Despite the numerous warnings of local and international stakeholders on using the approval process for the Payara Field Development Plan as leverage to get a better deal on the oil rich Stabroek Block, the PPP/C Government seems hell bent on going down the same road as its predecessor, the APNU+AFC coalition.
According to Dr. Jerry Jailal, an Education Consultant with over 25 years experience, the PPP/C Government is doing just as the coalition did while in office, which is to not utilize the approval process for FDPs to get more value for Guyana’s resources.
Dr. Jailall in his recent writings, pointed to the fact that the PPP has conveniently used the damning Global Witness report (Signed Away) which says the APNU+AFC signed a bad deal which robbed the nation of US$55 billion. The Education Consultant noted that it was the same Global Witness report that said Guyana should use the approval of the Payara oil permit as a leverage point to renegotiate better contract terms. Dr. Jailall said, “But the PPP is not listening. If the PNC (People’s National Congress) signed a bad deal and sold us out, now that the PPP is in, why is it continuing the bad deal? Is it not wrong when the PPP does it? Exxon badly wants to move forward with the very lucrative Payara oil development and this is the leverage point for Guyana.”
The member of the Oil and Gas Governance Network also said that whatever agreement the Government signs to grant the Payara licence, the country would remain living in persistent poverty. To change this narrative, he insists that Guyana should demand more royalty, more profit sharing, better local content targets, and increase the time limit for completion of audits from the current two-year deadline to a seven-year deadline.
At the end of the day, Dr. Jailall said that the PPP/C should not lose sight of the fact that it has been elected by the people, to effectively manage its resources while securing maximum value. He opined that it would be a shame if anything less is done in this regard.