The capabilities of Guyanese businesses in providing services to the emerging oil and gas sector have accelerated over the last two years as more companies move towards building capacity and improving their standards.
In an article published in The Essential Guyana Playbook; a report produced by Energy Voice in association with ABIS Energy, Lars Mangal, Founder and Chairman of TOTALTEC Oilfield Services Ltd., said the development of the oil and gas sector must pivot around the build-out of local capacity.
“Key to this will be the training of Guyanese to enable their participation in the sector, which is a central theme of the government’s plans,” Mangal said, while pointing out that TOTALTEC has been playing a key role in this regard. The company has established an academy where it provides training to Guyanese for work in the oil and gas sector.
“This up-skilling process has accelerated in the last two years and is already feeding into local port services and ancillary onshore support services,” he said. “Guyana is supporting more and more of the supply/utility-related activity such as fuel, pipes, drilling mud, cement and water, which can supply major drilling and production facilities offshore.”
Mangal said once the dredging of access channels to the shore is progressed, Guyana will be able to support heavier industrial related activity such as spool bases and fabrication, along with other specialty services. He pointed out that the country has the potential to host multiple shore bases supporting the various upstream segments under development today and, eventually, as midstream opportunities such as gas-to-power start to develop, these will also require dedicated onshore facilities and infrastructure to support the operations.
“In the meantime, some services will continue to be supplied through Trinidad, the US and elsewhere. But Trinidad will be progressively decommissioned for onshore marine logistics support as Guyana develops its capacity and infrastructure,” Mangal said.
Former Trinidad and Tobago Energy Minister Kevin Ramnarine has said Guyana is on an unprecedented growth trajectory that will see a rapid increase in aggregate demand for goods and services this decade and the country must ensure it has the ability to respond.
“While there will always be some element of uncertainty this expansion must be understood if Guyana is to properly plan its industry to meet the demands of that expansion,” Ramnarine said.
Mangal pointed out that some of the areas for which demand will significantly increase are local onshore technical and engineering services. These will include everything from fabrication to machining, manufacturing, and waste management. He said the scale of these developments will be driven by investment incentives, as well as the long-term outlook for the market.
“But based on the size and quality of ExxonMobil’s discoveries to date, Guyana is now a major stand-alone basin for offshore deepwater development in its own right, with subsea potential on a par with Aberdeen, Stavanger and maybe even the Gulf of Mexico,” he said.
For investors looking at Guyana, Mangal said the key to unlocking value from the country’s opportunities lie in becoming established on the ground, identifying the right local partners to work with and moving quickly to establish a first-mover advantage.