President David Granger: Ministers of the Government, His Excellency Luis Alberto Martino, Ambassador of the Argentine Republic to the Cooperative Republic of Guyana; Members of the National Assembly; Members of the Diplomatic Corps; Military Attachés, Distinguished Guests, citizens of Argentina; Members of the Media; Ladies and Gentlemen.

The Cooperative Republic of Guyana extends hearty congratulations to the Government and People of the Argentine Republic on this happy occasion- the 201st Anniversary of its Declaration of Independence.

Excellency, we recall the historic Congress of San Miguel De Tucumán of the 9th July, 1816, when delegates declared the Independence of what was then called the United Provinces of South America.

Excellency, the Argentine Republic which emerged from that historic Congress has become, more than two centuries later, one of the largest economies in South America; a testament to the economic strides which that nation has made since independence.

Guyana and Argentina have maintained close and cordial ties since the establishment of formal diplomatic relations nearly forty-five years ago; on the 6th of October 1972.

Guyana expresses its appreciation for the support provided by Argentina in arts, in defence, in education, in health, in sports and other fields. We look forward to continued cooperation with Argentina.

Guyana and Argentina continue to collaborate within regional institutions such as the Union of South American States (UNASUR), the Common Market of the South (MERCOSUR) and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), and the Organisation of American States (OAS).

These fora provide us with the opportunity to work with other like-minded states of the South to address issues of economic and social development of our peoples and to promote the principles of peace, respect for democracy and the protection of human rights.

Excellency, Guyana and Argentina can look forward to working together to preserving the southern hemisphere as a zone of peace. Guyana and Argentina in this regard share the common values of respect for each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty; of non-interference in the internal affairs of states; of respect for treaties and international law and the maintenance of peace and security.

Guyana, a small developing state on the northern shoulder of South America, is located in the heart of the Guiana Shield; a vast area of 2.5 million square kilometres and one of the few remaining regions with the highest biodiversity on earth.

Guyana is in transition to becoming a ‘green state’. Guyana’s green development pathway will place emphasis on conservation of its biodiversity; on the protection of the environment and on the promotion of eco-tourism and the provision of renewable energy.

Argentina, a large state in the South of 2.7 million square kilometres, bigger than the Guiana Shield, is also in transition towards greater use of renewable energy.

Guyana welcomes cooperation with Argentina in the generation of renewable energy, the exploitation of its forests in a sustainable manner and the restoration of lands damaged by irresponsible farming, logging and mining.

Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, I therefore invite you to join me in proposing a toast to the continued good health of His Excellency, President Mauricio Macri; to the prosperity of the people of Argentina and to the strengthening of the relations between Guyana and Argentina.

I thank you.

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