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Monday, June 14, 2021

Capacity being built to monitor and verify reports on Exxon’s costs, emissions – Vice President

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Guyana’s Vice President, Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo reiterated yesterday that the government has every intention of ensuring the oil sector is not only led by locals but properly monitored as he noted that capacity building is underway to achieve same. In this regard, the official noted that efforts are being made to build capacity within the Guyana Revenue Authority for real time monitoring of development costs submitted by ExxonMobil.

At the moment, Guyana is using the UK’s IHS Markit to complete an audit of ExxonMobil’s US$460M pre-contract costs along with US$1.6 billion in development costs incurred up to 2017 in the Stabroek Block. The official said that the draft report will be sent to ExxonMobil for comments after which it will be determined if the costs would be accepted as is. Jagdeo said there are some adverse findings this far but did not disclose details in this regard.

Further to this, Jagdeo said that the terms of reference have been prepared for the contract to audit costs incurred by ExxonMobil from 2017 to 2020 while adding that Guyanese would have to be included in this process. He said that the PPP/C administration is working to have capacity built to have real time monitoring of costs following this.

With respect to capacity to monitor the environment, he said that is another crucial area that has to be given due attention. In the absence of the technical skills for this area, Guyana has to accept ExxonMobil’s reports on emissions output from flaring for example, as correct. The Vice President is keen on having this state of affairs changed soon.

He concluded, “…So it is not just verifying production per day but how much gas and water are re-injected and the quantity, how much water is discharged and what treatment is taking place as well as what production is taking place on a daily basis so we can have an independent set of numbers coming to us at the end of the day along with their reports.”

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