GCCI’s proposed local content legislation for oil & gas delayed

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GCCI President, Deodat Indar

The Georgetown Chamber of Commerce’s (GCCI) fight for local content legislation to be enacted for the oil and gas sector has been met with further delay as Government is not too keen on having this implemented anytime soon.

In a move to safeguard the rights of Guyanese businesses, the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) had submitted a model local content legislation to the Government of Guyana for consideration.

But according to President of the GCCI Deodat Indaar, having met with several top government officials to discuss this, the chamber is convinced that this will be delayed.

“We did not get word on Government’s response to the legislation so right now we are unsure of where Government is going in terms of inactive local office legislation” Indar revealed.

Indar has expressed GCCI’s disappointment that there is no legislative framework since 2015 when the first oil discovery was made in the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana.

Speaking with the online publication via telephone on Tuesday Indaar said Government has proposed finalising the Local Content Policy first before consideration is given to tabling legislation.

The second review of the local content policy is expected to be completed by the first quarter of next year.

The model legislation defines Guyanese companies as companies that are registered in Guyana where 51 per cent of the share capital are owned by citizens of Guyana.

In addition to that it stipulates that the board meetings of the said companies are held in Guyana; the head office of the company is located in Guyana and; 70 per cent of the workforce of the company follows suit with the definition of a citizen of Guyana.

Another section of the bill stipulates that an operator or contractor must ensure that first consideration is given to Guyanese companies in the provision of goods and or services directly related to the petroleum industry.

The GCCI is the only private sector body that has been pushing to have Guyanese businesses to cash in on the opportunities from this new and emerging sector.

The Chamber has stated that local businesses can provide a whole host of services that include: logistics, catering, and freight forwarding, among.

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