Economic integration important for small state development -Minister Greenidge

DPI, GUYANA, Friday, April 13, 2018

Building a closer relationship with the wider Latin American and Caribbean region is important for Guyana’s economic development Minister of Foreign Affairs Carl Greenidge has reiterated.

Minister Carl Greenidge at the SIRG Meeting which was held during the Summit of the Americas.

“There has been a recognition for quite a while that if we as Guyana, a microstate, are not in a position to fund and develop our human resources we have to do it collectively,” Minister Greenidge told local media on Thursday.

Minister Greenidge is currently in Lima, Peru attending the Summit of the Americas which is being held from April 13-14.

Guyana has long since been working to strengthen its integration within the wider region. There has also been an increased effort under this administration to strengthen its South-South relations.

“Part and parcel of the approach to economic advancement lies in economic integration and integration requires that you try and build not merely a single market, in the context of the whole West Indies, but in the context of the Americas,” Minister Greenidge noted.

President David Granger has maintained that deepening regional integration between Latin America and the Caribbean is vital for the country’s development and security. Minister Greenidge reiterated the role the region can play in resolving issues that threaten a country’s security.

The first meeting at the Ministerial level of the Summit Implementation Review Group (SIRG).

 

“Guyana, at this point in time, also recognises that part of the route available to us, to deal with the problems, territorial problems, for example, lie in coming to a common understanding and having closer and deeper dialogue with all of the region,” Minister Greenidge explained.

Guyana’s territorial integrity has long since been threatened by Venezuela, its neighbour. The border controversy has since been sent to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) by the United Nations Secretary-General for resolution.

Minister Greenidge stressed that “meaningful dialogue” at events such as the Summit of the Americas is important to small states like Guyana.

“It is not sufficient to work with Venezuela or to seek out another ally, as it were, in the region. But to have a dialogue across the region, as a whole, so we can all be clear what are the threats, what are the ambitions, what are the dangers and what are the possible options in terms of solving these problems,” Minister Greenidge said.

The Summit of the Americas is being held at a time when the region is faced with political and other challenges. Minister Greenidge noted that if there is to be a meaningful dialogue among the 20 or so heads of state and government “without compounding those deficiencies”.  The Summit brings together world leaders from North and South America and the Caribbean. This year’s theme is “Democratic Governance against Corruption”.

The world leaders will seek to coordinate concrete action among member states in the fight against corruption which is hindering sustainable development and transnational threats across the Western Hemisphere.

 

By: Tiffny Rhodius

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