Government exploring value-added options to yield benefits to present and future generations in Forestry Sector after BCL signals desire not to renew its forest concessions agreement.
Ministry of Natural Resources, Guyana, October 20, 2016
The Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) advises that Barama Company Limited (BCL) has notified the Government of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana that it has opted not to renew its Forest Concession Agreement which expired on October 15, 2016, after a period of twenty-five (25) years.
The MNR notes that discussions on the renewal had commenced over a year ago; with BCL being provided with a draft Agreement for review and negotiations. BCL in communicating its decision not to renew noted that the Company concluded that it was no longer viable to continue in the forestry operations in view of prevailing global prices.
The MNR notes that the decision of BCL presents an opportunity to engage in a stocktaking exercise where Government can objectively assess the value of the standing forest through its contribution to the ecosystem while simultaneously examining the value of the past 25 years to the people of Guyana. Such an exercise would be pivotal in decision-making as it relates to economic empowerment and development of sustainable livelihoods of present and future generations. Following the review, the Guyana Forestry Commission will shortly be making a determination about the future allocation of the Barama concession.
The MNR has mandated the Guyana Forestry Commission to work with BCL to ensure a smooth closure of all concession related activities within the stipulated period, and to ensure that all labour and other related issues are fully addressed the holistic manner in keeping with applicable laws and regulations.
The Government thanks BCL for its involvement over the past twenty-five years, and will be engaging the company in further discussions on its stated interest in the continuation of the added value activities.