• DeepOcean Secures Major Subsea Contract with ExxonMobil in #Guyana

    The multi-purpose support vessel (MPSV) Siem Day.
    Photo courtesy DeepOcean

    Norway-based DeepOcean, a leading provider of ocean services, has secured a major contract from ExxonMobil Guyana for subsea construction and inspection, maintenance, and repair (IMR) services off the coast of Guyana, South America.

    The contract marks DeepOcean’s first substantial contract with ExxonMobil in the Americas and its debut in the burgeoning Guyana offshore market.
    DeepOcean will utilize the Siem Day multi-purpose support vessel (MPSV), which is outfitted with a 250-tonne crane and state-of-the-art technology and features that allow for efficient and safe operation even in challenging offshore environments. The vessel’s large deck space, advanced dynamic positioning systems, and dual ROV spreads guarantee superior performance and maximum productivity.

    The #Stabroek_Block is hailed as one of the world’s most promising oil and gas discoveries, with estimated recoverable resources exceeding eight billion oil-equivalent barrels to date.

    pas tout-à-fait sans rapport avec la réactivation des prétentions du #Venezuela sur l’#Esequibo

  • Dutch exhibition offers new insight into Berbice slave uprising

    National archives showcases unique letters sent by the leader of first organised slave revolt.

    The Dutch national archives are showcasing a unique set of letters sent by the leader of the first organised slave revolt on the American continent to a colonial governor, in which the newly free man proposed to share the land.

    The offer from the man known as #Cuffy, from #Kofi – meaning “born on Friday” – is said to provide a new insight into attempts to resist the brutal regimes of the colonial period, often overlooked in histories of enslaved people.

    “We will give Your Excellency half of #Berbice, and all the negroes will retreat high up the rivers, but don’t think they will remain slaves. The negroes that Your Excellency has on his ships – they can remain slaves,” the rebel leader wrote to the local governor, #Wolfert_Simon_van_Hoogenheim.

    Berbice, now part of #Guyana, was a Dutch colony for two centuries, and in 1763 approximately 350 white Europeans were keeping an estimated 4,000 slaves on coffee, cotton and sugar plantations in increasingly barbaric conditions, even by the cruel standards of the time.

    Cuffy had probably been brought there by traffickers after being bought as a child in west Africa. On the morning of 23 February 1763, a group of around 70 men and women on one colonial plantation overpowered their captors and encouraged the neighbouring slaves to join them, leading to a rebellion of about 3,000 people.

    The colonialists fled as the revolt grew but around 40 men and 20 women and children found themselves surrounded by 500 formerly enslaved people after taking refuge in a house on one of the plantations. The roof was set on fire and escapers were shot, according to the writer and historian #Karin_Amatmoekrim.

    #Van_Hoogenheim burned down the colony’s #Fort_Nassau to avoid it being taken into rebel hands, leading Cuffy, who had taken leadership of the rebellion, to appoint himself as the new governor of Berbice.

    But Cuffy informed Van Hoogenheim that he wanted to end the violence, which he said had been provoked by the cruelty of a particular group of plantation owners. It is this correspondence that now features in the Rebellion and Freedom exhibition, albeit only online for now owing to coronavirus regulations.

    “Cuffy, Governor of the Negroes of Berbice, and Captain Akara send greetings and inform Your Excellency that they are not seeking war. But if Your Excellency wants war, the Negroes are willing to do so,” Cuffy wrote. “The Governor of Berbice asks Your Excellency to come and speak to him; Do not be afraid. But if you don’t come, we’ll fight on until there is no Christian left in Berbice.”

    According to Amatmoekrim, there was scepticism among the other newly freed people at this attempt to find terms with the colonialists, apparently in part born out of the distrust felt by some about Cuffy, who was one of the few “house slaves”, working often in close proximity to the plantation owners.

    Van Hoogenheim waited it out as Cuffy was challenged by a new leader, Atta, leading to a showdown between the two camps of supporters. Cuffy lost out and subsequently killed himself.

