President of Ghana Nana Akufo-Addo arrived in the South American country of Guyana in the early hours of Tuesday morning for what is the first State Visit by the African leader to the soon-to-be newest oil producer on the continent.
Guyana’s President David Granger and senior government officials greeted the Ghanaian President and his entourage at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport just after midnight on Tuesday.
Mr. Granger had previous indicated that the State Visit will serve to enhance relations and cooperation between the two countries. “We are confident that this visit will result in practical measures aimed at enhancing relations and cooperation between our two states, particularly in the fields of agriculture, culture, energy, environment, investment, petroleum production, private sector cooperation, tourism and transportation.”
In this regard, the Guyanese leader explained that “Guyana is in transition towards the establishment of a ‘green state’ which will see more emphasis being placed on the protection of our environment, the preservation of our biodiversity, the promotion of renewable energy generation, and practical measures to ensure climate adaptation. Guyana’s ‘green state’ will allow us to respond more effectively to the challenges posed by climate change.”
As recently as the 1980s, the West African nation of Ghana was in crisis, crippled by hunger after a series of military coups. But it has held peaceful elections since 1992, and its economic outlook turned considerably brighter about a decade ago, with the discovery of major offshore oil deposits.
Guyana itself was recently catapulted to the world stage after US oil major ExxonMobil made its first oil discovery in 2015 at the Liza field offshore the country. The company has since made 13 discoveries amounting to more than 5.5 billion barrels of oil equivalent with production set to get underway by Q1 2020.