President Declares Dec 20th National Petroleum Day and Says ‘Guyana has Become a Petroleum-producing State’
GEORGETOWN, Guyana, CMC – Guyana has begun commercial exploration from the Liza field offshore Guyana with President David Granger declaring December 20th as National Petroleum Day.
In a radio and television broadcast on Friday night, Granger said he had been “advised that petroleum production is about to commence – three months ahead of the original schedule,” adding, “Guyana has become a petroleum-producing state”.
He said in proclaiming National Petroleum Day, it is hoped it would serve as a reminder of the duty to protect Guyana’s patrimony and to ensure the sustainable management of finite hydrocarbon resources.
“Petroleum production will be a transformative process in the country’s economic development. The petroleum sector will stimulate increased employment and expand services,” he told the nation urging collaboration in building a prosperous Guyana.
Granger said the government will unveil a ‘Decade of Development, 2020-2029’ aimed at ensuring that petroleum resources will be utilized to provide the ‘good life’ for all.
“The ‘Decade’ is a 10-year plan to intensify development and improve citizens’ quality of life. Every Guyanese will benefit from petroleum production. No one will be left behind. Your government has taken steps to safeguard the national interest”,” Granger said.
He assured that any withdrawals from the fund will “will follow a balanced approach, prioritising investment in public education, public health, public infrastructure, public security, social protection and other social services and will support private sector development.”
He reminded citizens have been taking steps to safeguard the national interest, first with the establishment of the Department of Energy to manage the country’s hydrocarbon resources and build the institutional, legislative and regulatory capacity to manage this sector effectively.
He said the National Assembly this year passed the Natural Resource Fund Act, which will ensure Guyanese benefit from the oil resource wealth while ensuring these revenues are managed in a transparent and accountable manner.
He said “withdrawals from the ‘Fund’ will follow a balanced approach, prioritising investment in public education, public health, public infrastructure, public security, social protection and other social services and will support private sector development”.
Granger stated that petroleum production has brought the prospects of a higher quality of life closer to households and neighbourhoods across Guyana and it is a momentous event.
“Guyana’s future is brighter with the beginning of ‘first oil’. The ‘good life’ for everyone beckons. Let us work together to build a happy and prosperous country for the present and future generations”, the President said.
From May 2015 to September 2019 there have been 16 oil finds in Guyana’s waters. Of these 14 are by the US-based oil giant ExxonMobil with the other two by UK-based oil company, Tullow Oil.
While oil production began Friday, the first million barrels — ExxonMobil’s first entitlement — are not expected to be shipped to one of its refineries until January 2020.
Guyana’s first three million barrels are also expected to be shipped off to an international oil refinery of its choice. ExxonMobil and Guyana’s entitlements are to be refined to remove all contaminants and set a standard that will attract the best Brent crude price.
Commercial oil production from the Liza 1 field is pegged at 120,000 barrels per day.