Ahead of its April 25, 2019 reporting deadline, the Guyana Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (GYEITI) on Tuesday met with stakeholders at Cara Lodge, Quamina Street, Georgetown.
After becoming a candidate of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in October 2017, the Guyana Government now has the task of compiling its first annual report. That report is due on April 25, 2019.
This is according to Coordinator of the GYEITI Secretariat, Dr. Rudy Jadoopat, who took the opportunity to appeal to stakeholders to support the process. He said, unfortunately, not all Government agencies have been providing the information requested by GYEITI.
“We have been communicating with the Government agencies and with companies to see how we can get them to come on board and understand the EITI process and get them to buy-in, so to speak,” Dr. Jadoopat pointed out.
The independent administrator BDO LLP – a United Kingdom (UK) Accountancy and Advisory firm – is currently assisting Guyana in preparing its first EITI Report.
Benn Toorabally, Senior Manager at the Independent Administrator, BDO LLP, said, “In the context of Guyana, there has been a lot of challenges and I think transparency is the way forward.” He noted that the promotion of transparency is of utmost importance as it will increase the country’s investment potential and investor confidence.
Toorabally also added, “This workshop is a crucial step towards the completion of the EITI report.”
Another representative of the company, Rached Maaljet said one of the challenges currently faced is that they are unable to access certain data that needs to be provided by the Guyana Revenue Authority, due to legal constraints.
“There are a few sections of the law which states that GRA is not allowed to share information on taxpayers unless it has been authorized by an authority and another section says unless it is allowed by the President,” he explained.
He encouraged the Government of Guyana to consider implementing waivers in order to overcome this difficulty.
Meanwhile, 9 oil and gas and 25 mining entities are required to submit reporting templates to the GYEITI secretariat, as part of this process.
Additionally, six Government agencies: the Guyana Revenue Authority, Guyana Geology and Mines Commission, Guyana Gold Board, Environmental Protection Agency, National Insurance Scheme and Ministry of Finance, are also required to submit reporting templates based on the payments received from the extractive companies.