Nov 03, 2021 Editorial
Kaieteur News – Two of the oil companies exploiting Guyana’s oil wealth are boasting publicly about how well they are doing, or potentially could be doing, given the rich, one-sided deals they have with this country. In fact, to say they are boasting about how their oil deals with Guyana favour them is an understatement. They are so overcome with joy at their good fortune that they are chortling before watching foreign, most likely global, audiences of the incomparable beauty of Guyana’s oil.
What this confirms is how unprecedentedly backward, how financially illiterate, Guyana’s political leaders are. First, leaders in the APNU+AFC coalition government gave away almost everything, while leaving the peoples of this country with the equivalent of next to nothing, so impoverishing is what remains on the table, when the oil companies are done with us. Secondly and not wanting to be outdone, succeeding leaders in the PPP/C Government have done cartwheels to demonstrate to the whole world that they can be more stupid and more generous than the Coalition’s leaders. The very things that PPP/C leaders used to condemn when they were in the opposition, they now allow to flourish, and collaborate with oil powers to rob Guyanese some more.
The oil powers are beside themselves with delight. First, the CEO of Hess Corporation, John Hess, was gurgling so much that his words alone tell of the bounties his company is in line to collect. Specifically, this is what CEO Hess said when he spoke of the Yellowtail Project that is in the works: “This development has simply outstanding financial returns, some of the best in the industry…
So, it’s outstanding economics” (“US$9B Yellowtail Project is the best on the planet, has “outstanding economics” that works in our favour – Hess,” KN October 31).
Of course, it works in Hess’s favour, and what favours the company is devastating for Guyana. “Outstanding financial returns” and “outstanding economics” are part of a vocabulary that everyone understands. What is supremely good and rewarding for Hess is terribly draining for Guyana. Indeed, it is the best on the planet for Hess and its shareholders, and with that we will not argue, no one can.
As if not to be left out in the Guyana celebrations, Exxon’s CEO, Darren Woods, went on CNBC last week, and announced several fabulous developments, most of which are financed by the company’s returns from Guyana. The Exxon CEO announced to the world that the company would: 1) pay off all the debt it borrowed in 2020; 2) buyback US$10 billion of its shares, and 3) Exxon employees will be getting pay raises. We all should be working for Exxon, or be shareholders of the company, so as to be on the receiving end of the handsome rewards handed out with relish and zest.
Guyanese, however, have no such luck, for they are unlucky enough to be saddled with dummies for political leaders in successive governments, who collaborate with foreign oil companies to rip the guts out of the hopes of any Guyanese daring to dream about this oil wealth of ours. When the foreign oil companies celebrate publicly, we are forced to hang our heads in shame at how utterly miserable we appear before the world, and how poor we will continue to be for the next several generations. Instead of linking arms to stand shoulder to shoulder against foreign oil companies, Guyana’s political leaders look to dig up and hurl dirt at foes. While our leading politicians engage in these games, oil companies laugh at us, and make a mockery of our prospects.
The only foreign oil power to remain quiet (so far) on its oil blessings from Guyana is the Chinese company that is part of the consortium exploring for oil here. The wise Chinese prefer to hold their cards close to their chest, say nothing, and let the Westerners do the public dancing. It is the grave of Guyanese on which arrogant and insensitive American oil powers are dancing, when they boast so unrestrainedly, but so accurately.
Our leaders should hang their heads, if not themselves, for the abominations heaped upon Guyanese citizens. They enrich outsiders and themselves and their friends and families. It is goodbye to Guyanese hopes and dreams.
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