Wednesday, November 30, 2022

As oil production surges, IMF says Guyana making progress in strengthening anti-corruption framework

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History has shown that many oil-producing states often see an increase in corruption with the onset of oil and gas production. Angola, Nigeria, and Uganda are examples of this. In light of this risk, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) was pleased to learn of the progress Guyana is making on its anti-corruption framework.

In a recent report, the financial institution commended the authorities’ good progress in strengthening Guyana’s anti-corruption framework and fiscal transparency and supports further advances. In this regard, the IMF said, “Several pillars of the anti-corruption framework have been recently strengthened, including the Integrity and Public Procurement Commissions (IC and PPC) and the National Procurement and Tender Administration Board (NPTAB).”

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It added, “Audit reports of public expenditures, including for COVID, are published, and their recommendations are followed up on. Asset declarations of a large number of public officials are submitted annually, and public procurement tenders are streamed live.”

In addition to the foregoing, the IMF said the authorities made progress in implementing the recommendations of the 2019 and 2021 EITI (Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative) reports, notably on the reconciliation with the fiscal regime. The financial institution said too that Guyana made progress on information sharing and publication of extractive industries’ financial statements. It was also in high praise of the authorities for strengthening capacity to address remaining gaps, including in moving towards electronic disclosure and adequate follow-up.

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These conclusions were disclosed by the IMF following consultations which were led by Ms. Alina Carare (incoming mission head) and Meredith McIntyre (outgoing mission head) via virtual discussions during May 18 to June 1, 2022, for the 2022 Article IV Consultation. The team met with Senior Finance Minister, Dr. Ashni Singh; Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance, Gail Teixeira; Central Bank Governor, Dr. Gobind Ganga, other senior officials, representatives from the private sector, banks, the opposition party, labor unions, and other stakeholders, including Guyana’s international development partners.

The IMF Executive Board is expected to discuss Guyana’s Article IV consultation on August 3, 2022.

The Fund was keen to note that it stands ready to assist the authorities’ capacity development needs. This includes technical assistance on macroeconomic and fiscal management, development of financial market infrastructure, and strengthening of statistical capabilities.

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