The Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) has earmarked $100M for the University of Guyana (UG) over the next five years to improve training for technicians in the oil and gas sector.
The issue of raising capacity in the sector was discussed Tuesday in the Cabinet on steps the country is taking to ready for oil.
According to Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman, yesterday, the $100M from GGMC will be released over the next five years and will address more scholarships for students interested in oil and gas.
Additionally, Government is looking to raise the levels at the technical institutes in all three regions to cater for the emerging sector. Already, there have been proposals from colleges abroad to help with the possibilities of pairing with local institutes in Guyana, Trotman disclosed.
Meanwhile, with regards to training and building capacity, Trotman said that Guyana is being proactive in its approach to this emerging sector to ensure that all mechanisms necessary for the effective management and the best outcomes for its people are in place before the first barrel of oil is produced.
“The Government of Guyana, with support from our many partners, seeks to build the capacity of our policy makers, officers, technicians, private sector professionals and all stakeholders on the issues and challenges surrounding this emerging sector. The Government of Guyana recognizes the need for a highly skilled workforce in this sector and as such, we will be investing in building the capacity of our professionals and technicians.”
Some of the external partners involved in the capacity building efforts are the oil companies, the Mexican Embassy which is providing scholarship opportunities, the US Government, the Commonwealth and Chatham House.
“The Ministry is also building its capacity as technical officers are given the opportunity to attend capacity building workshops, seminars, mentoring exchanges and conferences in Kenya, Uganda, Trinidad & Tobago, and the US to name a few. In the new year even greater emphasis will be placed on this aspect of preparation for the oil and gas industry.”
The minister also said that Government intends to keep the stakeholders, including the parliamentary opposition, and the populace, informed and engaged at every stage of the development of the oil and gas sector.
“As such, the Government will in late January 2017 be embarking on a nationwide and diaspora three-month outreach programme to enlighten citizens on the implications and to present proposed policies and legislation pertaining to the various aspects of the evolving oil and gas industry; along with updates on other natural resource industries.”