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Guyana to Host European Union Trade Mission

Guyana will host a three-day trade mission from the European Union (EU) later this month, the EU Ambassador René van Nes has announced.

He said that the November 20 to 22 event will be the first for the trade delegation to Guyana and that the focus will be on new investments and partnerships.

“The focus of that mission will be to go into a number of sectors, to explore areas of development, to look for partners, to look for investment opportunities,” he said, adding “we hope that will lead to a number of concrete relations (and) investment opportunities that will materialise in the period after that”.

Among the companies expected to exhibit their products are Siemens, one of the largest electrical companies in the world and Nokia. Smaller, more specialised companies will be in attendance.

The EU diplomat said there is representation from the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Finland, Spain, Italy, Austria, Sweden, Ireland and France. He stated that the EU Office here has been working alongside private sector representative bodies here to guarantee that local private sector players can meet with those from the trade mission.

The diplomat said the development in Guyana is only now getting underway and there is much interest in the “phenomenal” growth trajectory. He also acknowledged that the Schengen visa issue, which has been a topic of much discussion locally, is a hindrance for a deepening relation between the two sides.

“It is important to go ahead even if we don’t have the solution for the Schengen visa,” he said, adding “I wish I could do more. It is an important issue and I hope we can soon find a solution.”

Improved connectivity between the two sides are viewed as important but for Guyanese require the Schengen visa that is issued in Suriname.

In June, President Dr Irfaan Ali said that at least five EU countries have agreed to sponsor Guyana’s bid for Schengen visa-free travel. He, however, noted that Guyana’s passport must be improved and upgraded with biometrics.

Source: Jamaica Observer