Latest update March 25th, 2023 12:37 AM
Mar 07, 2023 News
Kaieteur News – A recent report on Guyana’s money laundering vulnerabilities has called for greater disclosures in the nation’s oil sector.
Specifically, the National Risk Assessments report states that the annual budgets and work programmes for oil companies ought to be made public. In so doing, the report states that Guyana would bring itself into greater compliance with the requirements of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI).
Since 2003, EITI has served as a global standard for the good governance of oil, gas and mineral resources. Through various reporting standards, the global watch dog seeks to address key governance issues in the extractive sectors. As a member, Guyana has committed to complying with EITI’s reporting requirements.
In the document seen by this newspaper, the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) explained that oil companies’ annual work programmes and budgets are presented an annual technical/business meeting between the companies and government.
The report states that approval is granted after the Guyana Government is satisfied that the work programme meets the obligation as cited in the Production Sharing Agreement (PSA). The document also states that numerous persons are involved in this process as matters such as technical, financial, industrial and managerial competencies of the companies are examined as well as the training for Guyanese and opportunities for Guyanese businesses.
The report notes however that since Guyana is a member of EITI, that organization requires public disclosure of these programmes as well as other information about the governance and management of the sector, thereby allowing stakeholders to understand the potential impacts of the sector. The report also notes that EITI Requirement 5 requires the disclosure of information related to revenue allocations in an effort to enable stakeholders to understand how revenues are recorded in the national budget and where applicable subnational budgets as well as track social expenditures by companies.
With the foregoing disclosures and oversight by the multi-stakeholder group which comprise civil society, industry and government, the report said the conditions would be created for greater transparency and accountability in the governance and management of the sector and will serve to mitigate corruption or ineffective regulatory governance of the sector.
Guyana’s journey to EITI membership began on 4 May 2010 where the Government of Guyana expressed Guyana’s commitment to implement EITI. On the May 15, 2012, the government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). The commitment to implement EITI was reinforced on December 22, 2015 when the Government publicly announced its intention to continue Guyana’s commitment to EITI implementation.
In February 2017, the GYEITI multi-stakeholder group was officially launched which comprises 12 members with four representatives each from civil society, government and industry. In August 2017 Guyana completed all the sign-up requirements and submitted its application to the EITI International Secretariat and on the 25 October 2017, Guyana attained recognition as an EITI Candidate Country. The oil producing state was recently suspended for failing to meet the reporting deadline for its 2020 report. It has up to May, 2023 to rectify this state of affairs or risk further consequences.
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