Guyana is regaining its position on the international stage – President Ali tells Guyanese business community in NY
– Says his Government sees the diaspora as part of the local content
His Excellency Dr. Irfaan Ali said that Guyana is regaining its “position and credentials” on the global platform in the areas of climate change and agriculture.
The President, who was in New York last week for the 76th United Nations General Assembly, made the comments on Friday, while engaging numerous members of the diaspora’s business community at the Hilton JFK Hotel in Queens.
“The fact is, the direction that our country is heading, and the positioning of our country requires that we now play a deeper, more meaningful role on the global stage.”
President Ali stated that over the past five years, Guyana had lost its position on climate change and in agriculture within the region. He said that the focus is to not only regain that position of influence but to enhance it.
“We lost our credentials and the positioning of Guyana on the international stage. We lost our positioning on climate change. So, we’re doing a lot of work in firstly regaining our position. We have accomplished so much in gaining back our credentials and leadership capability in climate change.”
He elaborated on the success of the Government in attracting investments and gaining the international community’s interest and pointed to several bilateral talks with a number of nations last week, including Barbados, the Maldives, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Ghana, Kenya, Kosovo, Austria and many countries in Latin America.
President Ali further noted that Guyana has taken the Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) pathway to ensure sustainable development.
“Our credentials on climate change will improve; it will not decrease. It will improve because we’re also investing in renewable energy. There is investment in alternative technology; we are responding, investing in new areas of economic development, and importantly food security.”
Looking forward, the President noted that the Government is paying attention to Global policies on fossil fuel, alternative energy and the types of resources that will be needed to transform the economy and the society to meet the future requirements by 2050.
PART OF THE LOCAL CONTENT
The Head of State said that the local content legislation that is being developed will not differentiate between persons living in Guyana and the diaspora.
“We are working to create opportunities, and in a national positioning, which is where the citizens and the diaspora come in, you come in at national position because we see you as part of the local content…When that registration comes out, you are an important part of the embodiment of that legislation.”
He also explained that the Government, in preparation for the economic boom, is working from two tracks, a bottom’s up approach and working from the top to increase investment opportunities.
“We have to fix the basic things, such as social services while at the same time invest in creating the transformative agenda; building infrastructure and creating the opportunities for the growth of the private sector.”
He appealed to the diaspora to remain optimistic and to look for opportunities to invest in Guyana’s expansion plan.
“As far as possible, Guyanese must be part and will be part of the development process.”
The President also said that there are enormous opportunities in Guyana in the areas of industrial development, manufacturing, energy, agriculture, and agro-processing. He reiterated the advantages of coming together and forming consortiums to bolster economic prospects.
TRAINING OF GUYANESE
Meanwhile, the Government has begun to create a conducive environment for business development and is investing heavily in the training of Guyanese.
“We are going to pay to train Guyanese to certify themselves in specialised welding.” President Ali also explained that his Government would ensure that systems are in place to help agro-processing plants reach international standards. He further encouraged the diaspora’s business community to follow Guyana’s development closely and to put their energies towards the opportunities that will come. “We are open, and we are ready to work with you. Knock on the door, come forward. The opportunities are there, and we want you to be part of it,” the President added.