Chinese Ambassador supports “One Guyana” initiative
– Guyana and China celebrate 50 years of diplomatic ties
Expressing support for the “One Guyana” initiative, the Chinese Embassy here is hoping to raise more awareness of its culture, especially as the two countries celebrate 50 years of diplomatic ties.
The 50-year relationship between Guyana and China has tremendously benefitted both countries. Another major milestone is the 170th anniversary of the arrival of the first Chinese people to Guyana, which will be celebrated next year.
In this regard, the Chinese Ambassador to Guyana Guo Haiyan during a recent interview with Guyana times, indicated that it is important that the Chinese culture be more integrated into the national culture.
“Next year we will celebrate the arrival of Chinese to Guyana for 170 years, so Chinese is one of the six people but now there is this idea of one Guyana, Chinese Guyanese are part of Guyanese,” she said.
A descendant from the original batch of Chinese who came to Guyana, Melanie McTurk had expressed in an interview with a local media outfit that the Chinese culture and contributions to Guyana are often overlooked.
She had expressed “We are only recognised when it comes to a festival or holiday. I would like to see it recognised as a genuine part of our culture and heritage.”
With Guyana and China celebrating this year, 50 years of diplomatic relations, the Chinese Ambassador explained that there are a lot of activities lined up – which will help to bring more attention to the connections between the two nations.
“Besides the park, there are also some other projects under discussion, for example sports facilities, a working team will come to the visibility study and together with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation we have planned a series of activities to commemorate the 50th anniversary, for example, we have friendship table tennis tournament has been held February and there will be a Chinese film festival, an online culture performance, online photo exhibition, and the embassy will donate a pavilion to commemorate our friendship to the Guyanese side,” she stated.
The Chinese Government earlier this year had announced upgrades for the Joe Viera Park, which according to the ambassador is not only in light of the 50-year relationship, but has been on their agenda for some time now.
“Although COVID-19 is still not over yet, two working teams has come, they have finished their concept note and they’re busy with the concept design, and now they’re busy with the detailed design and we hope that construction will commence as soon as possible this year.”
Ambassador Haiyan reminded that Guyana was one the first countries in the Caribbean to approach China for diplomatic relations and throughout their relationship, the Chinese Government has continued to urge investors to seek opportunities in Guyana.
The 50-year fruitful relationship has seen Guyana benefitting from a number of grants, funds and loans from China and also led to Guyana being one of the first countries to receive China’s COVID-19 vaccines during the pandemic period.
She said that the two countries complement each other’s economy, in terms of these investment opportunities.
“I believe China and Guyana are opportunists for each other because the two economies are highly complementary.”
“We regard Guyana as a very important partner in this region and we are happy to see Guyana is playing a more and more important role in development and so we ready to work with Guyana and for better cooperation,” she added.