Government committed to ensuring highly competitive, world class, diversified economy – says Finance Minister

-congratulates Commission on 30 th AGM

Georgetown, Ministry of Finance, May 12, 2022: “My assurance to you today, on behalf of His Excellency the President is that you have in this Government, a Government that believes strongly, unshakably, unflinchingly and indeed, unapologetically the role of the Private Sector in the future of Guyana, and you have in this Government a partner committed to ensuring that a rapidly growing and a highly competitive, world class, diversified economy in Guyana.”

These were the words of Senior Finance Minister Dr. Ashni Singh today as he delivered the feature address on behalf of President Irfaan Ali at the opening ceremony for the PSC’s Thirtieth Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at the Marriott Hotel, Kingston. The ceremony was attended by members of the business community, the Diplomatic Corps, members of the main Opposition A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance for Change (APNU/AFC) and the Judiciary.

Minister Singh reiterated that Government sees the private sector as a highly valued and cherished partner in National development as he recognized the role of founding members of the Commission, some of whom were also present at the ceremony. The Minister also acknowledged the role of the PSC in the restoration of democracy in Guyana in 1992 and for their stance during the 2020 General Elections. On this note, Dr. Singh also expressed gratitude to the members of the Diplomatic Corps during that period of turmoil when they assisted in defending Guyana’s. democracy.

During his address to attendees, the Finance Minister reiterated the important role the private sector will play in the provision of jobs as well as in assisting in Government’s non-oil economic diversification policy (including in agriculture for food security across the Caribbean), to allow for a more resilient and stronger economy. He also disclosed that for the first time in 54 years, Guyana will once again be exporting manganese as was done in the past.

“Food security across the Caribbean presents a valuable business opportunity for Guyana…. we will see the level of emphasis being placed on non-oil extractive sectors such as gold and other minerals. I want to recognize the fact that this year, indeed this month and I believe this week Guyana will resume exports of manganese for the first time in 54 years. Right now, 16 vessels are being loaded in the North West of Guyana with Guyana’s first shipment of manganese in 54 years, and right multiple international companies are actively engaged at varying stages of development of world class large-scale gold mining operations in at least three very promising developments across Guyana,” the Senior Finance Minister said.

Meanwhile, Outgoing Chairman of the Private Sector Commission Paul Cheong said he was pleased to see that many of the measures proposed by the PSC during consultations on Budget 2022 were included in the Budget as he outlined several achievements of the PSC during his tenure as Chairman. He also welcomed the Women’s Chamber of Commerce as he noted that the PSC will be placing additional focus on the inclusion of more women in its fold.

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