The 2016 Petroleum Agreement has been a source of grief, anger, disbelief and shock to the average Guyanese whether living inside or outside Guyana. The insulting 2% royalty, the contrived US$18 million for legal fees masked as a signing bonus, and the Government paying the oil companies’ corporation tax liability have evoked extremely strong emotions. It cannot be surprising therefore that some commentators find the Agreement so lopsided that they wonder publicly whether the Government will get anything out of the Contract, as least for some time to come.
In my opinion that extreme level of pessimism is not only not justified but is actually counterproductive.
On the other side of the coin are those like Dr. Henry Jeffrey and Professor Clive Thomas who advocate for direct, unconditional cash payments. In contrast with the pessimists, Thomas boldly mentioned the figure of US$5,000 per household per year which would cost over US$1 billion per year. Later on, Mr. Tacuma Ogunseye moderated Thomas’ generous call by placing a ceiling of 2% to 5% of the gross revenue of Government to meet Thomas’ call…..