Beneficial owners of oil companies to be listed in public registry

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The beneficial ownership roadmap for Guyana has been drafted, and in order to meet the requirements of the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI), come 2020, a public registry of all beneficial owners of companies operating in Guyana’s Oil and Gas industry must be in place.

According to the EITI Standard of 2016, a beneficial owner, in respect of a company means the natural persons who directly or indirectly ultimately own or control the Corporate Entity.

Speaking to OilNOW on the sidelines of the EITI’s two-day International Capacity Workshop in Georgetown, Guyana held on July 9-10,  Gisela Granado, a Country Manager attached to EITI’s Secretariat, stated that the EITI covers the entire value chain in regards to how licenses are allocated, what is produced, how much revenues are earned and how those revenues are distributed.

“One aspect of following transparency throughout the entire process of gaining value in the mining and oil and gas sectors is knowing who are the beneficial owners, who are the real owners…natural persons who own the companies that operate in Guyana. So beneficial ownership becomes an EITI requirement in 2020 and we are working with the Guyanese Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) to get Guyana to a point where they can disclose information on the beneficial owners here,” she explained.

Granado also divulged that the small South American-Caribbean territory will have to specify reporting obligations for Politically Exposed Persons such as Ministers and other Government Officials.

She indicated that Guyana already has certain similar provisions in place, saying “it is my understanding that when companies register here in Guyana, they do provide some information to the relevant authorities. So in the Guyanese instance I think this would involve expanding that to include some information on beneficial ownership…expanding what already exists.”

Under its obligations as an EITI Candidate, Guyana is required to publish its first report by April 2019.

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