Gouveia calls for intensified efforts to promote trade & investment with Cuba
Guyanese entrepreneur Capt. Gerry Gouveia wants CARICOM member countries to match their economic and commercial relations with Cuba to that of their political ties.
Speaking on behalf of the Private Sector Commission (PSC) of Guyana at a reception in Cuba Thursday December 8, 2016 to mark the 44th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations with Cuba on the part of Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados, Gouveia hailed the bold step taken by these countries in the height of the Cold War.
But Gouveia, Chief Executive Officer of the Roraima Group of Companies, said that the changing global environment requires that Guyana and other CARICOM member states “create an enabling environment that would facilitate easy access to doing business thereby generating jobs for the people of Cuba and CARICOM.”
He noted that “barriers still remain within CARICOM to the free movement of goods and services, not to mention people, I urge CARICOM governments and the Cuban authorities to look at those policies which inhibit trade and other aspects of the huge potential that exist for doing business and to take the necessary steps that would allow the private sector to transform that potential into jobs for our people.”
It was pointed out that an encouraging sign was the significant CARICOM presence at last month’s Havana International Fair (FIHAV) and the discussions and negotiations which took place during that event. Gouveia headed the Guyana private sector delegation to that fair.
He said his company has recently teamed up with a Honduran airline, Easy Sky, to facilitate daily air service between Cuba and Guyana which is now providing for Cuban entrepreneurs to travel to Guyana for the purpose of conducting business.
Thursday night’s reception was hosted by the Guyana Embassy in Cuba at the residence of its Ambassador, Halim Majeed and was attended by regional and international diplomatic envoys, senior officials of the Cuban government and participants in an annual Cuba/Caribbean conference held at the University of Havana.
Among the speakers were Secretary General of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS), Ambassador June Soomer and former Cuban Foreign Minister and President of the National Assembly, Ricard Alarcon.