One of the key initiatives for governments of oil-rich West African states is promoting local content. Marathon Oil, EG LNG and AMPCO have been at the forefront of local content development in the oil and gas industry in Equatorial Guinea by investing in programs that equip Equatoguineans with the skills to work in the energy industry and by contracting the services of local companies whenever possible.
Marathon Oil is committed to continued nationalization of its workforce, and at year-end 2013 national employees comprised 71% of its workforce in Equatorial Guinea.
Aggressive recruitment, training and development programs allow national employees to develop the skills needed to succeed in positions traditionally held by expatriates.
“We have progressively increased the number of training and development courses and added advanced-level training, internships, professional development opportunities, such as international assignments, and leadership development programs,” says Cathy Krajicek, Marathon Oil Regional Vice President.
To build local capacity, EG LNG helps local suppliers develop business skills and health/environment/safety awareness to improve operations. Since 2008, EG LNG has held 18 courses in computer skills, finance and accounting, marketing and customer service, and human resources. Together with the Ministry of Economy, in 2012 EG LNG created a Business Doctor’s Office on Bioko Island where local entrepreneurs can seek advice on business-related matters. Due to the popularity of this service, the ministry plans to extend the program to mainland Equatorial Guinea.
Marathon Oil has also worked with the National University of Equatorial Guinea and the Office of Local Content to develop an intensive ESL (English as a second language) program that enables recent university graduates to obtain the language skills required to work in the petroleum sector, as well as numerous community development projects to renovate schools and clinics throughout the island. In addition, for 10 years Marathon Oil employees around the world have supported the Books for Bioko program that provides much-needed school supplies in the Malabo area of Bioko Island. The company’s employees created this program and have donated more than $685,000 to sustain it. Books for Bioko also supports the Awarding Excellence program that rewards students for academic achievements.