Dec 07, 2021 News
Kaieteur News – The Government of Guyana has plans in place to train locals to better regulate the oil and gas sector, giving the country more leverage to hold oil companies accountable.
This was announced yesterday by President Dr. Irfaan Ali, during his address at the Harvard Business School’s, virtual faculty workshop on the Microeconomics of Competitiveness (MOC).
The President was questioned during the forum on what measures will be taken to address the issue of the shortage of skilled and educated labour in Guyana, since it will be in great demand.
In response, President Ali conceded the human capacity deficiency and lack of experience that is required when operating in the oil and gas industries.
He noted however, several efforts are being made by his government to correct this shortfall.
“We recognise there is a gap now and we have to import that skill to fill the gap,” President Ali said.
According to President Ali, the efforts that are being made by his government will enhance local capacity – which he believes will put the country in a better position to hold oil companies accountable, when they fail to operate in accordance with international best practices, which governs the sector.
In fact, Ali said what his government is trying to achieve, is to build local capacity to manage, supervise and to be part of the regulatory framework that they will be putting in place to hold the oil and gas companies accountable.
According to the President, the government also has plans to establish an Oil and Gas training Institute, to further bolster local capacity to meet the demands of the petroleum sector.
To this end, he noted that the government is currently in the process of identifying all the skills requirements for the industry, and will be investing in providing not only the skills, but also the certification that is required by the various industries, for persons to work in the industry.
He explained that government has an aggressive education platform, to address not only the future requirements of the country but the potential moving forward.
Another question posed to President Ali sought to enquire, “…How are you looking at the relationship with the oil companies? What is the role you see them play also beyond their direct role in delivering in that sector?”
In response, the President was keen to note that the country is already recognised for its reputable climate change agenda and despite its new-found oil wealth, will not shift from its itinerary.
As such, he explained that there needs to be a balance between climate change and the operations in Guyana’s oil and gas industries.
According to President Ali, stakeholders, oil companies and the government must operate on a common platform of understanding.
“The companies and the government must have a good working relationship, one in which the policies and agenda of the government in the global context is respected and understood and one in which the government creates a balanced environment for the oil companies because a balanced environment is critical in our global context,” the President said.
To this end, he was adamant, government will not abandon its obligations in relation to climate change and the country’s forest services to the world.
In keeping with his adumbrations, President Ali disclosed that several Bills will be tabled in Guyana’s National Assembly which will help to regulate the country’s oil and gas sectors.
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