Op-Ed: Prioritizing a Sovereign Wealth Fund – Preparing for prosperity now

By United States Ambassador

Perry L. Holloway

As Guyana welcomed hundreds of delegates to attend its most recent oil and gas conference in February, the world saw a nation poised to be transformed.  I am heartened to see that Guyana has now stepped fully into the limelight as one of the most important developing energy markets in the world.  For the first time in its history, the Land of Many Waters is closer to seeing its potential realized.  To echo the words of Minister of Natural Resources Raphael Trotman:  Guyana’s time is now.

In spite of the often exaggerated gloom and doom pronouncements in the papers, Guyana is poised to be a very rich country for this region with considerable revenue streams in the future.  The development model Guyana now chooses will need to be a decision the people of Guyana make together through a process of public consultations and legislative debate.  I want to emphasize that, as Guyana considers its future, it will not be enough simply to have a “rainy day fund” or even an investment fund, but to institute a revenue and investment framework that protects and effectively leverages wealth to transform the nation.  As the development of a long-term vision for a green, sustainable economy continues, I hope conversations will continue to prioritize implementation of a strong comprehensive sovereign wealth fund bill, in the broadest sense, that is transparent, independent, inviolable, and non-partisan. ….