    A few months later 600 Dutch soldiers docked at Berbice port, leading to the colony’s recapture by the summer of 1764 and savage repercussions. Around 1,800 rebels died, with 24 burned alive, according to Amatmoekrim.

    “The history of the Berbice uprising is important as it shows that our colonial past is laced with histories of revolt and resistance,” she said. Cuffy’s story, among others, she said, highlighted “the kind of heroism that has not easily penetrated the history books: black, enslaved, and fighting to the bitter end for their own freedom.”


    #Pays-Bas #archives #colonialisme #esclavage #colonisation

    ping @cede

  • Le COVRI, think tank vénézuélien, appelle États-Unis et Brésil à la neutralité dans le contentieux territorial avec la Guyana sur territoire de l’#Esequibo.

    Exhortan a EE UU y Brasil a mantener neutralidad en controversia sobre la Guayana Esequiba

    El Consejo Venezolano de Relaciones Internacionales (Covri) exhortó a los gobiernos de Brasil y Estados Unidos “a observar una política de estricta neutralidad en relación a las controversias pendientes respecto a la frontera terrestre y marítima entre Guyana y Venezuela” sobre la Guayana Esequiba.

    • C’est plutôt mal barré, dans la mesure où, lors de la visite qu’il vient d’achever en Guyana, le secrétaire d’état Mike Pompeo a chanté les louanges des entreprises pétrolières états-uniennes et particulièrement d’Exxon-Mobil qui opère dans la zone contestée.

      Mike Pompeo elogió explotación petrolera de Exxon Mobil en aguas del Esequibo y anunció patrullaje marítimo de EEUU | PETROGUIA

      Pompeo: “Hemos visto al Partido Comunista Chino invertir en países, y todo parece genial al principio y luego todo se derrumba” (Foto Departamento de Estado)

      El secretario de Estado de los Estados Unidos, Mike Pompeo, concluyó su visita en Guyana y Suriname donde elogió la actividad que están realizando empresas norteamericanas del sector de los hidrocarburos en esos dos países, a las que llamó “las nuevas naciones petroleras” de América del Sur, marcando diferencia principalmente con respecto a Venezuela. 

      El respaldo de Pompeo se centra principalmente en el trabajo realizado por la estadounidense Exxon Mobil en aguas marítimas que principalmente son extensión del territorio Esequibo y forman parte del reclamo realizado por Venezuela por un área que abarca más de la mitad de lo que actualmente es Guyana pero también una crítica contra las presencia china en esas dos naciones.

    • … et que É.-U. et Guyana vont signer un accord de coopération pour faciliter les patrouilles maritimes dans la région… pour contrôler le trafic de drogue dans cette même région …

      Guyana, US to ink maritime patrol pact – State Dept official - Guyana Times

      US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo

      During a briefing ahead of Pompeo’s arrival today, a Senior US State Department official disclosed on Wednesday that Guyana and the US will exchange diplomatic notes on joint maritime patrols to interdict narcotics.

      In Guyana, for example, we’re going to do an MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) on joint maritime patrols which are getting at interdiction of drugs and drug traffickers that are causing security problems for them,” he stated.
      According to the official, this step would not only provide security for Guyanese, but US citizens as well.

      The signing of this pact for maritime patrol comes on the heels of increasing attacks from Venezuela across the border in riverine areas. Only recently, several officers attached to the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) came under fire while conducting inspection along the Cuyuni River. It is suspected that the shots were fired from the notorious syndicato gang from Venezuela.

      In fact, Regional Commander Dion Moore had explained that such incidents have been occurring for some time now. Fortunately, no one has ever been injured to date.

  • Oil Boom Begins in #Guyana as Exxon Produces First Liza Crude - Bloomberg

    Exxon Mobil Corp. and its partners produced the first commercial crude from Guyana, setting the small South American nation on a path to potentially vast flows of oil revenues.

