Month: July 2018

30 Jul
By: Tanika Jones 0

Ministry of Finance kicks off Health Week

To view the complete album of this event visit here.

To view more galleries, visit our Flickr account at https://www.flickr.com/financegy/

 

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28 Jul
By: Tanika Jones 0

Ministry of Finance responds to Stabroek News article on vacancies

Dear Editor,

The Ministry notes your article “Finance seeks new Chief Planning Officer, Deputy Finance Secretary after resignations” (SN 2018-07-28) and wishes to provide some context to the subject. We are concerned that the personal matters of former employees of the Ministry have been included in the article seemingly without their consultation.

As a result, please note the following:

  1. Former Deputy Finance Secretary, Louise Bouyea opted not to have her contract renewed through a direct request to the Minister of Finance. We thank her for her service to the Ministry and the country.
  2. Former Chief Executive Officer of the National Procurement and Tender Administration Board Donald DeClou’s contract was not renewed. Among other considerations for the non-renewal of his contract was the fact that he had attained the age of retirement both the Public sector age of 55 and what obtained for workers of the former State Planning Secretariat, age 60.We thank him for his service to the Ministry and the country.
  3. Former Chief Planning Officer, Dr. Nelson Modeste resigned in June of this year. Similarly, we thank him for his service.
  4. The policy of the Ministry under the stewardship of Hon. Winston Jordan is that employees who reach the age of retirement are not kept on unless they bring some special skill that is critical to the work of the Ministry, or, where suitable replacement cannot be found within the Ministry. We see this as part of giving younger civil servants the opportunities to build careers with us. It is also the case that in many other countries, individuals start a second career after they have retired. Guyanese retirees should begin to plan accordingly so that they can continue to be employed once they can parlay their skills to other areas. We do not view the public service as a rest home. This will be counterproductive to the vision that this government has for its Public Service.
  5. As with any dynamic organisation, the loss of staff is inevitable. The competence and efficiency of our middle and senior employees are well known, but alas! They are often poached by local and international agencies including sister Ministries. We accept this reality and remain proud of the work ethic and the level of skills acquired by employees of the Ministry. Since 2015, many of our middle and senior employees whose progress was stymied previously for frivolous reasons have been sent for training both locally and overseas, and received scholarships to Universities abroad. The Ministry is investing in employees who by both their achievements and commitment to their duties show that they are keen to contribute to the development of Guyana. This, despite the ever present challenge of losing them to other employers.

The Ministry of Finance believes that it is especially important that the skills employed can meet the new demands of the services to be provided by Government Ministries and Agencies. The advent of oil production in 2020 will test the ability and capacity of almost all government departments. We are keenly aware of the unique challenges the Ministry of Finance will face, and we are making important and necessary changes to build both the capacity of our ministry and to identify individuals with the requisite skills. Therefore, we see the current changes as very positive and part of our plan to create a dynamic, responsive ministry for the exciting transformation of our economy and country.

Yours sincerely

Wanita Huburn
PRO
Ministry of Finance

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27 Jul
22 Jul
By: Tanika Jones 0

Ministry of Finance Responds to New York Times Article

Dear Editor,

We note with disappointment the article in the New York Times by Clifford Krauss entitled “The $20 Billion Question.” We do not wish to address the laughably simplistic and selective description of our country as a land where children go to school in canoes, the lack of historical context and the author’s deficit of understanding and sensitivity towards Guyana; nor his blanket claim that “the civil service is corrupt,” which is an insult to the majority of hardworking and honest public servants.

We refer instead to his assertion that “foreign bank developers have told the government that legislation to create a sovereign wealth fund…lacks sufficient regulatory controls to avert corruption” and that “The legislation is in limbo.”
This is not the case.

The Ministry of Finance and the government are fully aware of the dangers surrounding resource-rich countries. We have extensively researched the issues of the pre-source curse – where unrealistic expectations ahead of oil production result in demands for higher wages and government spending – and the other two pitfalls – the resource curse and Dutch Disease.
That is why in crafting the National Resource Fund Act (NRFA) we have asked for advice from several international institutions, including the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the Commonwealth Secretariat.

The proposed legislation specifically addresses two main issues: the stability of the economy to absorb increased government spending and economic activity; and the balance between spending on critical development projects and the long term goal of saving for future generations. This is laid out in a Green Paper which will be presented to the National Assembly.

The NRFA, which will be laid in Parliament before the end of the year as indicated in Budget 2018, is the culmination of many lessons learnt around the world by resource-rich countries over the past 100 years. Crucially it directly addresses the transparent handling of, and accounting for, the oil-related funds from depositing in the NRF to their spending which can only be done via the Annual Budget approved by the National Assembly. The fund itself is to be managed by the Bank of Guyana and overseen by a committee that encompasses several independent interest groups including a representative nominated by the Leader of the Opposition. Quarterly reports on its activity will be presented to Parliament. We are confident that the NRFA will fully address these legitimate concerns.

The overriding impression of the article is that the government and the country are hapless, and unable to deal with the new oil sector. We acknowledge there are serious human skills deficits, but the government is proceeding carefully and methodically towards First Oil. The National Resource Fund will be in place before 2020.

Despite the article’s narrative of a “Poor man wins the lottery; disaster ensues,” it also draws attention to some of Guyana’s most pressing challenges and raises the question of how we as Guyanese see ourselves and our country. It also calls to mind two quotes by the Nigerian novelist and short story writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie; “Show a people as one thing, as only one thing, over and over again and that is what they become” and “The single story creates stereotype and the problem with stereotype is not that they are untrue but that they are incomplete, they make one story become the only story.”

It is time that as Guyanese, we reject the single story being told about us, no matter who tells that story. We must look towards the future with hope in our heritage, in the legacies of our ancestors and in the path that is being crafted for us now. I urge Mr Krauss to take a closer look at our country, its proud and resourceful people and our resilience in the face of the odds.

Sincerely,
Wanita Huburn
PRO
Ministry of Finance

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16 Jul
By: Tanika Jones 0

Minister Jordan opens Ann’s Grove Early Childhood Development Centre

View more images of this visit on our Flickr gallery found here.

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16 Jul
By: Tanika Jones 0

Finance Minister visits Ithaca

View more images of this visit on our Flickr gallery found here.

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