POISED for massive transformational development and modernisation, Guyana’s potential as a global powerhouse has not evaded the attention of the international community.
As a matter of fact, President Dr. Irfaan Ali said that, based on the feedback received from the ongoing 76th United Nations’ General Assembly, being held in the United States, Guyana’s profile has undoubtedly “risen tremendously.”
“There’s a great interest from private entities, major CEOs [Chief Executive Officers] and other countries on what is happening in Guyana,” Dr. Ali related in an update on Guyana’s participation at the General Assembly.
The Head of State, who is representing Guyana for the first time at the iconic UN General Assembly, said that, from all indications, increased interest in Guyana, also coincides with increased expectations.
“More is expected of us globally on issues of climate change, energy security, renewable energy; these are all issues that the world is looking for us to provide leadership [on],” Dr. Ali said in his update.
He indicated, too, that Guyana’s delegation at the high-level UN forum is also speaking on matters relating to democracy and the rule of law.
However, over the past few days, President Ali said that his team would have had many engagements, which centered mostly on addressing and advancing Guyana’s developmental priorities; addressing opportunities for investment in the country; strengthening bilateral relations with other countries; opening up new avenues and areas for the development of the country’s human resource capacity; as well as unlocking new areas for financing.
President Ali said the forum provided the opportunity for Guyana to recommit to a number of international goals, including a world that is free from terrorism and intolerance.
“It was very important for Guyana to be part of that, especially given the fact that we are a diverse community; a land of many different ethnicities, and we present an opportunity of building a model for the rest of the world,” Dr. Ali posited.
In providing a breakdown of his engagements, President Ali said that he was able to meet with a number of Guyana’s international partners, including the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) the Organisation of American States (OAS), as well as the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), among others.
In relation to the OIC, Dr. Ali said that the engagement allowed Guyana to outline its long-term priorities.
“The OIC was very responsive, and they are going to work on an aggressive front, not only with the Islamic Development Bank, but by looking at other opportunities within member states of the OIC where Guyana can collaborate,” Dr. Ali said.
In addition to a number of organisations, the Guyanese Head of State also hosted one-on-one engagements with a number of other world leaders, including Barbados’ Mia Motley on matters relating to coordinated strategies and efforts to tackle climate change, climate financing, and the protection of the environment.
“These are important areas for CARICOM [Caribbean Community],” Dr. Ali reminded.
In addition to his regional counterpart, Dr. Ali and his team also engaged the President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on a number of bilateral topics.
“As you know, they have experience in the oil and gas sector, so we spoke about training of Guyanese, we spoke about technology transfer, we spoke about best practices, and we spoke about sharing of best practices, and we spoke about sharing of experiences,” President Ali related.
He also pointed to the fact that in October, a high-level delegation from Guyana will also be travelling to Ghana to “consolidate” areas of collaboration.
In his meeting with the President of the IDB, Mauricio Claver-Carone, Dr. Ali said that Guyana’s portfolio was examined, and discussions centered on the country’s priorities going forward, as well as the reduction of bureaucratic hurdles.
Dr. Ali also had separate engagements with President of the Republic of Austria, Alexander Van der Bellen, who signalled the country’s intention to assist in building a maternal and children’s hospital.
Dr. Ali said that the country also spoke of its private sector, and potential collaboration with Guyana’s business community.
President Ali is expected to deliver his very first address to the massive world forum before it concludes on Monday.