VP Jagdeo to lead high-level team to West Africa in October
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Vice-President, Bharrat Jagdeo
Vice-President, Bharrat Jagdeo

VICE-President Bharrat Jagdeo is scheduled to lead a high-level team to West Africa during the first week of October, to advance discussions on potential and existing areas of cooperation between Guyana and Ghana.

The proposed visit stems from a discussion between President Dr. Irfaan Ali and the President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on the sidelines of the 76th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York on Tuesday.

The two presidents discussed several matters of mutual interest, among them oil and gas, climate change and the environment, capacity building, and training.

Both leaders agreed that Tuesday’s meeting would result in greater collaboration to address matters of common interest at the global level.

It was reported in June that with more than 40 years of friendship, Guyana and Ghana have reaffirmed their commitment to strengthening relations by deepening the cooperation agenda between the two nations. Guyana and Ghana established diplomatic relations on May 14, 1979.

Both countries are oil producers, and while oil was found in commercial quantities in Guyana in 2015, the “black gold” was discovered offshore the progressive African nation close to five decades ago.

President Dr. Irfaan Ali and Ghana’s the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at the conclusion of bilateral engagements on the sidelines of the 76th United Nations General Assembly in New York

According to Bloomberg, Ghana is estimated to have between five and seven billion barrels of petroleum in reserve, making it the sixth largest in Africa and ranking among the top 25 largest proven reserves in the world. The West African nation also has significant natural gas reserves, reports indicate.

Guyana, which is among the new oil-and-gas producing nations, has witnessed over 20 oil discoveries thus far, and with nine billion barrels of oil equivalent under its belt, Guyana is among the top 20 countries with the largest proven reserves in the world. Like Ghana, Guyana also has significant natural gas reserves.

President Akufo-Addo had visited Guyana in 2019, and on that visit, Ghana entered into two agreements with the then Government of Guyana.

In a bid to capitalise on the West African nation’s experience and expertise in the oil- and-gas sector, the two nations signed an agreement that will see Ghana lending technical support to Guyana’s oil-and-gas industry.

Guyana and Ghana also signed an agreement to abolish visa requirements for citizens of the two States.

And, in January, Presidents Ali and Akufo-Addo committed to advancing and deepening the agenda for cooperation between the two countries, including in the oil-and-gas sector, and on environmental issues.

At the most recent meeting in New York, President Ali was accompanied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Hugh Todd; Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett, and Foreign Secretary Robert Persaud.

The Guyanese Head of State is expected to meet with several other world leaders and high-ranking members of international organisations while in New York for the UNGA this week.

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