– another 75 million Euros to make sugar competitive
The European Union (EU) is gearing to commence its 10th European Development Fund (EDF) with Guyana valued at 51 million Euros. It is ready, too, to plug another 75 million Euros into the drive to make the local sugar industry competitive.
European Union Ambassador to Guyana, Geert Heikens, made the announcement Friday evening at celebrations to mark Europe Day.
Heikens told a gathering that included the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance, that while the EU’s cooperation programme with Guyana continues, there is room for improvement.
He cited the “unfortunate” fact that Guyana lost out on 14 million Euros that was part of the EU’s support to help the sugar industry become competition after a change in trading arrangements with Europe saw the loss of preferential market access.
He said that in the first round of funding, 90 million Euros, was made available and now another 75 million has been made available.
“I sincerely hope these amounts will end up in (the) treasury…and we will use it to make the Guyana sugar industry a modern and competitive industry,” Heikens said in addressing Finance Minister Ashni Singh.
In remarks at the ceremony, Prime Minister Samuel Hinds thanked Europe for its assistance, noting that the shift in trading arrangements has put emphasis on making the sugar industry competitive.
The Prime Minister said, “With the modernisation of the Skeldon factory, Guyana has witnessed progress in the direction of its competitive efforts.”
In 2010, the European Commission disbursed more than 21 million Euros in development assistance to Guyana, and part of those funds went to supporting the establishment of the Enmore Packaging Plant which would be officially opened tomorrow.
Other funds went to support the country’s sea defence and low income housing programmes.
Heikens said that this year marks the transition from the Ninth EDF to the 10th EDF. He said the latest round of funds would be concentrating on general budget support and sector budget support to the sea defence sector.
The Prime Minister praised the long standing relationship with Europe which spans 40 years.
With another regional and general elections in Guyana on the horizon, the European Union Ambassador said the Union will not be sending monitors to the elections, based upon the experience of the last elections.
“It is a clear sign of our trust,” Heinkens said.
The Prime Minister also expressed confidence in the conduct of this year’s elections.
“The government envisages that the regional and general elections will be peaceful, fair and transparent consistent with climate of the 2006 polls.”
Sep 15, 2019Briton John stormed to victory in the feature 35-lap race of the Triskits Biscuit, Midwest tea biscuit cycle event which was contested yesterday at inner circuit of the National Park. John took an...
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