Category: Media

18 Apr
By: Tanika Jones 0

Minister of Finance attends the First Conference of the Belt and Road Initiative Tax Administration Cooperation Forum BRITACOF2019

Minister of Finance, Hon. Winston Jordan attends the First Conference of the Belt and Road Initiative Tax Administration Cooperation Forum BRITACOF2019, in Wuzhen, China which takes place from April 18-20, 2019.

Guyana/China signed an MOU on July 27,2018 for the Belt and Road Initiative. It is the first South American country to do so.

This year Guyana and China will celebrate 47 years of diplomatic relations.

 

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12 Apr
By: Tanika Jones 1

Guyana signs loan agreement with the World Bank to Build Capacity in the Oil and Gas Sector

Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan today (April 11, 2019) participated in a signing ceremony with Ms. Tahseen Khan, World Bank Country Director for the Caribbean, for a loan agreement which will build human resource capacity, and strengthen institutional frameworks in the Oil and Gas Sector.

Minister Jordan noted the timely nature of the loan agreement as it sought to provide much needed technical assistance to the emerging Oil and Gas Sector.

Ms. Khan said that the loan agreement will aid in building the capacity of key institutions, such as the Department of Energy, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Ministry of Finance, for prudent management of the oil revenues.

The Hon. Minister was accompanied by Dr. Gobind Ganga, Governor, Bank of Guyana, Dr. Riyad Insanally, Guyana’s Ambassador to USA and Mr. Jason Fields from the Embassy of Guyana.

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08 Apr
By: Tanika Jones 2

Requirements for Pensions & Gratuities – FAQs

1. How long is a Government pensioner’s life certificate valid?
A life certificate is valid for three (3) months. It is renewable on or before the last working day of the month in which it expires.

2. Who is authorised to endorse a life certificate?
Life Certificates for pensioners residing in Guyana must be certified by a Notary Public, Commissioner of Oaths, Head of Department, Justice of the Peace, Minister of Religion or the Manager of a Bank.
For pensioners living abroad, life certificates must be certified by a Notary Public or the Guyana Consulate of the country in which the pensioner resides.

Important: The certifying officer must affix an official stamp on the life certificate.

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Requirements for Pensions & Gratuities
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06 Apr
By: Tanika Jones 0

44th Annual Meeting of the Islamic Bank Group – Statement by the Honorable Winston Jordan, Minister of Finance and Governor for Guyana

On the occasion of the 44th Annual Meeting of the Islamic Bank Group, in this historic city of Marrakesh, in the Kingdom of Morocco, it is my honour and privilege to convey, on behalf of the President and People of the Cooperative Republic Guyana, our most sincere congratulations to the leadership and staff of the IsDB Group for another successful year, and warmest greetings and thanks to my fellow governors, and the Board of Directors for their work and support to the Cooperative Republic of Guyana.

Excellencies, as you will recall, Guyana became a member of the OIC in 1998 and the IsDB in 2016.  Since then, the support Guyana has received from the IsDB has been unique for its approach to programme formulation and project approval.  In 2018, three operations were approved, enabling Guyana to benefit from a grant of ID200,000 for the upgrade and modernization of a geriatric facility; a US$20 mn installment sale operation to expand and upgrade the electricity transmission and distribution system, thereby leading to the improvement in the quality and reliability of the energy supply received by customers; and a reverse linkage programme (funded by Malaysia (US$0.3mn), the IsDB (US$0.28 mn) and Guyana (a matching amount)), to make the rice industry more resilient, productive and competitive.

Additionally, in 2018, we received a programming mission to begin preparation for several new projects.  These operations are an appropriate response to the current challenges faced by Guyana, which are rooted in insufficient national resources and a diminishing pool of multilateral and bilateral support to provide the social and economic infrastructure necessary for giving “the good life” to all Guyanese.  

Mr. President, in the period since our last Annual Meeting, some “inconvenient truths” of globalization’s free trade agreements became more evident: the developed economies have championed trade without attention to people; and trade arrangements have been extended into national borders, with the consequential reshaping of domestic regulations and the appropriation of indigenous knowledge for profit.  Now, the world begins to reap the whirlwind of a global marketplace that by-passes distributional justice with disruptions in geopolitical stability and defaults on agreements to govern the global commons. We see fragmentation, instead of collaboration and unity, and the rise of a chauvinistic brand of nationalism.

As we look towards the immediate and medium terms, Excellencies, it is clear that business as usual will not suffice.  We must applaud the vision of the President, who is steering the Islamic Bank Group on a path that recognizes the importance of the environment, and to building partnerships and south-south relations towards the realization of economies that are resilient, that champion trade with the awareness that people are central to all our policies, programmes and actions; and that address labour market failures by targeting job creation and global value chains.  These programmes and financial instruments of the IsDB will not deepen societal divisions nor undermine domestic social bargains, in the way that implementing current WTO and banking rules seem to be doing.   But, even as academic and political thought seems to target only trading arrangements for criticism, we have to recognize that technology and demands for highly skilled workers – with its attendant downside of the brain drain – are even greater disrupters.

We have to find ways for our countries to leapfrog into the 21st century and beyond with clear-sighted and even prescient recognition of the necessity of adjusting to emerging global imperatives and changes.  Media is replete with many examples of these, a few of which are: the ongoing threat to European Integration (BREXIT); financial sector and Basel II reforms and the trend towards derisking, which places international transactions, including remittances to small countries, at extreme risk while increasing the cost for correspondent banking services; and the withdrawal of large countries from the global systems and structures, such as the essential climate change pact (denying us a path to development via industrialization) and safeguarding the blue economy.

