Gov’t advancing Guyana’s economic diplomacy agenda
-to expand missions in Middle East, Ghana
Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Hon. Hugh Todd says Budget 2021 was carefully crafted to advance Guyana’s economic diplomacy agenda.
Of the Ministry’s proposed over $6 billion budget, $3.9 billion will go towards the strengthening and establishment of overseas missions to boost foreign direct investment.
The Minister said the possibility for capital investment in Guyana is endless. This, he said, was discovered with the establishment of a mission in Western Asia.
“We are going to focus on the expansion of our diplomatic representation, we are going as far as the Middle East. We found that our presence in Kuwait has been beneficial and we are now expanding to Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
There is a lot of private capital in that Region, which would help us in capital injection in terms of foreign direct investment as well as public-private partnerships and we are looking to tap into that Region through our foreign relations, which would drive that process for economic cooperation and integration,” he said.
Minister Todd said while money would be committed to establish and maintain the missions, support will be provided by the Qataris and the Emirates.
Last November, President Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali held discussions with His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Dalmook Juma Al Maktoum of the UAE, during his visit to Guyana. The discussions surrounded investment opportunities across all the major sectors here, with oil and gas, infrastructure and agriculture taking centre stage.
The Foreign Minister also said the Government is seeking to establish its presence in Ghana.
“We are also exploring the option of a mission in Ghana. So, we are now looking at an international model and the benefits that can be derived from our presence on the continent,” he said.
Minister Todd also relayed that resources would be committed to traditional partners and strengthening relations. He noted that agreements have already been signed surrounding security and economic cooperation.
Meanwhile, the Foreign Affairs Minister said he has already received a visit from his Brazilian counterpart and will soon engage those from Canada and the European Union.
“Our regional and hemispheric integration is a priority as well. Resources will be committed to strengthening our integration efforts beginning with CSME. We are going to establish a CSME unit headed by an ambassador.”
He said Guyana has taken back the helm of the agricultural agenda, which was abandoned by the previous administration, and aims to push the issues of regional food security and nutrition.