President David Granger on Thursday posited that the recent Local Government Elections (LGE) paved the way for economic development in Guyana as it presents the opportunity to promote business and drive economic development for the modernisation of the various municipalities.
President David Granger, outgoing GCCI President Lance Hinds, Junior Vice President Padma Kunjbeharry and GCCI Secretary Nicholas Boyer at the AGM on Thursday
As such, he stated that it is imperative that Government, as well as the private sector, ensure that efforts of development are not concentrated solely in the capital City, but spread throughout the country.
Granger was at the time addressing shareholders and stakeholders at the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (GCCI) 126th Annual General Meeting (AGM), at the Pegasus Hotel, Georgetown.
“Guyana’s hinterland and rural landscape will be opened for orderly development. Our towns will lead this charge and in the process, create boundless business opportunities for the business community in Guyana. Our aim is to modernise local government and to catapult our municipalities into the 21st century. Our objective is to catalyse the economies of our towns and communities… Tremendous opportunities for all will unfold as we boost the economies of our regions through the instrumentality of our ‘capital towns’. The challenges that present themselves will be dwarfed by the opportunities for economic growth that lie ahead,” he stated.
The Head of State further posited that the LGE has renewed economic opportunities for innovation, investment and infrastructural development, saying: “The elections for our Neighbourhood Democratic Councils and municipalities paved the way for a change in the way our towns and communities are governed. They also paved the way for a reappraisal of the contribution they can make toward creating economically powerful regions.”
He further related that with the Official Gazette published on October 21, 2015 authorising the establishment of three new towns, namely; Bartica, Lethem, and Mabaruma, along with Mahdia, which is slated to become a town later this year, a ‘capital town’ mind-set will be instilled in these areas which will see the role of towns in moving beyond providing traditional municipal services.
“The new emphasis should be on promoting business, driving economic development and giving leadership to our regions. Guyana will develop only if regions are strong. Our regions must no longer be viewed as mere administrative appendages of the Central Government. Our regions must become motors of economic growth. The potential of our regions is indisputable,” Granger iterated.