The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will be seeking to enhance its bilateral cooperation and relationships, with South American nations, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carl Greenidge stated recently.
The Minister said as part of this effort, travel will be better facilitated between Guyana and its South American counterparts. The Foreign Affairs Minister pointed out that this is very important if trade and investment, are to be enhanced.
He said, “This is something that we are seeking. So you’ve had visa waiver arrangements for persons travelling and I have seen in some of the comments, ‘why do you want to bother with visa facilitation arrangements with this or that Latin American country? I don’t want to go there; my friends don’t want to go there’. That may well be true but it isn’t germane.”
Greenidge reiterated that his Ministry’s responsibility is to facilitate Guyana’s development. This country, he said, is small, relative to many others, hence if this nation attempted to chart its own way, it would not get very far. He added, “We have somehow to transform ourselves from a tiny state. Even land size wise we are very small, very small. We need to be larger and part of that process of enlarging ourselves has to do with economic integration. We have at one stage done it in relation to Caricom. That is a process that has not gone as far as we would like to. Guyana wants to be at the center of that enlargement.”
The Minister explained that part of that expansion has to do with ensuring that Guyana cooperate and integrate with Latin America, South America and Central America. The visa waivers and other arrangements, Minister Greenidge noted, are needed to attract potential investors to Guyana, “Those entrepreneurs and businessmen with experience and skills in the technological frontiers …to visit where necessary, and making an assessment about our capacity to receive investors, and their resources and ensure that they get a fair return to their investment, even as they undertake work in areas that are critical to our future development.”