Even as Guyana prepares for the compilation and publication of its second Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Report for fiscal year 2018, the country is rapidly getting set for its first EITI validation, due to commence in October 2020.
Over the past several weeks, staff of the Guyana EITI Secretariat, members of the Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) and senior functionaries of Government reporting agencies have been engaging in a number of online webinars and other fora to discuss some of the challenges being faced in light of the restrictions for combatting the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and the ongoing political impasse, which means that some of the required legislative changes that the first report recommended cannot be addressed at this time. It is unclear how these two major hindrances will affect both the upcoming EITI validation and the compilation and publication of the second EITI Report.
The validation exercise will be based on the first EITI Report, published in April 2019. On June 11, 2020 the Government of Guyana through the Ministry of the Presidency signed a contract with BDO LLP for consultancy services with regards to the preparation of Guyana’s second EITI Report due by year-end 2020.
Funding for the consultancy was made under a project entitled the Guyana Oil and Gas Capacity Building Project which is supported by the World Bank. That project is intended to bolster the Guyana Government’s capacity to achieve its management goals in the petroleum sector.
Validation serves not only to assess performance but also to promote dialogue and learning at the country level. Validation also safeguards the integrity of the EITI by holding implementing countries to the same standard.
The EITI is a global standard aimed at promoting transparency and accountability in the oil, gas and mining sectors. It is a robust yet flexible methodology for disclosure and reconciling company payments and government revenues in implementing countries.
Government, on behalf of the GYEITI Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) and on its own behalf, sought a competent and credible firm, free from conflicts of interest to provide Independent Administrator services in accordance with the EITI Standard and with the directions of the MSG.
BDO LLP which was the firm contracted to prepare Guyana’s first EITI Report made public on April 25, 2019, is expected to:
- Prepare a Gap Analysis that covers the position between the scoping study and present reality
- Review all relevant legislation for conformance to EITI standards and make recommendations for any possible changes
- Produce Guyana’s second EITI Report in 2020 in accordance with the EITI Standards 2019
- Identify actions to be taken to address the recommendations from the first EITI Report for fiscal year 2018