Gov’t, Private Sector teaming up to ‘break down hurdles’ to CSME -President Ali

The Government and Private Sector will be joining forces to break down hurdles that prevent Guyanese products from entering the CARICOM Single Market Economy (CSME). This was disclosed by His Excellency Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, today, in his keynote addresses at the launch of the Canada-Guyana Chamber of Commerce.

President Ali said for years, Guyana has been trying to get its products into the CARICOM market with little success.

“This has to change. We have facilitated investment from other CARICOM countries without any hurdle. Our Private Sector never came out and complained. Our Private Sector never said to the Government scale back. The fact of the matter is we have not been treated the same way. It has to change,” President Ali said.

The President noted that there must be a balanced playing field for investors after highlighting that it took Guyana years to get ice-cream into the CARICOM market.

“I have asked the Foreign Ministry today to bring a list of all the hurdles we have in every single market in CARICOM and we are going to put together a joint team of the Private Sector and the Government to break down those hurdles, to get our products in,” Dr. Ali said.

The Head of State emphasised that “Guyana is a safe place to invest. Guyana would facilitate investment. We are not going to put hurdles in your way. We are going to facilitate investment but at the same time, your Government has a responsibility to ensure that you do not have hurdles elsewhere doing business and this is what we have to work on.”

President Ali urged the Private Sector to be bold in its negotiations with CARICOM in his address at the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association’s (GMSA) 25th Annual Awards Ceremony held on Thursday evening.

“Your engagement with CARICOM must be bold. It is time we break down the barriers to trade. It is time we stake our place, whilst we have the capacity and will to invest in food security. The Private Sector needs to push hard on all the barriers that prevent our goods and services from entering a free market, an open market, a unified market in CARICOM,” the President had said.

CARICOM’s official website states that the CSME seeks to implement provisions for the removal of trade and professional restrictions. According to website, the provisions facilitate the right to establishing businesses, to provide regional services, the free movement of capital and the coordination of economic policies.

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