Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Guyana Office for Investment, Owen Verwey, says Guyana is now a prime investment destination for oil and gas as well as a wide cross section of industries that make up the country’s diverse economy.
Mr. Verwey was one of the featured speakers on day one of the Aberdeen Guyana Gateway virtual investment conference held on August 19 and 20. The GO-Invest CEO said the discovery of over 8 billion of barrels of oil off Guyana’s coast has opened up new investment opportunities which are seeing growing interest from the region and around the world.
With the first phase of oil production started in December 2019 and multiple developments expected in the coming years, there is growing need for increased shorebases, infrastructure development and capacity building. Investment opportunities also exist in banking and finance, manufacturing, logistics services, gold and bauxite mining, logging and wood products, farming and agriculture, aquaculture and agro-processing, telecommunications and ICT, packaging and distribution, media services, shipping, eco-tourism, transportation, real estate and brokerage services.
“From an economic perspective we have an economy which is fairly well balanced from a natural resource-based perspective,” he said. “The oil and gas sector is going to be that monumental driver that is going to take all the other sectors to the next level.”
He urged companies in the UK to look at Guyana, not only for oil and gas, but also for the other opportunities that are available.
Mr. Verwey assured the companies that through Guyana’s Investment Act, their ventures will be protected by the relevant regulatory, legal and fiscal architecture.
He also spoke of the improvements in standards and safety the oil and gas industry is helping to cultivate in the South American country.
“One of the biggest things that the oil discoveries and related activities have brought to the Guyana market is some level of increase in…the health and safety standards in particular by which other sectors operate. We have seen that impact,” he stated.
He said there is an abundance of land in Guyana for agriculture development, and opportunities for doing value added, in addition to manufacturing and other related activities.