Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Exxon targeting 75% Guyanese workforce for Yellowtail oil production vessel – report

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After eight years of operations offshore Guyana, ExxonMobil expects around 75% of the workforce on the giant Yellowtail Floating, Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel will be Guyanese, starting from an initial 25%.

This is according to the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the project. That document notes that there will be a demand of up to 540 persons (at peak, assuming up to three drill ships are operating concurrently) required to drill and complete the Yellowtail development wells. Exxon said the majority of these personnel will work in the offshore environment on drill ships while adding that most of these roles will require prior offshore oil and gas industry experience and specialized expertise.

Be that as it may, the oil giant said prior development of the Liza Phase 1, Liza Phase 2, and Payara projects will allow for continuous capacity building of the local workforce, as additional personnel are upskilled and given greater responsibilities. The company said this will create opportunities to increase the pool of semi-skilled and skilled workers that can support the GY$1.8 trillion project.

Exxon says goal is to have 75% Guyanese workforce on each FPSO

Expounding further, the company said there will be a demand for approximately 600 workers required to mobilize, install, and hook up the FPSO and related equipment. Exxon said the installation stage will provide only short-term opportunities for Guyanese workforce, as a majority of these personnel will work in the offshore environment and will require specific technical skills and experience.

During long-term production operations, it said the direct offshore workforce will peak at around 100 to 140 people during periods of higher maintenance activity and during offloading of the FPSO. But in order to provide long-term, sustainable opportunities for Guyanese workers, Exxon said the project has established specific targets for the Guyanese workforce on the FPSO during production operations. It was at this point that the company noted that an initial local content target for its workforce is pegged at 25 percent with an increase to approximately 75 percent by the end of 8 years of operation.

Guyana can become a regional source for expertise in oil and gas – Exxon Production Manager

In the interim, the company said it is working closely with its contractors and subcontractors in identifying additional suitable opportunities for Guyanese workforce development.  It said, too, that it has encouraged its contractors and subcontractors to implement a transparent process to advertise job opportunities locally and receive applications from potential candidates. As an example, in this regard, Exxon said advertisements for operations and maintenance are distributed throughout Guyana through the Regional Democratic Councils, which then share these with Neighbourhood Democratic Councils, the National Toshaos Council, the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples, the Council of Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) (to all technical institutes and centers), and the Indigenous Peoples Association.

Exxon was keen to note as well that it is committed to exploring various training formats that may include but are not limited to, on-the-job training, mentoring, classroom training, e-learning, and self-taught programs. In addition, it said contractors and subcontractors are evaluating other training options in collaboration with local institutions to build capacity of potential candidates prior to the start of the work. These institutions include existing vocational and technical education institutions and centers, the Aeronautical Institute, and University of Guyana.

Guyanese workers assemble massive subsea jumpers for Liza Phase 2 Development

Just this week, SBM Offshore, builder and operator of the FPSOs which have so far been sanctioned for Exxon’s Guyana operations, began a new round of advertising for its Trainee Technician Programme where the company is seeking Guyanese applicants.

Through the Greater Guyana Initiative (funded by the Stabroek Block co-venturers), Exxon has launched several programmes with the Council for TVET, including Basic Industrial Safety Training as well as two pilot programmes in Linden and New Amsterdam for electrical and welding. In addition, it has launched Zoom Rooms at the University of Guyana, allowing for more than 600 students and instructors to interact. At the University of Guyana, a Professor of Practice Programme is also progressing.

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