If Guyana is to experience sustained growth leading to the development of a worldclass energy industry that benefits the local economy, it is critical that a robust safety culture is embraced now. Imperative would be the adoption of safety systems and procedures that international operators consider basic to a safe and productive operation. Adherence to such systems would also give locally owned and operated contractors greater access to work in the sector, which will enhance local content development. 

It is with this in mind that the Guyana Safety Forum was conceptualised. The forum was held on December 6th, 2018 at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre, Georgetown and was organised by the Energy Chamber of Trinidad and Tobago (Energy Chamber) with a view to promoting knowledge transfer. Speakers at the forum shared information on how contractors can implement a strong safety programme in a new hydrocarbon environment so that they are able to access jobs with multinationals. 

One of the major messages of the forum was that any emerging hydrocarbon industry should encourage the development of a group of well-qualified, experienced and ethical local health, safety and security (HSE) professionals which would ensure that high standards of safety at all levels of operations is not just given lip service. 

Guyana has received significant international attention because of the potential of its energy sector. Exxon, in 2015, first confirmed an enormous discovery offshore Guyana. Exxon has continued its drilling success, and to date, has 10 confirmed discoveries offshore Guyana. The summation of these finds has the potential to produce 750,000 barrels of oil per day by 2025.