By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Logging contracts between the Government of Guyana and international logging companies Bai Shan Lin and Vaitarna could be scrapped as early as 2016 if the two companies do not honour the stipulations in the contracts.
The companies have been operating in Guyana for more than a decade each and in their contractual agreements with the government, had promised the setting up of wood processing plants in Guyana.
In addition to providing jobs, these plants would see value-added wood products being made in Guyana with a number of lucrative opportunities existing for investors interested in working with Guyana’s wood industry. These include furniture, plywood and veneers, mouldings and doors, parquet, floor tiles, and other related products.
Minister of Governance, Raphael Trotman who has some responsibility for the natural resources sector, on Wednesday July 29, said both have been spoken to already and gave a commitment that within a matter of months they will address the value added concern.
Trotman expects the two companies to honour their obligations in the coming months or it could mean goodbye for them.
“We are in July and I expect to see before the end of the year Value added products being produced by these two companies. If not their contracts will have to be reviewed for termination,” said the Governance Minister.
Pointing to concessions currently being offered to mining and logging companies, Trotman stated that a general review of these is underway.
“We have got to look at jobs, we have to look at taxes paid…we have got to look at concessions for duty free vehicles, value added so that requires a studied review and yes that review is undergoing,” he said.