Excellencies, Guyana will be looking towards its development partners, including the IsDB, to build on our regional comparative advantage in natural resource endowment including pristine forests, abundant fresh water, large arable agricultural lands and a wide variety of flora, fauna and mineral resources.  Our strategic geo-physical and geo-political location within Latin America and the Caribbean offers a convenient gateway for public and private sector partners to collaborate and invest in Guyana, to expand their market opportunities and access scarce resources.

To realise this potential, it is imperative for us to develop: (i) climate resilient infrastructure, and food and energy security; (ii) an empowered and skilled labor force; and (iii) a capacity for entrepreneurship, innovation and creativity.

Excellences, in all of these areas I am pleased to say that the IsDB has commenced working with Guyana to develop an appropriate development agenda as well as a plan of action and implementation. To this end, Guyana has placed for consideration the following investment initiatives with the IsDB:

  • The development and construction of three (3) mini- hydropower systems and road links in our vast hinterland communities.
  • The construction of several potable water and sanitation systems.
  • A reverse linkage programme in halal ecosystems. and
  • A reverse linkage programme in technical and vocational training with emphasis on addressing the critical needs of our emerging oil and gas sector.

In the pipeline are opportunities for a waqf investment programme to support our elder care initiatives; highway construction to open thousands of hectares of agricultural land while linking communities and markets; and marine port development to improve shipping and competitiveness.

Guyana looks to the esteemed President of this august institution and his skilled and hard-working staff to support our ambitious programmes, and we look to your respected Excellencies to formulate the policies to support the work of the IsDB among its member countries.  There are thousands of years of experience and tested technologies that exist in this region, from which we hope to benefit.

Your Excellencies, Guyana is open for business and we invite you and the IsDB to partner with us in making our exciting development prospects a reality.

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03 Apr
By: Tanika Jones 2

Guyana’s Oil & Gas sector benefits from US$20M loan from World Bank

Guyana has secured a US$20 million loan to support capacity building for Petroleum Resources Governance and Management from the World Bank. The loan was approved on Friday March 29, 2019.

This Project will enhance the transparency, governance, legal, regulatory and institutional frameworks for the oil and gas sector in Guyana.

The Government of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana (GCRG), in recognition of the risks associated with being a new oil and gas (O&G) producer, has worked to negotiate this loan with the World Bank to address governance and management risks from inadequate policy, legal and regulatory frameworks and institutional capacity needed to maximize the benefits from expected oil revenues; and to minimize downside risks associated with oil revenues and growth of the sector.

As such, the components of this loan reflect the reality that the O&G sector will affect multiple layers of the economy; impact the livelihoods of present and future generations; the environment and local communities; and that if poorly managed, the development of O&G resources can be economically and socially costly for the country.  

Additionally, there are environmental and social risks – usually infrequent but with high impact – associated with O&G production that require effective and constant monitoring, as well as significant investment in environmental damage prevention and response capacity, among others.

The GCRG is keen to invest in strengthening its institutions and building capacity to manage O&G resources. Therefore, the Project envisages that Guyana’s legal and regulatory frameworks for the O&G sector will be reviewed and updated with a view to maximizing benefits to the country and affected communities; managing the technical, environmental, social, and financial risks linked to the sector; and building capacity to engage effectively with investors.  Institutional capacity to oversee and manage the O&G sector in the various relevant government ministries, commissions and other departments will be created using consultants, initially, but with a view to ensuring local personnel are trained to replace these technical advisers over time.

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01 Apr
By: Tanika Jones 0

Kuwait Investment Authority, State of Kuwait Cancels US$50,739,255.67 of Guyana’s Debt

Georgetown: A Bilateral Debt Settlement Agreement was signed by Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan, on March 18, 2019, with the State of Kuwait, through the Kuwait Investment Authority, to cancel US$50,739,255.67 of Guyana’s debt to that country.

This debt cancellation will reduce Guyana’s external debt and allow the country to expand its development agenda, as funds saved under this agreement would be allocated to social projects within the context of the National Budget.

The agreement, which came after an ardent negotiation process, paves the way for greater co-operation and the strengthening of cordial ties between the two countries.

Commenting on the agreement, Minister Jordan said that it is the result of renewed efforts by his Ministry to engage Guyana’s non-Paris club bilateral creditors in negotiating debt relief that is acceptable and sustainable.

The remaining amount of US$26,853,585.23 will be settled through a combination of cash payments, to be made over nine (9) years, and a debt swap arrangement, which will be worked out in due course.

Guyana’s debt to Kuwait originated from a Loan Deposit, contracted in 1975, from the Central Bank of Kuwait for Kuwaiti Dinars 3.0 million (US$10.3 million at that time), for balance of payments support to the Bank of Guyana. The debt accumulated massive arrears over the past four (4) decades, at high market interest rates. As at December 31, 2017, the debt to Kuwait had grown to US$77,592,840.90, comprising principal arrears of US$9,940,500 and interest arrears of US$67,652,340.90.  

Since assuming office in 2015, the Finance Minister has pursued debt relief from other bilateral non-Paris club creditors with whom Guyana’s debts are in arrears.

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