    Output from the first phase of the offshore Liza field is expected to reach full capacity of 120,000 gross barrels of oil per day in coming months, with the first cargo to be sold within several weeks, the companies said in separate statements late Friday.

    Exxon has a 45% share in the Guyana project, while Hess Corp. has 30% and China’s CNOOC Ltd. 25%. Exxon and Hess also reported Monday a new discovery at their Mako-1 well, which, along with Liza, is located in the #Stabroek_block.

    Guyana President David Granger declared Dec. 20 “National Petroleum Day,” noting that the country has become an oil-producing state three months ahead of schedule. The president hailed a related 10-year government plan to create oil-related jobs and boost the economy.

    Recoverable resources in the Stabroek block are estimated to exceed 6 billion barrels of oil equivalent. A second floating, production, storage and offloading (FPSO) facility, with capacity of as much as 220,000 gross barrels of oil per day, is under construction as part of Liza’s phase 2 development. At least five FPSOs are expected to be producing more than 750,000 gross barrels of oil per day from Stabroek by 2025.

    The amount of oil expected to be produced would mean Guyana, with a population of less than 800,000, may end up producing more crude per person than any other country in the world. But how it benefits from that wealth is still an open question. While the country has established a sovereign wealth fund, it has been slow to develop regulations to govern the sector and there’s no set plan on how the money will be spent.

    Your government will manage petroleum revenues prudently to ensure fiscal discipline, financial sector stability, sustainable levels of public debt and low inflation,” Granger said in a video address to the people of Guyana.

    Guyana will head to the polls in March for a presidential election that pits the incumbent coalition, led by Granger, against the People’s Progressive Party, which held power for 23 years until 2015.

    • Litiges transfrontaliers sur le plateau des Guyanes, enjeux géopolitiques à l’interface des mondes amazoniens et caribéens

      Carte 2 - les litiges du Plateau des Guyanes

      15 Le Venezuela affirme que la frontière « naturelle » avec le Guyana est formée par le fleuve Essequibo, et non par la ligne Schomburgk(^3) (Carte 2), tracée en 1844 et présentée en 1886 par le Royaume-Uni comme la frontière internationale. En 1899, l’arbitrage des Etats-Unis aboutit à des concessions bilatérales permettant une démarcation réalisée en 1905 (Cabrera Sifontes, 1970 ; Paúl, 1983 ; 2005 ; Donavan, 2003, Martínez, 2011), mais aboutissant à la perte pour le Venezuela d’un territoire d’environ 160 000 km², et surtout de plus de 200 kilomètres de côtes ouvertes sur l’Océan Atlantique, ce qui n’allait pas être sans conséquence par la suite du point de vue du droit maritime et de l’exploitation des ressources (Pouyllau, 1982). Le territoire perdu puis revendiqué appartenait à la Capitainerie générale du Venezuela avant l’indépendance de ce pays, le 19 avril 1810, qui fut suivie de modifications issues de traités et rapports d’arbitrages sans vices de forme (Hensel et Tures, 1997 ; Venezuela, 2000).

      (3) Robert Hermann Schomburgk est né à Fribourg (Allemagne), mais a servi la Couronne Britannique comme officier pour fixer ses frontières. La définition des limites internationales avec le Venezuela est connue comme ligne Schomburgk.

