–UNDP Report warns
In aspiring to benefit from petroleum extraction, Guyana will need to have a clear picture of its priorities and aspirations sooner rather than later. This is according to a crucial report that was facilitated by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). It was written by Anthony Paul, Principal Consultant of the Association of Caribbean Energy Specialists Ltd.
In the report, Paul notes that as the industry spans several election cycles, it is important that some national consensus be developed on the outlook for key aspects of the state of the nation, resulting from activities from the sector. He opined that this should galvanize the nation around a shared national vision and aspiration and help investor confidence by reducing uncertainty around government’s decision making drivers.
Ideally, the Oil and Gas consultant said that this national vision should be integrated into national development plans that integrate the role of the petroleum sector. For this, he said that a vision of the sector is also needed. Given the long term nature of national visions, Paul expressed that they are best prepared through a consultative process that is not perceived to be an initiative of the incumbent government and has civil society, communities and respected individuals as valued contributors and leaders of the process.
Paul said, “As important as this is for framing the subsequent stages, from policy onwards, this stage is often ignored or improperly developed. One reason is that it requires deep specialist analysis of the sector, to be combined with a clear assessment of the country’s consensus on its development outcome.”
The Chatham House Advisor said that another is, that it may require the government appearing not to be the driving force behind it. Paul shared that the status quo analysis requires good understanding of the geological potential, the economics of developing and producing the resource, market conditions and the country’s current development state and priorities for moving forward.
“Unfortunately, countries new to oil and gas do not have the capabilities to properly undertake all these analyses. Often they depend on development partners whose models of engagement are based on development economists, whose expertise and market are very different from the capabilities required in oil and gas. As a compromise, development agencies tend to rely on academics for their analyses.”
Without deep practical experience, Paul said that these can be of very limited value. In fact, he noted that they can lead the development partner and country into a false sense of security by countries, believing that the recommendations they have in hand are adequate.
Oct 16, 2018By Sean Devers in Trinidad In association with Regal, Vnet, Noble House Seafoods & Cascadia Hotel In murky conditions and played before virtually empty stands, Guyana Jaguars, led by a 79-run...
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