“Improved internet access to positively affect Guyana’s GDP” – Min. Hughes

– two major projects to begin early January 2019

– remote hinterland communities are expected to benefit

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, November 29, 2018

Residents in remote hinterland communities are expected to benefit greatly from improved and increased internet access and telecommunications services.

Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes.

According to Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes, who appeared on “Budget in Focus” on the National Communications Network (NCN) on Thursday night.

The two projects; a $3.5Billion ($US17M) Guyana REDD+ Investment Fund (GRIF) venture and a $7.7Billion (US$37M) project funded by Export-Import Bank of China (EXIM Bank) are to come on stream in 2019.

The GRIF project will begin in January 2019, while the other venture will be carried out during the next 18 months.

Under the GRIF project, there will be a focus on solar panels and training in basic computer usage. Creation of more community ICT hubs is also on the cards.

Minister Hughes says the China EXIM Bank project will see the roll out a national broadband project which will greatly improve service delivery. This undertaking has a duration of five years and will see the upgrade of the e-Government network to enable equitable delivery of services in the areas of business, education, health, security, government administration and citizenship and immigration.

The Public Telecommunications Minister was also pleased to announce that the government has introduced Computer Coding and Programming, Robotics, Animation to the nation’s youth with the launch of several STEM clubs and the distribution of robot kits and installing coding software at libraries with the relevant infrastructure to begin their “Reading & Robotics” programmes.

She was also lauded Finance Minister, Winston Jordan, for especially considering persons with disabilities in the national budget.

“Tax concessions for the purchase of private vehicles specially equipped for persons with disabilities and tax rebates on smart cell phones with apps and accessibility features for persons with visual or hearing challenges are great,” Minster Hughes noted.

Felecia Valenzuela.

Image: Department of Public Information.