Commissioner General of the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA), Godfrey Statia has reached out to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to provide expert support between June and July for the establishment of its Customs Petroleum Unit (CPU).
Guyana Standard was reliably informed that the core objective of the IMF Mission would be geared towards providing remote practical advice and guidance to GRA in fully implementing the action plan to establish the CPU.
There would be a particular focus on assessing the current situation and progress against the action plan previously laid out; assisting in finalizing the CPU structure, including job descriptions; further assistance with Standard Operating Procedures; comment on Staff assignments and training plans; evaluation of the adequacy of IT tools and equipment, and assist with the design of production reports and performance measurement.
Under the auspices of the International Monetary Fund’s Fiscal Affairs Department (IMF-FAD), and in accordance with the recommendations contained in its close-out report of September 2019 titled: Customs Administration of the Oil and Gas Sector, the revenue authority had embarked upon the establishment of an Interim Customs Petroleum Unit (ICPU) in 2019 which should have served as a transitioning vehicle toward the operationalization of a Customs Petroleum Unit within the Customs and Trade Administration (C&TA) of the authority.
The rationale for the establishment of a precursor organizational functional unit centered around: the imminence of oil production and therefore crude lifting from the Floating Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) facility to avoid overtopping in conformance with the Field Development Plan (FDP) and the benefit from an incubator/ laboratory experience as relates to the functions to be assigned the CPU. The IMF had sent a mission in September 2019 to provide support in this regard.
A second mission that was received in February 2020, provided more targeted support to GRA in setting the foundation for the CPU. The achievements of that visit included the constitution of a team of Lifters (Boarding Officers) who perform specified functions aboard the FPSOs; the conduct of 14 Crude Lifts; the development of a short term plan and its approval; identification of extant resource personnel to service the ICPU; the conduct of simulation exercises for Crude Lifting; and advertising of posts externally and internally.
The next mission which would provide virtual assistance is expected to build on the foregoing while assisting GRA in establishing the CPU.