GNSC sees major increase in importation of stones, cement last year

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

The Guyana National Shipping Corporation

Last year, the Guyana National Shipping Corporation (GNSC) recorded a 152% increase in profitability and a 9.5% increase in revenue.

This was revealed by Public Works Minister Juan Edghill during a recent press conference on Monday where he noted that this was the first year that the GNSC’s operations fell under the purview of his Ministry.

In the past, it was the Ministry of Finance that had oversight of the GNSC.

“The Guyana National Shipping Corporation increased its revenue by 9.5% in 2021 and it has become more profitable, they are reporting 152% in profitability over what was budgeted for 2021,” Edghill explained.

Owing to this success was the fact that the GNSC has seen major increases in the imports and exports of cargo and containers.

“We’ve seen a general increase in cargo by 55.1% and that’s a good thing, more cargo is coming to Guyana…cement accounted for about 29%,” the Minister explained.

“Aggregates increased by 686%, that’s the importation of stone and that speaks about the kind of development and what is happening as a country…” he added.

There was also a significant increase in exports. According to the Minister, “more containers pass through the National Shipping, there was increase in containers to export by 32%.”

“The handling of rice for export increased by 54%,” Edghill posited.

Moreover, the Public Works Minister said the GNSC has also seen a decrease in their expenses.

“They have been able, through good management to reduce expenses. Expenses went down by 6.3% versus what was budgeted…so, the Guyana National Shipping Corporation is in a very good place,” Minister Edghill added.

In 2020, Edghill had told the newly installed Board of Directors of the GNSC to focus on profitability and stop subsidising the private sector.

“Guyana National Shipping Corporation must not be subsidising anybody in the private sector […] by giving them meagre rents. They are charging competitive rates for the services that they are giving. In that way they are making larger profits because we are doing business as a government entity and had they gone to a private sector man to rent the same space, they would have had to pay a better price,” Minister Edghill had said.

The Minister had also reminded them about the entity’s Articles of Incorporation, which gives it authority to engage with other parties. He suggested that the GNSC considers decentralising the location of its head office as the current location on the shipping block takes way some prime space that could be used for storage.

Minister Edghill had said modernisation is especially important with the emerging petroleum sector.

“These facilities are some of the most sought-after facilities in the country right now. Once you’re near the water with sheds and storage, everybody in the oil and gas industry will be seeking out partnerships and engagements,” he had noted.

The Board is chaired by Attorney-at-law, Mr. Euclin Gomes.  The other members are GNSC Managing Director, Mr. Andrew Astwood; engineers Mr. Oswald Chisholm, Mr. Dimitri Alli and Mr. Ramkumar Gopaul; Community activist, Mr. Desmond Morian; Mr. Rajendra Paul and Mr. Miguel Choo-Kang, and Advisor to the Public Works Minister on Maritime Affairs, Ms. Claudette Rogers.