GEORGETOWN, Guyana, May 22, 2022 - Guyana's President Irfaan Ali and the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), which provides for economic cooperation in eight areas to include tourism, financial services, agriculture, energy and air transportation.
In his remarks, the Guyanese Head of State Irfaan Ali said that given the new dynamics surrounding food security and transportation, deliberations in this regard are of “immense importance” and can have a very positive impact on the agriculture sector.
In the area of energy, President Ali added that the two sides will also examine how they can further strengthen cooperation in ensuring energy security and that the assets in all countries are optimally utilised for the economic and social benefits of their people.
Importantly, he expressed optimism that the new approach and the enhanced cooperation will go a long way to “short-circuit the bureaucracy”.
The President also pointed to the benefits to the tourism and financial sectors of both countries.
“I am very pleased that we were able to conclude this MoU and we will be working diligently with the technical team from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and relevant sectors, in accelerating low-hanging fruits; things that can be achieved in the short to medium term and the long-term initiatives so that we can move this forward.”
In his remarks, Prime Minister Browne commended President Ali for his exemplary leadership in the region in bringing together all stakeholders to address the critical issue of food security.
He reminded that Guyana and Antigua have been at the forefront of the integration movement and have enjoyed close bilateral relationships over the years.
Prime Minister Browne said the new cooperation agreement which the two countries are pursuing will create even more opportunities including increased investments and trade.
The agreement, he added, will help to strengthen the countries’ bilateral relationship and enhance their collective contribution to the integration movement.
Prime Minister Browne was among nine CARICOM Heads of Government who gathered in Guyana for the inaugural Agri Investment Forum and Expo aimed at reducing the amount of agricultural products imported into the CARICOM region. The aim is to reduce 25% percewnt of importys within another three years.