…says Guyana has no experience in the field
Overseas experts are likely to be contracted to work in the Department of Energy, within the Ministry of the Presidency.
This is according to President David Granger on Wednesday who hinted the possibility to the media, highlighting that “Guyana has no experience in the field.”
“We have a roadmap. We have to identify personnel, identify a building, we have to start advertising to attract the quality personnel that will lead this important department into the future,” the President said in an interview.
However, he asserted that Government is “aiming to get the best persons…we obviously have to attract the best people from around the world…” even with the lack of experience in Guyana and the fact that “we have a very small Petroleum Unit- which is now within the Ministry of Natural Resources.”
In March of 2018, State Minister, Joseph Harmon announced that Cabinet had given its approval for the establishment of a Department of Energy within the Ministry of Presidency that will take over the responsibility of the Oil and Gas Sector from the Natural Resources Ministry.
Questioned as to who would head the Department, at the time, Harmon noted that while a “head” had not been identified yet, he had ultimate responsibility for the unit.
Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman had said that “all policy matters, including, but not limited to, the negotiating and entering into contracts, and issuing of licences for exploration and production, be transferred/re-assigned to the Ministry of the Presidency and placed within a Department of Energy and Development.”
Trotman, and the coalition Government as a whole, has received much criticism for the manner in which the emerging oil and gas sector is being handled.
Since the revelation of a secret US$18M signing bonus, the emerging sector has been mired in controversy.
Moreover, the political Opposition and experts in the field continue to critcise the re-negotiated Petroleum agreement that Government signed with ExxonMobil, which they said will see Guyana losing out millions in revenue as the contract is more favoured towards the oil giant than it is towards Guyana.
This has since prompted the Natural Resources Minister to outline that ‘there may be a number of things the government will want to address when the ExxonMobil contract is up for review.’
All terms of the ExxonMobil Petroleum Agreement will be up for review in four years.