Guyana is looking to strengthen bilateral relations with Finland, especially in the field of education, President David Granger said Wednesday when he accredited a new Finnish Ambassador – Pertti Ikonen.
“Guyana attaches the highest importance to education, which will become a linchpin of our Decade of Development: 2020-2029,” the President stated.
“We have much to learn from Finland’s excellent educational system,” the President added.
“Finland is often described, internationally, as being one of the most technologically advanced nations,” the Finnish Ambassador stated.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Guyana and Finland, with the two countries establishing ties on April 2, 1979.
“Our relations are founded on mutual respect for each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, mutual non-interference in each other’s internal affairs, cooperation for mutual benefit, respect for treaties and international law and the maintenance of regional peace and security,” the President stated.
The Ambassador said Finnish products can be found anywhere in the world “and brand names like…Nokia…and Wartsila are also well known in Guyana.”
“I wish these and other Finnish companies could contribute to the transformation of the Guyanese economy,” he stated.
Ambassador Ikonen said that as Guyana looks towards transformation, there would be challenges such as efficient governance, competitiveness, and a good business environment.
“I hope that Finland…which has a good track record in all of these fields, could play a positive role in developing Guyana,” he stated.
Mr Granger said Guyana has promulgated a Green State Development Strategy and is moving towards becoming a “green state.”
“The ‘green state’ will place emphasis on the protection of our environment, the preservation of our biodiversity, the promotion of renewable energy and practical measures to ensure climate adaptation,” the President stated.
He noted Finland’s efforts to transition to a carbon-neutral economy by 2035 and said Guyana looks forward to sharing experiences with Finland as regards the promotion of environmental security.
The President noted that Finland has assumed the presidency of the Council of the European Union and said Guyana looks forward to Finland’s support in strengthening the partnership between the European Union and the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States.