GMSA to partner with gov’t to ensure SMEs receive the necessary support in a rapidly expanding economy

The Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA) plans to work closely with the government to ensure that Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) expand to meet the demands of Guyana’s growing economy.

During a recent interview with the Department of Public Information, President of the association, Ramsay Ali noted that with the growing demand for locally produced products, the establishment of manufacturing facilities is necessary, and since the larger companies can do this for themselves, the SME’s will need the support.

“We are going to be talking to the government on this, we have actually created a matrix to engage government, and different ministries, where we think that there can be some more key infrastructure development…places, where SMEs can have their products produced in a complex, an idea of a complex where you can have light manufacturing being done, and the government, can build these facilities out, and they can get their returns back,” the GMSA president said.

“Today it’s not so much about markets for their products anymore, the markets are there, they are opening up, it’s for them to get capacity in quality control, in packaging so they can compete in the first world,” he added.

Ramsay Ali, President of the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association

The GMSA currently has close to 300 members and will soon be celebrating its 60th Anniversary. Ali said the association has acquired land to build its new headquarters on the East Coast of Demerara.

“We will be building our own space, we will do it properly, you can have small incubators to have small exhibitions, and really do it properly…that’s one of the major plans we have for the GMSA, it’s to own our own property.

“Business Service Organisations like the GMSA, we have got to ensure that our members, especially the small and medium-sized companies do not get left behind, that’s our job, we have got to lobby to ensure that whatever is needed to get them to a place, that’s our job,” he stated.

But, while the association expands and helps its members to do so, Ali reiterated that engagement with government will be a key aspect. This, he noted, will not be a challenge as government has always been open to dialogue.

Some locally produced items on display at Uncapped Marketplace

“You can’t go to government with begging bowls, you have to go to government with plans, sound developed plans, research, data and you have to present your case,” the GMSA president added.

The President Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali-led government since assuming office on August 2, 2020, has implemented policies and programmes, including incentives to create an enabling environment for private sector growth in all sectors.

The administration has affirmed, on many occasions, its commitment to working with private sector organisations to ensure that SMEs benefit from the plethora of business opportunities that are available.