Georgetown, Guyana – (June 8, 2017) President David Granger continues to pursue investment and development assistance for Guyana at the European Development Days (EDD) meetings, currently ongoing in Brussels, Belgium. The President held meetings with high-level officials of the European Union (EU) during which he sold Guyana as a green state in-the-making and one that was ripe for investment and development.
Earlier today, the President met with Mr. Pim Van Ballekom, the Vice President of the European Investment Bank, during which he urged the Bank to examine investment opportunities in Guyana, especially in the areas of infrastructure and renewable energy, two strategic pillars of Guyana’s ‘green’ development strategy.
Mr. Ballekom said that the Bank was encouraged by its visit to Guyana last year and was prepared to consider viable projects. During that visit, the Bank had discussed with government and the private sector, its possible involvement in projects in Guyana. The European Investment Bank, which is keen on re-engaging with Guyana, is owned by the member states of the EU and is one of the world’s largest multilateral banks.
Following that meeting, the President held a bilateral engagement with Mr. Neven Mimica, the EU’s Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development. He reiterated his commitment to a renewed partnership with Europe and said that for the Caribbean, the negotiations leading to a new partnership with Europe were important.
The President noted that the middle income countries of the Caribbean still face a number of challenges, including that of climate change and environmental hazard. The post-Cotonou agreement, he urged, must consider how best to create the conditions that would stem the haemorrhaging of resources and talent from the Region. He also extended an invitation to the EU Commissioner to visit Guyana.
The President also met with Mr. Louis Michel, the EU Co-Chair and President of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, who congratulated him on his impressive address to the High-Level Panel on the future of ACP-EU relations.
The two men discussed the way forward for this partnership and Mr. Michel said he looked forward to President Granger’s involvement in the ongoing reflection by the EU and the ACP on a post-2020 agreement. President Granger, in response, assured the Commissioner that Guyana and the Caribbean would participate fully in the debate on the shape of future ACP-EU relations.