Nine years after investing in Guyana, Surinamese company, Assuria General and Life Insurance Companies is now expanding its operations here with the construction of its G$800 million Headquarters (HQ) on Church and Carmichael Streets in Georgetown.
The sod-turning ceremony for the five-storey modern building was held on Wednesday; the project, which is being executed by Nabi Construction Inc., is expected to be completed within 14 months.
Assuria’s Managing Director, Yogindra Arjune, during brief remarks, said the company will continue to deliver exceptional products and services to Guyana. So far, there are eight Assuria branches countrywide with a new branch to be opened in Essequibo, Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam) soon.
“This is indeed a high point in our Assuria Guyana’s history. This modern building is being constructed to highlight that we are here to stay and contribute to the development of Guyana,” Arjune said.
The Managing Director further emphasised that the company is ISO certified and provides international best quality services and products.
“…with this building we can continue to provide that service in a better and more comfortable environment to all stakeholders,” the Managing Director noted.
Delivering the feature address at the ceremony was Finance Minister, Dr Ashni Singh, who stated that Assuria’s entry into Guyana continues to be viewed as a very positive thing for the insurance sector. He said the construction of its headquarters in Guyana is a significant and tangible investment.
“Once again by Assuria’s decision to construct its own headquarters in Guyana, you are demonstrating as you did in 2012, your confidence and optimism as it relates to the Guyanese market and Guyanese economy,” Dr Singh said.
According to Dr Singh, insurance is vital to any company and household risk management tool kit. Dr Singh urged citizens to think about the risks they face and what insurance services are available to help mitigate those risks.
“There are a lot of people in Guyana who believe perhaps that insurance is a thing you can do without or you take the absolute minimum insurance that is required because you must have insurance,” Dr Singh said.
As such, he called on the insurance sector to do more to educate people about the importance of insurance. The sector was also encouraged to focus on innovation and introducing new insurance products for businesses and households.
Meanwhile, Dr Singh lauded Assuria for expanding its operation at the regional level and urged domestic companies in Guyana to look beyond the local domestic market space.
“There is nothing to stop, just as Assuria spotted an opportunity in Guyana, there is nothing to stop Guyanese companies looking beyond Guyana. There are good business opportunities outside of our domestic economic space outside of the confines of our domestic economy.”
With the booming oil and gas industry, Guyana remains a hotspot for international and regional business and investment interests. According to Dr Singh, the country will remain a welcoming environment for international and regional companies.
“I would urge at every available opportunity, I would urge the international business and investor community to look at the business opportunities and investment opportunities that are in Guyana,” Dr Singh said.