To make Guyana more business-friendly, Finance Minister Winston Jordan said that Government has a number of plans in the mainstream, one of which includes support for private businesses by cutting bureaucratic red tape and making official procedures easier to navigate.
Jordan said that Government intends to seek financing to implement the Single Window Automated Processing System (SWAPS). When established, he said that the SWAPS will link licencing bodies to the Customs and Trade Administration to facilitate the sharing of information and to enhance the efficiency with which trade transactions are carried out.
The Finance Minister said that these improved procedures will not only reduce the amount of time that private businesses spend mired in paperwork, but also increase government accountability, reduce corruption, and make data and information more accessible.
He noted that the Ministry of Business is also establishing a Help Desk for businesses, which will act as a single point of contact for information and advice for businesses, traders, and the Government.
While consumers and large businesses can access loans, Jordan said that small businesses commonly face a financing gap. However, this will not continue for much longer, as Jordan said that for 2016, Government intends to further reduce bottlenecks in accessing finance through the implementation of the Micro and Small Enterprise Development (MSED) initiative.
He said that to build generic- and sector-specific skills, training opportunities for entrepreneurs will be expanded to cover all ten administrative regions, with special emphasis on business operators in the mining and forestry sectors. This year, Jordan said that 400 entrepreneurs will be targeted to benefit from training.
As a small economy, the Finance Minister said that everyone must work to enhance the country’s brand and visibility as an investment destination. The Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest) is also working feverishly in this regard, said Jordan.
He said that the entity is working to improve agency websites and develop partnerships with other investment promotion agencies worldwide. In 2016, the Finance Minister said that GO-Invest will increase its engagements with the Diaspora to re-invest at home.
Jordan said that publicizing Guyana’s unique advantages will attract new and diverse industries.
He noted that in 2015, GO-Invest facilitated 148 projects across seven economic sectors – agriculture, light manufacturing, tourism, services, forestry, information and communication technology and energy. He said that the potential value of investment facilitated amounted to $89.3 billion, while the total potential jobs numbered about 8,400.
Jordan said that GO-Invest also facilitated 44 Foreign Direct Investments. In 2016, the agency hopes to facilitate 160 new investments worth a total of $11 billion.
The Finance Minister said that another challenge that investors in Guyana face is finding adequate facilities with full utility services. He noted however that the Granger administration intends to address this problem by upgrading and building industrial estates at Belvedere and Lethem which will facilitate business ventures in such areas as light manufacturing, woodworking and fabrication, creating over 3,000 new jobs.
Nov 14, 2018The 2018 Seaboard Marine Caribbean Motor Racing Championships (CMRC) came to a close officially Monday evening when the awards ceremony concluded at Guyana’s Ramada Princess Hotel at Providence,...
I walk my dog twice daily. In the evenings I would take her next door to the AFC head office. The occupants of the house... more
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