      (je reprends le très remarquable article déjà pointé ici (et accessible…) : Litiges transfrontaliers sur le plateau des Guyanes, enjeux géopolitiques à l’interface des mondes amazoniens et caribéen de Gutemberg de Vilhena Silva, Professeur de géographie politique, Département des sciences humaines et sociales de l’Université fédérale d’Amapá (Brésil)

    • ExxonMobil Announces ‘Transformative’ First Oil In Guyana

      UN HEADQUARTERS, NEW YORK, NY, UNITED STATES - 2016/02/19: Guyanese President David Granger speaks with the press at UN Headquarters in New York City.
      Photo by Albin Lohr-Jones/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

      December 20th marks a historic milestone for Guyana, the small South American country that is soon to become the fastest growing economy in the Caribbean. Late in the evening, ExxonMobil and its partners announced that it had produced the first commercial crude from the Liza field, located in Guyana’s offshore Stabroek Block. The output from the first phase is expected to reach capacity of 120,000 gross barrels of oil per day (bdp), utilizing the Liza Destiny floating production storage and offloading (FPSO), and the first cargo is set to be sold within several weeks. Stabroek Block is expected to produce 750,000 bpd by 2025.

      Guyana President David Granger declared December 20 as “National Petroleum Day” and said that the revenues from oil would be “transformative” for the Guyanese economy. The international community agrees – the International Monetary Fund has predicted the country’s GDP could grow 86 percent next year. “That’s 14 times the projected pace of China,” according to Bloomberg. The IMF further projects that the country’s current $4 billion annual gross domestic product will grow to $15 billion by 2024.

      Granger took the occasion to announce the government’s “National Decade of Development” plan, which will prioritize reforming the public education system and providing free schooling for all Guyanese. The “Petroleum production has brought the prospects of a higher quality of life closer to our households and neighbourhoods. It is a momentous event,” Granger said. “Every Guyanese will benefit from petroleum production. No one will be left behind.

      Recent months have seen a flurry of activity as the government takes steps to prepare for the first oil production. As I noted in September, The Ministry of the Presidency’s Department of Energy has been established to manage the country’s resources and build the institutional, legislative and regulatory architecture to manage the sector effectively.

      Head of the Ministry of the Presidency’s Department of Energy Dr. Mark Bynoe cautioned that “Guyana’s future is bright, but we can only secure that future by strengthening legislation, conducting due diligence, emphasizing education, following a balanced development paradigm and utilizing the best skills in the industry through partnerships.

      According to the government, local content policy is in its final stages of being reviewed by experts with the Local Content Unit to be set up by the end of the year. The draft has received mixed reviews, and will likely be a crucial issue in the lead up to Guyana’s next general elections in March 2020. The Guyanese government is also conducting a process to find buyers for the first three cargoes of the oil it is entitled to under the contract with the consortium, which is led by ExxonMobil with Hess Corp and China’s CNOCC.

      But first oil was not all that December had in store for Guyana. Just three days later, ExxonMobil announced that it had made a new oil discovery at the Mako-1 well southeast of the Liza field, marking the 15th discovery on the Stabroek Block. The successful Mako-1 adds to the previously estimated recoverable resource of more than 6 billion oil-equivalent barrels in the Stabroek Block.

      Amid the excitement surrounding the first oil milestone, the discovery at Mako-1 emphasizes the long-term nature of production in Guyana. With discoveries continuing to mount, ExxonMobil and its partners have sought to maintain a steady pace of development and approvals for future phases of production. Liza Phase 2 is already well underway, and the third phase, Payara, is expected for early 2020.

      The 800,000 or so citizens of Guyana are about to experience a very significant change in their standard of living due to the ongoing development of their nation’s offshore mineral resources. The crucial challenge for the government there will come in properly managing the new wealth. Granger’s government has taken several key initial steps towards that goal, and March’s national elections will help determine what that management will look like heading into the future.

  • Rien de tel que de réactiver un bon vieux contentieux territorial (chacun court après l’unité nationale à sa façon…)
    contentieux réactivé en 1962-63 sous la présidence de Rómulo Betancourt, fondateur d’Action démocratique.

    Militares venezolanos exigen a #Guyana retirarse de territorio en disputa


    Funcionarios del Frente Institucional Militar y miembros de la Institución de Estudios Fronterizos de Venezuela enviaron un informe ante «las acciones y actuaciones de la República Cooperativa de Guyana al pretender desconocer la vigencia del Acuerdo de Ginebra.»

