US Eximbank offers US$2B in funding to Guyana
Guyana and the United States Export-Import Bank (EximBank) on Wednesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to finance projects in Guyana – outside of oil and gas – for up to an initial US$2 billion.
The signing took place in Washington D.C where President Irfaan Ali is currently leading a high-level delegation.
The agreement was signed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Hugh Todd and the President of the EXIM Bank, Reta Jo Lewis.
First Vice President and Vice Chair of the Board of Directors at the bank, Judith Pryor also witnessed the signing.
In brief remarks after the signing, Dr. Ali said the move was “dynamic, bold and futuristic in advancing the cause of both countries.”
He said the areas identified show the broad and multifaceted nature of the leadership at the bank, pointing out that most investors narrowly focus on Guyana’s oil and gas opportunities.
“… but there are other significant and distinct advantages.
“We have been a leader on climate change, the environmental, biodiversity, food security and agriculture and we have crucial infrastructural links that can unlock the potential of our natural resources,” he said.
Dr. Ali explained that the bank, and the United States government by extension, are regarded as “partners of choice” because of their shared values and principles.
The Guyanese Head of State regarded the signing of the MoU and a demonstration of the commitment to remove inhibiting factors that have long affected easy access to financing by countries across the Caribbean region, including Guyana.
“It is the single most important signal for Guyana and the region that the United States is serious about its commitment and promise.
“This signal is an open invitation for the private sector and leadership of both countries,” Dr. Ali said.
In anticipation of a visit by representatives of the bank and the U.S private sector, Dr. Ali assured the gathering that Guyana would make full use of the opportunity afforded to it.
“This is not a simple MoU but one that has the potential to unlock all of this… We will aggressively and actively pursue this MoU to its full realization, ensuring a win-win for us both.
Dr. Ali said on his return home, he will immediately examine the next steps and looks forward to pairing opportunities between the private sector in the United States and Guyana.
“Our connection is not only geographic in the space called the western hemisphere but we are closely connected because the largest diaspora of Guyanese resides in the United States, so we have people to people and cultural connection,” Dr. Ali said noting that in this development phase of the country the government wants to see the United States participation.