Guyana remains a ‘focus country’ for Canada – Court

Canadian High Commissioner Charles Court yesterday said that media reports claiming that the relationship between Guyana and Canada was deteriorating were untrue.

Speaking at the opening of the Canadian Executive Services Organisation (CESO) five-day ‘Knowledge Sharing and Sustainability of Results’ workshop,

Court said Canada had been helping Guyana even before the country gained independence.  “Guyana is one of our focus countries,” the High Commissioner stated. “Canada has been helping Guyana for fifty years, last year.”

He stressed that Guyana will continue to benefit from the country’s international programmes like CESO.

Court lauded CESO’s hard work. CESO is a non-profit development agency founded in 1967 and it transfers the skills of its unpaid Volunteer Advisers to deserving entrepreneurs, small businesses, and social and charitable NGOs and government agencies.

By transferring the skills and experience of Canadian experts, most of whom are retired, CESO improves the ability of people to do their jobs, strengthen their economies and improve the quality of life. CESO Guyana representative, Jocelyn Williams, explained yesterday morning that the retired specialists aid in addressing issues affecting small and medium businesses.

International operations conducted by CESO are funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA). Last March, CIDA officially re-launched the CESO programme in Guyana. CESO has completed 11 assignments in the last year and has identified several partnership collaborations.

The New Guyana Marketing Corporation and Tourism and Hospitality Association of Guyana are among several organizations that have partnered with CESO to aid in executing their activities during the next five years.

Small and medium businesses in which fall under the sectors of tourism and agro-processing, as well as a series of other services will be targeted to receive assistance.

Don Johnston, President of CESO, and Dorothy Nyambi, Vice President of CESO, both spoke of their organization’s dedication to helping Guyana and countries like it.

Meanwhile, the head of the Project Cycles Management Division of the Ministry of Finance, T. Balgobin, who stood in on Finance Minister Ashni Singh’s behalf noted that CESO had run two sets of programmes in Guyana from 1991 to 1996 and a second cycle from 1997 to 2004.

The University of Guyana, the Carnegie School of Home Economics, CNS Channel 12 (Now CNS Channel 6) and the Georgetown Public Hospital were among the organizations which benefited from the past two CESO programmes.

Balgobin said CESO’s 1997-2004 programme saw the completion of 251 assignments which targeted 115 projects in manufacturing and processing and 136 projects in public and private sector service.

The launch of CESO’s workshop was held in the Essequibo Suite, Pegasus and was attended by organization representatives from Latin America, South and North Americas, Africa and Asia.

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