President of Suriname, Chandrikapersad Santokhi, on Tuesday, said the public and private sectors in both Guyana and Suriname will be called upon to provide a temporary solution to ensure that the ferry service between the two countries resumes shortly.
He was speaking during a joint press briefing with Guyana’s President, Dr Irfaan Ali who is currently in Suriname as the main international guest for the ongoing 45th Independence Anniversary.
Suspended in May 2019 for repairs and then again in March 2020 when Suriname recorded its first COVID-19 case, Santokhi said: “there will be a change in that situation.”
He pointed out that the resumption of the MV Canawaima Ferry Service was a topic on be on agenda.
Santokhi said the vessel will likely have to be brought to dry dock but he intends to seek advice on what actions the two countries can take in the meantime, all the while underscoring the critical role that the Canawaima Ferry Service plays in people-to-people contact, bilateral tourism and trade between Guyana and Suriname.
President Ali also briefly spoke to the issue and said that the two leaders have agreed that the issues affecting the resumption of the ferry service be urgently resolved.
Both Guyana and Suriname have had their borders closed as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic but looks to have all outstanding issues with the ferry service resolved in anticipation of the resumption of the movement of goods and people between South Drain and Moleson Creek.
The issue was previously raised during a working group visit by a Surinamese delegation in Guyana last month.