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Georgetown
Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Early engagement, active gov’t role key to developing local capacity – NOIA

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OilNOW
OilNow is an online-based Information and Resource Centre which serves to complement the work of all stakeholders in the oil and gas sector in Guyana.

Representatives from a group of 25 Canadian organizations on a trade mission to Guyana held a session at the Umana Yana on Wednesday evening, in the country’s capital, Georgetown. Treasurer of the Newfoundland and Labrador Oil and Gas Industries Association (NOIA), Michael Critch, made a brief presentation identifying some of the similarities between the hydrocarbon discoveries in Newfoundland and Guyana.

During his presentation, Critch outlined some of the lessons learnt during the development of the oil and gas industry in Newfoundland and Labrador. He noted that it is important for the government to play an active role in the development of the local supply and service industry.

Critch explained, “We insisted that our government take an active role… take note of trying to get more people trained in the industry and for more local businesses to get help developing the management systems for quality and safety that are required.”

Critch said that while there were successes, there were also challenges. He noted that changing governments, regulations, and ideas all affect the development of the oil and gas industry in a country.

“We should have done more supplier development early – local business, local people development, local training. Some of it would be through funding and some through concessions; it has to be a collaborative approach. No one’s model will fit yours exactly,” he pointed out.

The issue of local capacity development has been discussed widely and a draft Local Content Policy framework was developed by Trinidadian consultant, Anthony Paul. The draft policy has been reviewed by the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI). In a recent meeting with President of the Chamber, Deodat Indar, and the local content consultant, Indar called for a clear definition of “local content”.

Recently, Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman told OilNOW the Guyana government is aiming to make the oil and gas local content framework a “national model”, applying it to other sectors.

ExxonMobil, which is which is set to begin oil production in the South American country in 2020, launched their Centre for Local Business Development earlier this year.

During their visit, the Canadian organisations met with several local companies to discuss possible partnerships.

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