Raphael Trotman, Natural Resources Ministry still has active role in Energy Sector
Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman
By Kaieteur News
Petroleumworld 10 17 2018
The Ministry of Natural Resources is unable to completely divorce itself from oil and gas related matters at this time. This is simply because the Ministry is still in control of finances for the sector.
Yesterday, the Ministry said that that status quo will remain until Budget 2019.
The Ministry of Natural Resources clarification came on the heels of a recent article which quoted Chartered Accountant and Attorney at Law, Christopher Ram, questioning the role that the Ministry plays in the oil and gas sector.
Ram noted that the government had made it clear that all matters relating to oil will be handled by the Department of Energy under the Ministry of the Presidency. However, the Natural Resource's Ministry released an advertisement in its name inviting firms and persons to bid for the work to audit the pre-contract bill that ExxonMobil handed to Government.
Ram questioned, “Oh, and how come the Ministry of Natural Resources is still engaged in petroleum matters? Perhaps that Ministry has not received their copy of the Official Gazette which has removed any responsibility of that Ministry for petroleum operations, transferring them to the Minister of State Mr. Joseph Harmon.”
Yesterday, the Natural Resource Ministry reiterated that all petroleum matters are now under the Department of Energy (DoE), Ministry of the Presidency.
The Ministry then noted that after negotiations by the Ministry of Finance, a World Bank loan for Guyana's Oil and Gas Capacity Building Project was finalized. “This loan came into being earlier this year, before the establishment of the Department of Energy.
Additionally, since the Ministry of Natural Resources held the oil and gas portfolio at the time, it was designated as the focal point for the loan and for the Project Implementation Unit (PIU). It was after the formation of the DoE and discussions with the quintet Ministers and Dr. Mark Bynoe, that it was decided that until budget 2019, MNR would remain as the accounting agency only for the procurement aspects and disbursement of funds.”
The Ministry continued, “Finally, for further clarification, it is pertinent to note that all decisions are made by the DoE and the MNR implements them as instructed. This system functions as a bridging mechanism until the DoE becomes formally established as a budget agency in the 2019 budget which will come in a few months' time.”
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kaieteurnewsonline.com 17 11 2018
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