Sep 13, 2018 News
The coalition’s plans to establish a Ministry of Energy is unlikely to happen before scheduled general elections in 2020, the year Guyana is expected to commence producing commercial quantities of oil.
Speaking with reporters yesterday at State House, President David Granger said that the establishment of the new Ministry is essentially tied to the Cummingsburg Accord, an agreement on governance signed between coalition parties A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and the Alliance For Change (AFC).
“The present configuration of the Cabinet is determined by the Cummingsburg Accord and we have not increased the number of ministries,” Granger said.
The President explained that after three years in Government, they wouldn’t want to add a new ministry, particularly as the Department of Energy is now being established in terms of its organisation, administration and legislation.
“It probably would not be before 2020 that a full blown ministry could be established. Even if we wanted to do it I think it would be a rushed job. It would be hasty to attempt to do it,” Granger outlined.
The President has said that he is confident of the work that will be executed by the recently appointed head of the newly established Department of Energy, Dr. Mark Bynoe, as the Unit takes off the ground.
Dr. Bynoe, an Environment and Resource Economist was appointed to the post by President Granger. He officially took up the appointment on August 1.
According to President Granger, Dr. Bynoe will be tasked with identifying qualified persons to be part of the department.
“They are working; they are assembling an international team and I think that a two year period is reasonable to have an efficient and effective Ministry,” Granger stated.
Government over the last eight months has been examining the state of the energy industry, especially following the recommendation by Minister of Natural Resources Raphael Trotman that a department be established for this.
Dr. Bynoe has the responsibility of embarking on a four-phase programme for the establishment of the department.
The first phase is administrative in which he will assemble a team of people to work in the department. The second is the issue of rationalisation.
The Head of State said the petroleum units, within the Ministry of Natural Resources and other ministries, will have to be transferred to the department of energy.
The President is expected to receive a full briefing from the new department next month on a range of issues affecting the petroleum sector.
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