Propelled by multi-billion-barrel oil and gas resources, Guyana’s growing prominence in the region was underscored this week in a meeting with United States (US) Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken, and President Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali.
“Guyana has been a very strong partner of the United States and, also in many ways, a global leader,” Secretary Blinken said. “We are working together in our region and beyond to try to find solutions to challenges [that] include the climate, food security [and] energy security. We are working on these things together.”
He was keen to note that Guyana plays an integral role in the fight against climate change, with its forests the size of England that stores 19.5 gigatons of carbon dioxide (CO2).
“Quite remarkably, something like 86% of Guyana is forest and it is a remarkable contributor in that way alone that we face with climate change,” Secretary Blinken said. He also added that the State looks forward to continuing conversations started by President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris with other CARICOM heads of state at the Summit of the Americas.
Meanwhile, President Ali emphasized that the US is an “important strategic partner” of Guyana. He outlined that Guyana is seeking to balance the production of its vast oil and gas resources with protection of the environment.
“We look forward to discussing how jointly we can continue to work on the issues of food security, climate, financing, working in the region in terms of debt crisis facing CARICOM, but more importantly, finding a balanced development strategy, and in doing so, staying true to the value system, principles that both of us believe so strongly in—that is a democratic society where transparency, accountability, and strong governance support for the development of Guyana,” President Ali stated.
The President’s delegation to the US includes Vice President Dr Bharrat Jagdeo; Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Hugh Todd; Foreign Secretary Robert Persaud and Ambassador of Guyana to the US, Samuel Hinds. US Ambassador to Guyana, Sarah-Ann Lynch, and other US government representatives also attended the meeting.