When Guyana discovered oil in 2015, it had no capacity whatsoever to fulfill the ever-increasing needs of the budding sector, but the country has come a far way.
It is now 2022 – seven years on, and the country has nearly 11 billion barrels of proven oil and gas resources in its lucrative Stabroek Block and boasts of having 4,000 locals gainfully employed in the oil and gas sector.
This is according to Guyana’s Minister of Natural Resources, Vickram Bharrat.
“A few years ago, there was zero – nobody employed in the oil and gas sector. Today, luckily, we have 4,000 there, a new sector to us but we are working and still grabbing the opportunities presented to us,” he shared during a recent sod turning ceremony.
Minister Bharrat was keen to note that the rapid progression of Guyana’s oil and gas sector is unheard of. He said Guyana is also setting itself apart from other nations with how closely it works with operators coming in to develop its resources.
“Look at the history of oil-producing nations – Guyana is standing out. We are forging ahead at a pace that has not been seen in small countries. We started producing in December 2019 and just four years after in 2022, we are producing over 300,000 barrels per day. This is something we must be proud of,” the Natural Resource Minister added.
Minister Bharrat reaffirmed the government’s commitment to ensure that Guyana’s oil wealth is enjoyed by every Guyanese in every facet of society.
Guyana’s Local Content Act has only been in place for about six months. The critical piece of legislation outlines strict policies to ensure maximum benefit to Guyanese.
The First Schedule of the Act carves out 40 different services for Guyanese participation via the supply of goods and the provision of services which include: food supply, rental of office space, accommodation, insurance, accounting and legal services.
And with many local companies building on their capacity to service the sector, the government will be undertaking an assessment of the First Schedule to make necessary adjustments.
Meanwhile, as more developments are made offshore Guyana, the need for labour continues to grow. Guyana is already experiencing a shortage of labour though, and the Vice President Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo had signaled intentions to “import labour” for the oil and gas sector and the country’s expanding construction sector.