Financial & Investment forums, coaching clinics for sacked sugar workers


The Guyana Sugar Corporation Inc. (GuySuCo) will be hosting its ‘Business, Financial and Investment Forums’ in the last week of January 2018. The forums form part of its ‘Economic Resilience’ component of its ‘Sustainable Communities Programme’ for the sugar-dependent communities in the vicinity of Skeldon, Rose Hall, Enmore and Wales Estates.

In a statement on Monday, January 15, 2018, GuySuCo said the first forum will be held at the Enmore Community Centre for persons from East Demerara and Wales Estates, and another at the Skeldon Community Centre for those from Rose Hall and Skeldon Estates.

The state-owned agency has terminated the employment of some 4,000 workers from four estates across the industry.

Focus at the forums will be opportunities in investment, to purchase bonds and shares, banking services such as fixed deposits, business ventures, insurance, medical and pension packages among others.

The initiative is being hosted in collaboration with the Ministry of Business’ Small Business Bureau (SBB) includes four ‘Coaching Clinics’ for ex-employees of GuySuCo.

According to the statement from the Corporation, the programme aims to implement “shock-counteraction and shock-absorption measures to support ex-employees of GuySuCo as well as their families and residents in the communities.”

GuySuCo outlined that the specific objectives of the forums and coaching clinics are to: provide appropriate business, financial and investment advice to ex-employees who will be receiving severance payment; establish a system for providing coaching in business, financial and investment for these ex-employees and create opportunities for them to access advice on insurance, medical  and pension packages.

It will also seek to establish a system for formalizing banking arrangements for those who are currently outside of the system and who are interested in becoming entrepreneurs; and establish a process for assisting interested parties to fulfil banking requirements, such as referees and recommendations.

These activities will be coordinated by GuySuCo and Ministry of Business, Small Business Bureau while Banking institutions, Insurance companies, the Private Sector Commission and the Georgetown and Berbice Chambers of Commerce and Industry are invited to facilitate sessions on business, financial and investment opportunities.

In his recent statement, President David Granger said GuySuCo has established an Alternative Livelihood Programme (ALP) and embarked on the training of employees to work in new operational fields across the industry in places such as the field workshop and providing services.

The President said that GuySuCo has engaged 500 employees from the West and East Demerara Estates with over 100 of them signalling their willingness to be retrained – in fields such as carpentry, masonry, plumbing, mechanical and electrical works and in small business enterprises.

He committed to continue engaging stakeholders, the Guyana Sugar Corporation, Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union and the National Association of Agricultural, Commercial and Industrial Employees and the workers, in a statement which he disclosed that the workers will be paid 50% of their severance now and 50% mid-year.

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