Majority Guyanese-owned port facility – Guyana Shorebase Inc. (GYSB) says it has been maximizing the use of local content in its operations, which is in keeping with a request from ExxonMobil for the company to utilize as much services as possible from the South American country.
Glen Lockwood, GYSB General Manager, said when the company was in the process of setting up operations in Guyana, ExxonMobil impressed upon them the need to maximize their use of local content. “When we arrived we were told by Exxon that of course they wanted us to get things up as fast as possible but they also wanted us to maximize the number of local employees and local contractors that we work with and that set us thinking for a minute; how to do this?” he told those gathered for a reception to mark ExxonMobil’s Centre for Local Business Development’s (CLBD) first anniversary on Wednesday.
The best approach, he pointed out, was to find companies that had already done this and bring them in. “When we heard that the Centre for Local Business Development (CLBD) was going to be opened we jumped on the chance to talk to them about how we could actively increase the amount of Guyanese participation that we have in this project.”
Mr. Lockwood said that through consultations with CLBD, the company has been able to benefit in three ways that ultimately serve to ensure use of local content is being maximized. “Those are basically training for our employees, finding sub-contractors and contractors for the work which we are doing, and it’s also use of the portal,” he said, referring to CLBD’s Supplier Registration Portal where over 800 Guyanese companies are currently registered.
Guyanese employees who had no previous experience working at a shorebase have been able to receive training at CLBD in the areas of human resources, procurement and supply management which has enabled GYSB to utilize an increasing number of the local workforce.
The company has also received about 40 sub-contractor contacts from CLBD and has been able to do business with 20 of them to date. “We found that some of the things which we thought we were going to have to import we’re actually finding here locally. All of the bollards on our wharf are made locally; all of the pipe racks which we purchase are made locally. We are doing some projects for other companies such as Halliburton where we are buying local warehouses which are made here in Guyana rather than bringing in pre-fabs like we started to do in the beginning,” he said.
CLBD, Mr. Lockwood pointed out, has been playing an integral role in the company’s push to maximize its use of local content.