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Guyana must become the hub for fabrication, machining services for the region, says president Ali

GEORGETOWN, Guyana, (DPI) – His Excellency Dr Irfaan Ali said that Guyana must become the hub for fabrication and machining services for the region while pointing to the many untapped opportunities for growth in the industry. The head of state made this assertion Wednesday, during a press event hosted by Guysons K+B Industries Inc (GKB), at the Marriott Hotel.

The GKB partnership announced that it plans to convert the Enmore sugar packaging facility to a modern fabrication facility, which when completed will employ some 500 persons, including sugar workers, from the community and its environs.

The company is a majority-owned Guyanese company and the first of its kind to offer tubular goods, premium threading, and accessory services as well as turnkey manufacturing solutions in the country.

Impact of massive investment

President Ali not only acknowledged the magnitude of the investment, but the impact it would have on the community through the provision of jobs as well as training and capacity building.

The overall investment is valued at US$35M, while the immediate investment will be US$7.5M.

New growth poles

President Ali said that his government will create new growth poles as the population increases on the East Coast and East Bank of Demerara.

He also pointed to the importance of creating the supporting transportation infrastructure to facilitate the necessary linkages between communities.

“We have to have an efficient transportation system. We have to ensure we get that infrastructure in place as fast as possible to support this type of private investment that we are talking about here.”

To facilitate this, he explained that the government is designing an elaborate road network transportation system that will be linked to new industrial sites along the East Coast corridor.

Opportunities on the horizon

The president also announced several new initiatives in the pipeline which will result in the creation of more jobs as well as the opportunity for growth and development in communities.

“We have another announcement that is coming from a Surinamese-Guyanese company that will create a few hundreds of jobs also, eventually going up to 1,500 jobs along the East Coast corridor; that deals with processing, manufacturing, beverage production, and that is also coming on stream.”

He added too that a Barbadian delegation is also looking at the opportunities that exist for the creation of the Guyana-Barbados food terminal to support the agricultural sector.

Integrated plan

The president said an integrated plan is in place to ensure that all communities in Guyana benefit from the country’s massive growth and advancement.

He added that there will be investments and announcements in all the sectors, which will open up opportunities and pave the way for the creation of more jobs.

“When we spoke about 50,000 jobs in the campaign it was not a fallacy. It was an understanding of what lies ahead and more importantly, a commitment that we knew we had in our team to deliver to the people, and we are doing that not only in a sustained way but in a very, very, aggressive way. Guyana is open for business, Guyana only asks of you to bring along the local population with you.”

While president Ali congratulated the company, he reminded them that they have signed on to a number of commitments and milestones that have to be met and that their deliverables will be monitored.

“The jobs, the investment, what has to be done, the type of changes that we’d have to see – it’s going to be monitored by NICIL, [ministry of] finance and Go-Invest and they’ve committed themselves in writing to this. It shows their seriousness about advancing this very quickly.”

Senior minister in the office of the president with responsibility for finance, Dr Ashni Singh also delivered remarks at the event and pointed to the partnerships which are being created to ensure local participation and which embody the spirit of the local content framework.

In his remarks, chief executive officer of GKB Faizal Khan, thanked the government for its continued support and pointed to the alignment with the government’s vision of bringing more oilfield work to Guyana for Guyanese employment. He noted too that GKB’s expansion plans for the future align with this vision.

GKB is committed to also retraining sugar workers who are experienced.

“Our goal is to equip them with the necessary tools that will help to flourish their skills and services and have it regenerated back into the development of Guyana,” the head of sales for K+B Industries Nick Becnel added.

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