…secures multi-million-dollar contract with Oil Company
A large multi-million-dollar contract recently handed to Trinidad and Tobago (T&T)-based, Ramps Logistics, has raised eyebrows among domestic counterparts, since, according to sources, the contract demonstrates the inability of locals to compete with foreigners when it comes to servicing the emerging oil and gas sector.
This publication has learnt that the contract was awarded to Ramps for the supply of consumables and logistics by Tullow Oil but domestic companies lost out since the T&T Company managed to under bid each of the local counterparts.
It was explained that this was done since when a Request for Quotation (RFQ) is invited by the companies such as Tullow, an estimate or bid is prepared to include applicable duties and taxes that will have to be paid.
Private Sector representatives have since outlined that companies such as Ramps Logistics are allowed to import duty free into the country and are also granted a range of waivers.
What this leads to, is the ability to significantly under bid local counterparts.
“They are bringing in everything duty free, they can quote less than what we can quote,” one supplier told this publication.
It was explained, too, that many large suppliers in Guyana are also unable to compete with the plethora of companies that have begun incorporating offices in the country.
One supplier told this publication there are those that would have built capacity over the years using large machinery, and vehicles and would have been involved in shipping and other related arrangements.
Despite calls for increased local content, the supplier explained that there is no level playing field since those companies would have already made significant purchases over time all of which would have attracted import and other duties.
“Local companies cannot compete against entities such as Ramps Logistics since the playing field is not level in terms of rules and in terms of the players.”
One supplier said, “…We are not against foreign companies entering the market but what we are against is the policy of the government that allows these companies to come and take advantage through unfair competition fostered by the uneven playing field.”
The contract that has brought the “bureaucratic hurdle” was given to the T&T based company by Tullow Oil ahead of its discoveries at the Orinduik Block offshore Guyana.
Tullow which serves as the operator with a 60 percent stake in the block recently announced two oil discoveries in Guyana at the Jethro-1 well and the Joe-1 well in August and September last.
Ramps Logistics secured a fully integrated cross-border logistics contract inclusive of Shore Base provision and management, marine agency, personnel logistics, freight forwarding and customs brokerage, with UK-based Tullow Oil for its upcoming Guyana drill campaign.
Further to this, a host of third party services such as waste disposal, tank cleaning and CCU provisions have been secured.
The company has since been featured in the November 13 Trinidad Express boasting about being in Guyana at the right time and place.
It was suggested by local suppliers that, “with duty free approval being handed to these companies to clear and deliver their imports, suppliers contend that preaching local content by government does not hold water.”
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