Guyana and France must continue to work together—PM

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Prime Minister, Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips, today praised the relationship between Guyana and France, during a visit by Non-Resident Ambassador Antoine Joly.

The two officials met at a reception held at Cara Lodge in Georgetown in honour of the upcoming French National Day (Bastille Day), which is formally observed on July 14.

During his remarks, the Prime Minister said that it is imperative that both countries continue to embrace and develop their well-established relationship, through many shared areas of mutual interests.

“As we celebrate your country’s National Day, it is appropriate for Guyana and France to recommit to working together for the wellbeing and prosperity of our peoples”.

He indicated that the two nations could collaborate in ICT, agriculture, mining, hydro-power electricity and on “objectives of sustainable development and clean renewable energy development”.

The Senior Government official noted that he is also looking forward to the increased cooperation in the area of security.

“The recent signature of the letter of intent on cooperation in the field of defence will provide impetus for enhanced security cooperation”.

A section of the gathering at the reception held at the Cara Lodge in Georgetown (Photo: Office of the Prime Minister/ July 8, 2021)

The French Military only recently participated in Operations Tradewinds 2021; a multilateral military exercise hosted in Guyana last month.

Ambassador Joly also spoke of partnerships and pointed out that since France through French Guiana, shares the Guiana Shield with Guyana, there are many areas of mutual interests.

“The wish of French Guiana to be more present and involved in the region will not be at the expense of your other strategic partners, but complementary based on our comparative advantages, we are neighbours confronted with the same challenges, we share the Guiana Shield and just like you, we value it and want to protect it”.

According to Ambassador Joly, he decided to cancel the French National Day celebrations in Guyana in 2019 after the previous administration had procrastinated in acknowledging the no-confidence motion against them and subsequently in 2020, due to the difficulty of obtaining the results of the national elections.

“This year, despite the Covid-19 situation, which explains the limited format, I’m happy to celebrate with you, the return of Guyana in the rule of law and democracy; principles that join those of our National Day of freedom, equality and brotherhood,” Ambassador Joly stated.

Also present at today’s event were Senior Minister in the Office of the President with responsibility for Finance,  Dr Ashni Singh and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance, Gail Teixeira.

Guyana and France established diplomatic relations on June 22, 1967. (Office of the Prime Minister release)

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