective bargaining power and influence.
“Some initial talks has gone on and GOIL is really not too enthused about the position that the association took although they also did not take that position in a vacuum except to say that as a member of their association, the onus would have been bigger on them to consult or to ask and possibly also make an informed position on that issue but this is one of the things that we never really expected,” he said.
Duncan Amoah cautioned that should GOlL completely fall out with the association, the oil marketers may not have the required muscle to press home certain demands especially from the government.
“GOIL is the largest currently [in the market]. [Their exit] would have a lot of influence. What GOIL’s suspension will do to the association is to weaken it, not peripherally but from the centre because for every 1 in five Ghanaians that buy fuel, they buy from GOIL. The association would need the full force of its membership in order that if there are things that they do not agree especially with government, they will be able to have the collective bargaining power and pressure to get certain things done for their members,” he said.