Guyana

General

Guyana became a member of CARICOM on 1st August 1973. For details on the economy, political structure and demographics see the World Fact Book - Guyana.

Public Procurement Laws

Guyana is one of three CARICOM Member States which undertook significant public sector procurement reform. Jamaica and Belize are the other two member states. In 2000, the Guyana Constitution was amended to provide for a public sector procurement regime for the first time and to provide for the creation of a Public Procurement Commission as an oversight body. The Constitution empowers the commission to monitor and review all public procurement systems to ensure that they are in accordance with the law. It is to be made up of five members, who are supposed to have “expertise and experience” in procurement, legal, financial and administrative matters. Among the commission’s primary functions is monitoring the performance of procurement bodies for adherence to regulations and efficiency in procuring goods and services and the execution of works. It specifically has oversight over the procedures of ministerial, regional and national procurement entities as well as those of project execution units. The commission is also empowered to investigate complaints from suppliers, contractors and public entities and cases of irregularities and mismanagement, with the power to propose remedial action in all instances. However, to date the Commission's members have not yet been appointed. The setting up of the commission and the Public Procurement Appellate Tribunal is seen as integral since there is currently no recourse for contractors who feel wronged by the selection process. Consequent upon the constitutional amendment the Procurement Act 2002 was enacted and then repealed just one year later and superseded by the Procurement Act 2003. The 2003 Act was enacted, as part of an institutional strengthening process, together with the Fiscal Management and Accountability Act 2003 and the Audit Act 2004. In 2008 Guyana reported to the MESICIC that “the implementation of the Procurement Act, the Fiscal Management and Accountability Act and the Audit Act coupled with the introduction and establishment of the expanded committee system in Parliament allowing for scrutiny and oversight of every sphere of government, through an empowered the Public Accounts Committee and the four sectoral committees (economics, social services, natural resources and foreign relations), has improved fiduciary oversight.”

On 20th October 2008 Guyana signed the CARIFORUM EC - EPA which contains public procurement conditions for the first time in a multi-lateral trade agreement in the ACP.  The conditions require transparency in all Government Procurement above a threshold of approximately 164,000 Euros. 

Anti-Corruption Laws

The Procurement Act 2003 and Regulations 2003 (in particular Sections 55 and 60 which refers to conflict of interest and offences), the Fiscal Management and Accountability Act 2003 (sections 10, 11, 49 and 85) hold the Minister and all public servants accountable even after the person/s cease/s to hold office), and the Audit Act 2004 (section 6 refers to conflict of interest in relation to the person who holds the office of the Auditor General). Furthermore, the Auditor General must declare to the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee all pecuniary interests and whether they are conflict of interest issues or not. Guyana also has the Integrity Commission Act 1997 Chap.19:12 and in 2009 Guyana enacted the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Act.

Guyana has signed and ratified the Inter-American Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters as well as the UN Convention on Corruption and the CARICOM Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty on Serious Criminal Matters

Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2009 Ranking measures the perceived level of public-sector corruption in 180 countries and territories around the world. The CPI is a "survey of surveys", based on 13 different expert and business surveys. Guyana was ranked 126th in the CPI 2009 with a score of 2.6.

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