    El informe señala que Venezuela nunca reconoció la validez del Laudo Arbitral de París de 1899, «por estar viciado desde su inicio de componendas entre los árbitros del laudo como ha quedado plenamente comprobado», reseñó Infobae.

    Para el grupo de altos oficiales y profesionales en materia fronteriza, «el 26 de mayo de 1966, Gran Bretaña e Irlanda del Norte dieron la independencia a la Colonia Inglesa de Guayana, asumiendo el Acuerdo de Ginebra de 1966, la República Cooperativa de Guyana y la República de Venezuela».

    Además solicitan que Guyana se retire de la tenencia ilegal del territorio #Esequibo y «de las concesiones de explotación por ser riquezas de Venezuela, inalienables e imprescriptibles».

    El FIM considera que el gobierno, la sociedad civil, política y militar «acuerden una alianza patriótica para ejercer por vía jurisdiccional la reivindicación del territorio Esequibo_», declarando ese territorio Estado de la República Bolivariana de Venezuela.

    • Un excellent point en 2017 sur les contentieux sur le plateau des Guyanes.

      Litiges transfrontaliers sur le plateau des Guyanes, enjeux géopolitiques à l’interface des mondes amazoniens et caribéens

      Limites et frontières internationales ont toujours constitué des thèmes importants dans les études géopolitiques. Dans une perspective diplomatique, les frontières terrestres et maritimes sont en interrelation. Ces interrelations compliquent les pourparlers pour déterminer des limites, ce qui est particulièrement net dans le cas des différents pays composant le plateau des Guyanes, une région géomorphologique localisée entre les fleuves Orénoque et Amazone en Amérique du Sud. Cette région contient le plus grand espace forestier tropical continu et intact au monde, mais son sous-sol contient aussi du pétrole, de l’or, des diamants et autres ressources naturelles qui suscitent de nombreuses convoitises et accroissent les difficultés pour résoudre les litiges frontaliers hérités de la colonisation. Le présent article analyse les principaux aspects des conflits maritimes et territoriaux toujours en cours sur le Plateau des Guyanes, sous l’angle de la géohistoire et de la géopolitique. Il examine leurs causes et leurs conséquences. Il en conclut que tous les États de la région, à l’exception du Brésil, sont aux prises avec des litiges territoriaux. L’article souligne également l’importance des intérêts économiques dans la résolution de ces litiges territoriaux, car ces zones contestées, riches en ressources aiguisent l’appétit des multinationales dans le jeu géopolitique régional.


      Cadre conceptuel et géographique : Plateau des Guyanes et notion de « revendication territoriale »
      • Le Plateau des Guyanes
      • Les frontières internationales et leur contestation
      Les revendications continentales
      • Le cas de l’Essequibo
      • Le cas du Triangle de la New River
      • Le cas des affluents de la rivière Lawa
      Les revendications maritimes

      Carte 2 - les litiges du Plateau des Guyanes

    • La Cour internationale de justice est en cours d’examen d’une requête introduite par la Guayana en avril 2018. Le Venezuela a refusé de prendre à l’instance, arguant de l’accord de Genève de 1966 et conteste la recevabilité de la requête.

      Le délai pour la présentation du contre-mémoire par le Venezuela à la Cour à échu hier, 18 avril 2019.

      La Cour doit maintenant statuer sur la recevabilité.

      Sentence arbitrale du 3 octobre 1899 (Guyana c. Venezuela)

  • Exxon Sparks IMF Concern With Weighty Returns in Tiny #Guyana - Bloomberg

    Exxon Mobil Corp. got such a “favorable” deal from Guyana, home to the biggest new deepwater oil play, that the tiny South American country should rewrite its tax laws, the International Monetary Fund said.

    While Guyana should honor the existing deal, future contracts should ensure the state gets a higher portion of crude proceeds, the fund said in a report seen by Bloomberg News. The country, South America’s third poorest with an average per capita income of around $4,000, has little experience of dealing with multinational behemoths such as Exxon.

