Training, capacity building and having a stake in the operations of businesses entering the country to tap into opportunities in oil and gas are some of the key targets Guyanese are being urged to pursue as the South American country prepares for first oil, now just months away.
This is the advice from Executive Secretary of the Guyana-Ghana Chamber of Commerce, Nuertey Adzeman. Adzeman is also the Executive Director of the Ghana Oil and Gas Service Providers Association. He spoke to the media after signing a two-year Memorandum of Understanding with the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) on Wednesday.
Looking at Ghana’s experience, he suggested that Government not only look at local content, but also local participation. “In our part of the world, the local participation requires that every foreign contractor coming to do business in the oil and gas industry should have an indigenous partner who should have a minimum of ten percent stake of everything in the business,” Adzeman said.
He believes joint ventures is the best way to pursue this, “…because with that the in-country spend will be maintained and you will see your numbers going up and that is where you put your priorities, because you need to put capacity (in that area) as quickly as possible.”
Meanwhile, Loveland White, another member of the Guyana-Ghana Chamber of Commerce spoke about the importance of building local content capacity. She explained that local content regulation goes beyond just employing a number of Guyanese to work with operators.
“They need to build capacity. They need to have knowledge transfer. There should be a succession plan that says if I employ this guy to second an expatriate on the rig, you should give yourself five years to transfer that knowledge to the Guyanese on that project to be able to take-over,” White pointed out.
Guyana’s local content policy is still in its draft stage and Director of the Department of Energy, Dr. Mark Bynoe had promised that it would be finalized in time for first oil, which is expected by the first quarter of 2020.
The signing of the MoU between the two Chambers comes weeks after the visit of Ghanaian President, Nana Akufo-Addo to Guyana, during which time he expressed a willingness to assist Guyana in building its oil and gas capacity.