ACCRA, June 10 (Reuters) - A high court in Ghana's western region has ordered the state-run Ghana National Gas Company (Ghana Gas) to stop construction at a gas plant until the government pays land compensation to local chiefs, the company said on Tuesday.
The $650 million plant is designed to process gas from the offshore Jubilee field but completion has been delayed, curbing oil production capacity in Ghana, a country that also exports gold and cocoa.
"The (traditional) chiefs went to court and obtained a 14-day interim restraining order against Ghana Gas. This means we will have to stop work at the site and resolve this issue quickly," Ghana Gas spokesman Alfred Ogbamey said.
"We are in talks with the chiefs and we will be going back to court quickly to have the restraining order lifted so that work can continue while we also sort out the compensation issues amicably," he said.
The company still has to tie deepwater pipes to offshore production to make its September completion target, he said. Ghana Gas in February signed an agreement with Tullow Oil , lead operators of the Jubilee field.
The government hopes that the gas project's completion will boost power supply and help reduce spending on light crude imports for thermal power generation.
(Reporting by Kwasi Kpodo; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg and David Evans)
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