Late last week Ambassador of the European Union to Guyana, Jernej Videtič hosted the second meeting of European businesses operating in Guyana. Also present at the meeting were the Honorary Consuls of EU Member States in Guyana including for Finland, Germany, Ireland and Sweden. Some of the European businesses represented ranged from those operating in telecommunications, oil and gas, fuel distribution, consultancy, agriculture and pesticides, tourism and horticulture.
The highlight of the meeting came in the presence of Commissioner General of the Guyana Revenue Authority, Mr Godfrey Statia, as a guest speaker. He took time to listen to and candidly address a number of concerns and while he impressed upon the gathering that there have been substantive improvements in the functioning and effectiveness of the GRA under his tenure he recognized there still remain challenges which are currently being addressed.
Statia’s participation also helped to shed light on the efforts of the Guyanese Government and the GRA to simplify rules and procedures for foreign businesses in relation to the country’s tax system and served as a stepping stone towards establishing helpful dialogue between European businesses and the GRA in particular on investments.
The meetings hosted by Ambassador Videtič are part of the EU Delegation’s push towards increased economic diplomacy with the primary aim being to assist in improving the business climate for EU businesses operating in Guyana and to aid in attracting further investment from European companies to set up shop in Guyana. The third meeting will be held in the second quarter of 2019.