Georgetown, Guyana — (October 15, 2018) The Governments of Guyana and Newfoundland and Labrador, today, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in the area of oil and gas development.

The MoU was signed by Minister of Business, Mr. Dominic Gaskin and Newfoundland and Labrador’s Minister of Natural Resources, Ms. Siobhan Coady in the Rupununi Room of the Ministry of the Presidency, Georgetown.

The MoU will allow for an exchange of information and experiences concerning the emerging oil and gas sectors, an industry which Newfoundland has been developing for the past 30 years.

“It is important for Guyana that we do develop long term relations and partnerships with partner Governments. As we explore the oil and gas sector, with which we are not too familiar, I think it becomes all the more important that we benefit from the experiences of those who have done this before,” Minister Gaskin said.

Similarly, Minister Coady said through the MoU Guyana stands to benefit from a wealth of knowledge with which to consider when developing the oil and gas sector. “We are here today to work with you and give you the experiences that we have so that you can build and grow your opportunity here in Guyana. We look forward to seeing the growth and development of the oil and gas industry,” she said.

The MoU will facilitate economic cooperation and business opportunities in Guyana and in Newfoundland and Labrador, by organizing reciprocal visits. Moreover, a Joint Working Committee to implement and oversee the Agreement will be established and the Deputy Minister of Natural Resources, Newfoundland and Labrador and the Director Department of Energy, Guyana, Dr. Mark Bynoe will serve as co-chairs of the committee.

The Deputy Minister will be supported by representatives from the Department of Natural Resources, the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation and other departments and agencies as appropriate while, Dr. Bynoe will be supported by representatives from other departments and agencies as appropriate.

The Co-Chairs are required to maintain open and quarterly communications with each other and with relevant industry groups and other non-governmental organizations.

Additionally, an annual work plan is to be developed by the Joint Working Committee and be approved by the Co-Chairs within 30 days after the signing of the MoU. The annual work plan may be amended as deemed necessary, with the mutual consent of Co-Chairs.

According to the MoU, the Co-chairs will provide an annual report to their respective governments on the status of the Agreement and progress made in the work plan. They will also agree to meet on an annual basis to review and assess the progress of initiatives taken pursuant to the MoU and to discuss potential new areas of cooperation that could be reflected in the work plan.

Annual review meetings will alternate between Newfoundland and Labrador and Guyana.

Meanwhile, the MoU states clearly that the parties to the Agreement have the ability to independently determine and pursue their own domestic objectives or priorities.

“Collaboration under this Agreement and the work plan will be realised in accordance with the laws, regulations and policies of each jurisdiction,” the MoU states.

The signing of this MoU builds on over 200 years trade relationship between Guyana and Newfoundland and Labrador. The signing ceremony was also attended by High Commissioner of Canada to Guyana, Ms. Lilian Chatterjee.

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