T&T investments in Guyana growing – Pres Ali

…says Govt looking for ways to further integrate economies

With Trinidadian investments in Guyana steadily growing, President Dr Irfaan Ali has indicated that they are actively looking for innovative ways in which to further integrate the two economies.
During a recent interview with Trinidadian news agency CNC3, Ali was asked about the growing ties between Guyana and Trinidad. In particular, reference was made to the regional ferry service being developed, which will include both countries, as well as Barbados in its first phase.
Ali made it clear that alongside Trinidadian Prime Minister, Dr Keith Rowley, they are actively working to grow ties between the two countries. According to him, there is much potential for Guyana and Trinidad to extend their competitiveness beyond the Caribbean region.
“I want to say to the people of the region, Trinidad and Tobago and Guyana, that Prime Minister Rowley and I, we have been working very strongly together on building the connectivity between the two countries. But also building out a platform through which Trinidad and Guyana can operate in integrating a lot of what we’re doing.”
“We have to find innovative ways in which we will further integrate the different sectors, to position the two economies to service the demand and increase our competitiveness beyond the region. Because there’s tremendous potential both for Guyana and Trinidad beyond the region.”
In fact, the president noted that there is already a lot of investments from Trinidad and Tobago, occurring in Guyana. The Head of State was also optimistic that these investments would continue to grow.
“A lot of investments and private sector companies and individuals from Trinidad are investing heavily in Guyana. They’re getting a lot of opportunities here. They’re part of the growth and development of our country.”
“And I think without exception, they can speak about the way in which we have integrated and the way in which we have welcomed investment, we look forward and we know that this is going to expand,” he further said.
Since January, it was reported that the Trinidad and Tobago Cabinet had approved the use of that country’s Galleons Passage vessel to operate the regional ferry service. And on January 5, the Guyanese Leader had disclosed that Guyana, T&T and Barbados have formed a joint company that would work towards the introduction of a ferry system for passenger and cargo between the three countries.
Only last month, CariCargo Incorporated, the company that will be operating the ferry, was officially incorporated in Guyana. The vessel is expected to play a pivotal role in transporting not only CARICOM nationals, but also goods, particularly agriculture produce.
Back in May 2022, Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago had embarked on setting up a ferry service between the two countries to transport people and cargo. During a joint press conference between President Ali and Prime Minister Rowley in Georgetown, the two nations had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for co-operation in a number of areas.
“As we speak to you now, we are already exploring the possibility of having a cargo-plus-ferry facility as an experiment between Guyana and Trinidad, moving people and goods and services… We cannot address any issues unless we create a platform, the vehicle that will allow us to do that, and this MoU does that,” President Ali had noted.
Regional leaders have also long recognized that affordable intra-regional travel remains one of the major bugbears to trade and movement of skilled labour within the Caribbean. Consequently, they have been working on a regional ferry network.
In 2022, the Caribbean Community (Caricom) had approached the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for funding to establish this intra-regional ferry service. At the time, the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) was tasked with ironing out a proposed roadmap study for a fast ferry service with an initial focus on trade between Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada, and Barbados. (g3)