Govt starting national local content sensitisation – Min. Bharrat
The government, through the Ministry of Natural Resources, is set to commence nationwide sensitisation workshops on the Local Content Legislation.
These sessions aim to educate individuals on how they can benefit directly from the oil and gas sector while assessing the country’s capacity to supply goods and services to the petroleum industry.
During a recent press conference at the Guyana Marriott Hotel in Kingston, Georgetown, Minister of Natural Resources, Vickram Bharrat revealed that the workshops will commence after the passage of the 2024 national budget.
“We here in Georgetown, we hear about it every day, we are part of it, we benefit from it, but if you go maybe to Kwakwani, Crabwook Creek, Essequibo coast [or] to Region Nine, Lethem, they probably heard about it…saw it on the news but they don’t know exactly how they can actually benefit from the local content legislation,” the minister explained.
According to the minister, during the drafting of the bill, there was a lack of understanding of the private sector’s capabilities, and this campaign aims to address that knowledge gap.
He pointed out that the sensitisation campaign is not intended to bring about changes to the legislation. Instead, it aims to provide a clearer understanding of the country’s capacity.
“By going around the country and by listening to people and engaging them, I think it would put us as a ministry and government in a better position to assess what has changed from 2021 to now in terms of capacity to offer services to the oil and gas companies,” he stated.
Additionally, Minister Bharrat noted that other grey areas will also be strengthened, allowing Guyanese to benefit directly from the oil and gas sector.
The natural resources minister also highlighted the importance of refining provisions related to the qualifications for Guyanese citizenship.
He said the goal is to enhance due diligence procedures, particularly in response to complaints about delays in processing certificates from the local content secretariat, often stemming from attempts to misrepresent affiliations with companies.
Meanwhile, since the local content legislation was passed in December 2021, there have been several joint ventures and partnerships between international investors and the local private sector.