Georgetown, Guyana—(December 15, 2021) His Excellency Dr Irfaan Ali today highlighted the need for the Local Content Bill and its overall importance to the development of Guyanese businesses.
Along with its many immediate advantages, the President noted that the bill is a living document that will be “transitional and transactional”.
The Head of State made these comments at the official opening of the corporate office of SBM Offshore on Sherriff Street this afternoon.
He said that the bill will ensure “that there is enough scope through a legislative framework that incentivises investment from the local private sector” and enables them to be an important party to the development of the oil and gas sector.
President Ali pointed out that the opportunities will increase as the country progresses and as “we build the capacity, as we develop the skills and as we have greater investments in the sector”.
He spoke of its directional pathway and indicated that with the right type of integration, through consortiums and established business models, there will be room for massive growth and investment by Guyanese companies.
“So as we move to this very important part of the advancement of this sector, I want us to be conscious of the realities. I want us to be conscious of the opportunities,and I’m proud of the product.”
NOT DRAFTED IN A VACUUM
The President said that the bill took great dynamism and effort and a conscious approach by the private sector, the Government and other stakeholders to arrive at a position that is beyond a starting point.
“It is not a bill that is drafted in vacuum….The issue of having local content is one that requires balance; itrequires a thorough and sometimes sophisticated understanding of the realistic opportunities that are inherent in the development of a new sector like oil and gas.”
The Head of State also underscored that national development is not only about the development of oil and gas but also the development of the non-oil sectors.
“We have made it very clear that the resources here must be able to create opportunities elsewhere.”
He said that on a fundamental level, the immediate needs of the economy are to create sustainable options for Guyanese, to enhance their livelihoods and create jobs opportunities.
“Don’t believe you can go and say ‘oh let’s put up the money and save it’. We have to, first of all, create an environment and an economy that is strong, stable and resilient. That requires investment, and then we have to set again a graduated framework in which we secure the future.”