Mr. Clement Duncan, one of the directors of the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA) is saying that its members are opposed to any energy audit the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) wishes to carry out.
This comment was made on Thursday at a key seminar targeted specifically at Chief Executive Officers, senior managers in decision making positions.
The forum was held at the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre (Red House) in Kingston, Georgetown.
The landmark Energy Efficiency Management Project is being conducted by the GMSA and is approaching the end of its initial stages.
According to Duncan, this project in particular, is critical to the development of enterprises in Guyana. It directly addresses the often contentious issue of high energy costs, and is aimed at sensitizing companies to the best means of measuring and managing their energy distribution equipment and consumption.
The workshop had many focal points. Those in attendance were able to voice their concerns with regard to energy management and discuss the findings and recommendations of Energy Management specialist Dr. Carl Duncan.
Dr. Duncan had conducted a study on several local companies representing the food processing, manufacturing and services sectors. He is a member of the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and of other prestigious international institutions.
He said that energy monitoring is the first step towards careful management of consumption.
At the forum, the issue of not having companies that supply metering equipment to measure and better manage energy consumption came up. These are not available in Guyana. It was also strongly suggested that moves be made to implement such a system to reduce the amount of expensive equipment that would have to be imported.
Dr. Mahender Sharma, the Chief Executive Officer of the GEA, also said that his organization carries out audits for companies to help them better manage their energy consumption thereby saving millions of dollars in the long run.
He said that his organization would be more than happy to help the manufacturing sector and other institutions manage their consumption. However, this comment was met with immediate rejection as those in attendance expressed that they were not too keen on being audited by a Government owned company.
Dr. Sharma then pointed to the fact that he believes that people see the word “audit” and think that it means that everything about them will be checked or reviewed under a microscope when in fact that is entirely untrue as it relates to an energy audit. He said that an energy audit will only seek to help the companies to benefit in the grand scheme of things.
He added that he is unsure why companies would be opposed to an audit unless they are doing something illegal.
It was here that Mr. Duncan said that it’s normal for companies not to be too fond of being audited by a government controlled agency. He said, “Anything Government owned is government controlled and even members of the GMSA would not be open to audits by the GEA, because they fear that certain sensitive information will be leaked to certain government officials. It’s as simple as that. And in order for any audit to take place it is preferred that it be done by an independent body.”
Nevertheless, the project designer said that the data accumulated throughout the project will be placed into a national business model applicable to the wide spectrum of enterprises on the Guyanese business landscape.
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