    Terms of the 2016 contract “are relatively favorable to investors by international standards,” the IMF said in a report prepared for Guyanese officials. “Existing production sharing agreements appear to enjoy royalty rates well below of what is observed internationally.
    Open Oil, a Berlin-based company that advocates contract transparency, also found Guyana’s share of the #Stabroek was low compared with both established and early-stage producing countries. Guyana will receive 52 percent of positive cash flow over the life of Exxon’s initial project, compared with between 63 percent and 72 percent for developments in Liberia, Mauritania, Ghana, Senegal and Papua New Guinea, it said in a March report.

    The Exxon contract, which was published on a government website last year, provides Guyana with a 2 percent royalty on sales and 50 percent of profitable oil, once costs are repaid. Exxon and its partners can only deduct three-quarters of their costs each year, giving the government some cash in the first years of the project.

  • Venezuela propone a Guyana reiniciar contactos diplomáticos

    El gobierno venezolano consideró hoy «inaceptable» recurrir a un «arreglo judicial» en la Corte Internacional de Justicia (CIJ) de La Haya para resolver la disputa fronteriza por la región del Esequibo con Guyana, país que acaba de llevar el caso ante ese tribunal, tal como lo sugirió la ONU.

    «Se ha reiterado al gobierno guyanés que recurrir al arreglo judicial para dirimir la controversia resulta inaceptable, estéril e inaplicable, dado que (...) Venezuela no reconoce como obligatoria la jurisdicción de la CIJ», señala la Cancillería de Venezuela en su página web.

    Este jueves Guyana introdujo ante la CIJ una solicitud para que «se confirme la validez legal y el efecto vinculante del laudo arbitral de 1899 con respecto a la frontera entre Guyana y Venezuela», según un comunicado.

    Venezuela reiteró hoy que este laudo arbitral «sobre la frontera entre Venezuela y la entonces Guayana Británica es nulo e írrito».

    Señala, según el comunicado, que Venezuela "ha informado que objeta expresamente el arreglo judicial como medio de solución (...) ya que violenta el preámbulo del Acuerdo de Ginebra de 1966".

    #Guyana #Essequibo

  • The young #Walter_Rodney

    Seminal is a word frequently used to describe How Europe Underdeveloped Africa, Walter Rodney’s opus that swiftly extended itself far beyond its academic crucible when published in 1972. Not since Frantz Fanon’s Wretched of the Earth had a writer so widely transformed how Africa was seen and researched. Rodney’s gift was his ability to synthesize…

    #CULTURE #MOVIE_NIGHT #Guyana #Jamaica

  • Le Guyana convoité par ses voisins - par Luis Alejandro Avila Gómez

    Le Guyana se trouve au cœur d’une multitude de revendications territoriales et maritimes historiques, lesquelles reprennent de la vigueur après la découverte d’importants gisements d’hydrocarbures au large de ses côtes.

    #Frontières #Venezuela #Guyana #Droit_de_la_mer #Amérique_du_Sud #pétrole #extractivisme #cartographie

    • le différend frontalier, et le conflit autour de la délimitation maritime entre le Venezuela et le Guyana.

      Ce n’est pas précisément dans l’actu, mais c’est un problème important en Amérique du Sud, et surtout un problème qui dure depuis plus d’un siècle et qui n’est toujours pas réglé :

      Le chercheur en géopolitique Luis Alejandro Avila Gómez nous a confié un remarquable projet cartographique, très complet, que nous publions ce matin avec plaisir. Nous publions rarement des cartes qui évoquent avec cette précision les traités, les accords bilatéraux de délimitations avec les coordonnées géographiques, etc. Il est toujours intéressant d’essayer de figurer, comme le fait l’auteur ici, les critères, les arguments sur lesquels les pays se basent pour assoir leur revendications territoriales.