Jul 02, 2018 News
Finance Minister, Winston Jordan believes that the Green State Development Strategy offers a unique opportunity for Heads of Budget Agencies and Permanent Secretaries to transform their respective sectors and the country as a whole, along a path of green economy principles.
On this note, Jordan made a recent call to all financial officers to ensure that their budget submissions demonstrate green initiatives within the public sector, as well as support engagements with the private sector to boost the realization of a green Guyana.
Pointing to an in-house example, the Finance Minister said, “Increasingly, we have been issuing e-copies of circulars, invitations and notifications from the Ministry of Finance, in our efforts to reduce the use of paper. We have changed our lighting fixtures to LED and, this year, the Ministry of Finance will be sending e-Christmas cards.”
Jordan continued, “We urge other agencies to jump on this bandwagon, in the process reducing cost and improving our green efforts, conscious of our environmental footprint. This is a very small, low hanging fruit readily available to be picked. I anticipate that this would be the start of much more that will be done.”
The economist added, “I would expect, for example, that the Ministry of Business will consider funding start-ups for small businesses to support green initiatives; that our buildings would be incorporating building codes so that support structures that use less energy can be utilized; that we will employ sustainable agro processing practices, and that greater use of management information systems will be made to reduce travel costs and paperwork to name only a few.”
The Finance Minister also expressed hope that the multi-stakeholder expert groups that have met to develop the Green State Development Strategy would have incorporated novel and innovative solutions to the challenges that exist within the various sectors. He commented that the Strategy should provide a menu of solutions that take account of the peculiarities of Guyana’s environment.
The Framework of the Guyana Green State Development Strategy (GSDS) and Financing Mechanisms was prepared by the Ministry of the Presidency with the technical and financial support of UN Environment, in close coordination with the UN Country Team, and based on an initial stakeholder consultation.
The Strategy is expected to guide Guyana’s economic and socio-cultural development over the next 15 years. It is expected to lay the Coalition Government’s principle foundations for inclusive, green economic and social growth, provide a roadmap for achieving sustainable development goals and related targets, and outline a long-term vision for a prosperous and equitable future.
The objective of the strategy is to reorient and diversify Guyana’s economy, reducing reliance on traditional sectors and opening up new sustainable income and investment opportunities in higher value adding and higher growth sectors. Importantly, the present document is the proposed “Framework” for Guyana´s Green State Development Strategy (GSDS) providing guidance on the prioritized areas to be developed in the strategy.
It does not give detail for the GSDS, but rather, lays out the elements to be examined and consulted upon during the course of the GSDS’ development (April to December 2017).The Framework shares the same spirit of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, serving as a tripod platform for economic, social and environmental safeguards.
These safeguards, during the development of the GSDS, are to ensure a sustainable and fair transition to inclusive green growth and a better quality of life for all Guyanese. Furthermore, seven ‘central themes’ are identified with considerable potential to contribute to the transition to a Green State. These are: Green and Inclusive Structural Transformation, i.e., diversifying the economic base, accessing new markets and creating decent jobs for all; the sustainable management of natural resources and expansion of environmental services; Human development and well-being ; Governance and Institutional pillars and International Cooperation, Trade and Investment.
Drawing from an analysis of the local context and existing policies and targets, the Framework proposes specific strategic areas within each theme on which the GSDS should focus. In particular, it acknowledges the risks and benefits in each of these areas for national prosperity, identification of achievable targets and concrete actions as well as a clear roadmap to achieving required change. This Framework also suggests as well, the identification of financial mechanisms to support the implementation of the strategy.
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