–34 local exporters matched with overseas businesses
THE Guyana Office for Investment (Go-Invest) has facilitated 55 potential investments worth $276.6 billion within three months, paving the way for the creation of more than 10,000 jobs.
According to information from Go-Invest, applications were received for investments across all platforms and sectors of Guyana’s economy. A business-friendly climate supplemented by the anticipated economic ascension is being credited for the attraction of those expressions of interest.
The aggregate investments are expected to create 9,386 direct jobs when the projects are fully completed. There will also be spin-off benefits which will reach suppliers, cottage industries, individuals and other sections of the economy.
From 2017 to 2019, the unemployment rate in Guyana increased from 12.2 per cent to 13.4 per cent, but the new administration aims to reverse this over the next five years through the creation of 50,000 jobs.
The country is moving closer to this vision, with the latest investments set to come on stream very soon.
Of the 55 projects, 28 are local, 25 are Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) and there are two joint ventures. The FDI agreements were predominantly within the tourism and services sectors.
According to the investors’ projections, the value of the FDI projects totalled G$239 billion, while the joint ventures totalled G$5.3 billion.
The FDI projects include the construction of world-class hotels across the country, to cater for the anticipated increase in visitors who are being attracted by the nation’s burgeoning oil-and-gas sector and its spin-off benefits. Total investments in the hospitality sector value close to US$1 billion (G$215B).
Proposals have been received from major players in the hotel industry such as, the Sheraton, The Element, Delta Marriott, Best Western Hotels and Resorts, the H-Tower Luxury Hotel, the Hyatt Hotels Corporation, the Radisson Hotels, and the Hilton Hotels and Resorts, among others.
According to a study by Oxford Economics, hotel operations and guest spending support eight million jobs across the U.S. alone. The same study found that a typical hotel with 100 occupied rooms per night supports 230 local jobs every year. And the nation’s hotel and lodging industry brings other important benefits to local communities.
These businesses are a cornerstone for local economic activity, providing increased tax revenue, capital investment, tourism-related development and promotion, civic leadership, charitable contributions and sponsorship. These benefits are also expected to accrue to Guyana, as the country continues to function as an investment magnet.
Outside of the hospitality sector, Nexus Machining of Guyana is partnering with Louisiana’s Machine Tech Inc, while GUYSON Engineering is partnering with K + B Industry Inc from the U.S.
On the local side, notable investments include the expansion of Royal Chicken Inc, which will be doubling its production line with state-of-the-art machinery. This investment is valued at G$531.2 million.
Other notable local projects include John Fernandes Limited providing services to the oil-and-gas industry and ZECO Industrial Engineering.
According to investors’ figures, the value of local investments for the period August to November is G$27.9 billion, primarily in the agriculture, tourism, services and light-manufacturing sectors. Those projects are projected to create at least 1,752 jobs when fully operational.
“Despite the global pandemic our export department continued to work with our exporters. The agency matched 34 local businesses with overseas clients. These were involved in the supply of sugar, teas, prefab houses, straw mats and wooden furniture to Trinidad, St. Lucia, London and Barbados,” Go-Invest said.
The agency continues to work closely with other key government agencies such as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and through various collaborations with Guyana’s overseas missions, the Ministry of Housing and Water through the central Housing and Planning Authority, Guyana Lands and Surveys, Ministry of Finance through the Guyana Revenue Authority, Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce, Guyana Tourism Authority and Guyana’s private sector organisations.
“Our 2021 plan is to assist in retooling our foreign missions with investment prospectus in addition [to] conducting out- reaches across the world,” said Go-Invest.