GCCI says ‘overwhelming’ number of infrastructure, other work being handled by foreign-owned companies

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Guyanese private sector body, the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) on Friday renewed its call for the government to table legislation covering local content but stressed for this to be done before the end of 2021.

In a statement to the press, the Chamber said it has noted the “overwhelming” number of infrastructure work which is being handled by foreign-owned companies. It also took note of the “high volume of trucking, logistical and other support services which are being operated by foreign-owned companies” particularly related to the oil and gas sector.

GCCI which represents more than 180 private sector companies in Guyana, said too that it has received complaints from members of cases in which they are reportedly being bypassed for work in favour of foreign companies.

“This occurs in spite of the indigenous Guyanese enterprise being both commercially competitive and having the technical capability,” the statement said.

GCCI pointed out that while it remains supportive of foreign investment in Guyana, it should not be done “at the expense and displacement of indigenous Guyanese companies.”

“The Chamber has been encouraged by the posture of the government as it relates to local content and calls on the government to table Local Content legislation before the end of the year,” the statement concluded.

Guyana’s Minister of Natural Resources, Vickram Bharrat back in June, had assured that by the end of this year the government will commence putting into legislation its Local Content Policy.

Tougher local content measures will be implemented if Guyanese are bypassed by oil companies, President warns

Following extended month-long consultations in March, a team from the Ministry of Natural Resources had met with several companies and interested stakeholders regarding the policy. During those sessions, stakeholders were given the opportunity to provide feedback and/or any other contribution for the policy’s finalization.

The policy since those efforts, has remained in draft mode. So too is the legislation.

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