Guyana’s bilateral relations with the People’s Republic of China were further strengthened last week with the signing of agreements to boost priority projects in transportation, health care, training and culture, the Government Information Agency (GINA) reported.
The inking of the agreements between Foreign Affairs Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett; Finance Minister Dr. Ashni Singh and China’s Assistant Commerce Minister, Li Rongcan was part of the Eleventh Session of the Guyana/China Joint Commis-sion on Economic Trade and Technical Cooperation.
According to GINA, the event which was held at the Guyana International Con-ference Centre (GICC), Tur-keyen, also saw the participation of China’s Ambassa-dor to Guyana Hu Wenzhe; Chief Executive Officer, National Communications Network, Mohammad Sattaur and other key government functionaries and the Chinese delegation.
Minister Rodrigues-Birkett in addressing the delegation observed that through a joint commission the two countries have been able to concretize measures to promote programmes of functional cooperation.
This year marks the 27th anniversary of the Guyana/ China Joint Commission and according to the foreign affairs minister the sustained exchange over the years has given added impetus to collaboration at economic and technical levels.
During the Joint Commis-sion meeting, the agreements signed between the two governments were priority projects agreed upon during the last Joint Commission held in Beijing, China three years earlier.
“There have been tangible benefits for Guyana manifested in several projects in more recent years, the modernization of the sugar factory at Skeldon and the construction on this modern international conference centre (GICC) at which we meet,” Rodrigues-Birkett said.
“These projects will have a significant impact on the lives of our people in the building of capacity in the training of our young people at institutions in various disciplines; the deputation of doctors to enhance the delivery of our health sector programmes and senior volunteers to share their expertise in certain key departments of government,” the minister is quoted as saying. She stated also that the industrial sector will benefit from the Guyana Power and Light Project while a ferry vessel which is expected to become operational before the end of this year will significantly enhance the transport sector.
While conveying government’s gratitude for China’s longstanding support over the years, the foreign minister reaffirmed the administration’s continued commitment to the Guyana/China partnership.
And Minister Li Rongcan asserted that new opportunities for future cooperation will be explored, while noting that the visit was to assess the current economic and trade cooperation between the two countries.
Ideas were also to be exchanged on the hosting of the 3rd China/Caribbean Trade and Economic Cooper-ation forum, which will be held in Port-of-Spain, Trini-dad and Tobago later this year.
“I will also be signing a document (for) a three million RMB grant provided by the Chinese Government to the Guyana Government for the agreed project between the two countries while, another document will also be signed for the dispatch of 70 volunteers,” Li Rongcan is quoted as saying.
At the end of the session, GINA said, the functionaries also signed the exchange of notes on government’s ‘One Laptop Per Family’ project which will pave the way for 90,000 households to benefit from a laptop computer each.
Minister Li Rongcan assured that, “The Ministry of Commerce in China is willing to work with the Guyana Government and all walks of life in your country to push forward the trade and economic cooperation between our two countries.”