The Government had received nine proposals from interested parties vying to construct a refinery in the Berbice region, of which five were shortlisted.
These proposals are currently being evaluated and the final ranking is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2024.
At the National Budget presentation, it was announced that following this step, the top-ranked contender will undertake an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment at Crab Island, Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) for a facility that can process at least 30,000 bpd.
The investment commitment from these shortlisted firms is expected to exceed US$1 billion.
A Request for Proposals was issued in 2022, for the design, finance, and construction of the refinery at Crab Island.
An oil refinery is an industrial processing plant where crude oil is refined into marketable petroleum products such as gasoline, asphalt, and kerosene. The plan for the refinery’s construction ties into the Government’s vision of promoting value-added production and securing energy security both for Guyana and the Caribbean.
Last year, during a State visit to the Dominican Republic, President Dr Irfaan Ali and Dominican President Luis Abinader had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to address consideration of that country setting up a refinery in Guyana.
However, Vice President Dr Bharrat Jagdeo recently reminded that the Government was simultaneously exploring the possibility of strategic reserves, which may negate the economic viability of an oil refinery.
He contended that the Government is exploring all options to ensure that the investment was one that was economically viable, sustainable, and would bring added benefits to the country.
With the operationalisation of a local oil refinery, Guyana would be able to market crude oil components to various industries for a broad range of purposes, including fuels for transportation, paving roads, and generating electricity and raw materials for chemical manufacturing.