The Trinidad and Tobago Energy Chamber does not appear interested in cooperating with the Guyanese Private Sector. That was indicated when it sponsored a Guyana Safety Forum at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre last week, without consulting with or inviting any of the local business service organisations.
Now, it has been revealed that when the Private Sector Commission (PSC) attempted to forge links with the Trinidadian Chamber, the latter refused to do so.
Former Chair of the PSC, Eddie Boyer, told Kaieteur News that when he headed the Commission, it had pursued the Trinidadian body over the course of three months. The PSC had sought to sign a communiqué as well as a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Chamber.
Despite its attempts, the Chamber, headed by Chief Executive Officer, Thackwray Driver, indicated that it has no interest in partnering with the Commission.
Pointing to Guyana’s relationships with many multinationals, he said that Guyana’s business community does not turn it back on foreign partnerships. Boyer said that it is important for Government to understand that Guyana’s businesses need to develop, and that partnerships are important to build local business capacity.
The Trinidadian Energy Chamber’s CEO had said that businesses from the twin-island nation are not coming to take over, but to find opportunities in a Petroleum Sector that will provide opportunities for everyone.
But the safety forum had drawn heavy criticism from several Private Sector leaders, including the PSC and The Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), when its blatant omission of vital local actors was pegged as total disrespect for Guyana.
GCCI President, Nicholas Deygoo-Boyer, had said that Guyana’s relationship with T&T and other interested foreign actors must be compounded by robust formal policies, including local content policy and legislation, policies around investment promotion and for strengthening of local businesses.
Either that happens, he had indicated, or Guyanese businesses will miss major opportunities due to an uneven playing field.
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