GEORGETOWN, Guyana (GINA) -- President of Guyana, Donald Ramotar, members of the Cabinet and representatives of the diplomatic corps were among those who turned out in their numbers on Saturday evening in Georgetown to celebrate the 202nd independence anniversary of Mexico.
The head of state said that, as another milestone for Mexico is being celebrated, one should be reminded that their independence began with a dream of having a free independent and united Mexico.
“Mexico is a liberated country, constantly growing and a leader in the international community in several respects… Mexico has a lot to be proud of… we (Guyana) share in that pride,” Ramotar said.
Speaking specifically to Guyana’s relation with Mexico, he stated, “The groundwork for the intensification of our bilateral activity between our countries has been well laid… we hope to work closely with the embassy here in Georgetown to bring these projects to fruition… we also hope to pursue the considerable potential which exists for increasing investment opportunities between Guyana and Mexico.”
Ramotar explained that, notwithstanding Guyana’s size compared to that of Mexico’s population, many similarities exist between the two countries, specifically in the political system, as both countries currently share an identical parliamentary reality.
He added that as the forces of globalisation drive both countries closer, continued collaboration between the two is inevitable and indeed very necessary, as the global economic downturn continues to have adverse effects on many countries.
“Guyana has little or no control over the international economy… however, we have taken steps at the national level to ensure that essential social services are protected and proper fiscal policies are maintained,” the head of state said.
Whilst this is being done, Ramotar explained that energies are being focused on harnessing all available resources to put the nation on a trajectory of growth and development, while being mindful of protecting the environment.
“We have a strategy… a Low Carbon Development Strategy… which we hope to keep pushing forward and with growing hope, our hydro project will come on stream and help us to reduce our carbon footprint,” he said.
He pointed out that since the establishment of diplomatic relations between Mexico and Guyana, both countries have enjoyed a strong diplomatic partnership which the establishment of the Mexican Embassy in Guyana serves to deepen and strengthen “because of the similar aspirations for a just and peaceful world where our people can advance in their interests, hopes and ambitions for a prosperous life”.
He added that, with technical assistance offered by Mexico, especially in the area of training, national efforts are complemented to yield a better educated and trained workforce to provide critical services in various sectors, in a rapidly changing world which demands more and varied skills in every aspect of life.
“The conclusion of our memorandum of understanding last year for the establishment of a consultative mechanism on matters of common interest in areas such as economic, political, scientific and environmental issues is another example of our increasing collaboration,” the head of state explained.
He believes that the ongoing cultural events held at the Mexican Embassy in Georgetown help to promote a better understanding of Mexican culture among Guyanese and create a better understanding and a deeper appreciation of each other’s people.
Ramotar also pointed out that the geopolitical role of Mexico is important in addressing the many challenges faced by the region, especially in the area of food security, climate change and transnational organised crime.
He added that his government is encouraged by the continued interest shown by Mexico in supporting regional development efforts and the CARICOM-Mexico Cooperation Programme.
“We wish to therefore continue to urge Mexico to use its considerable influence on the international stage to further advance the interest of the region…I must commend your government for its continued friendship and support, not only for my country but, also for the region as a whole, particularly in these challenging times in international affairs,” Ramotar said.
Francisco Olguin, Mexico’s Ambassador to Guyana, said that it is great to be in Guyana – a country with the greatest potential in the Caribbean Community, which also houses the headquarters of CARICOM.
“Upon my arrival I was impressed by Guyana for its natural beauty and resources… but especially for the enormous amount of people who wish us well from many walks of life who are with us tonight,” Olguin said.
He explained that Guyana’s political system is fascinating and bears resemblance to Mexico, as they both share a situation where the opposition has power in the parliament.
“Mexico/Guyana also has shown considerable resilience in the face of the world economic crisis… Guyana’s economy has achieved a 5% growth for five consecutive years which is most impressive,” Olguin stated.
He added that Mexico has a strong emerging economy, which grew almost 16% from 2009 to 2012 with 3.9% in 2011 and 4.3% in 2012.
“Our growth has created more than two million jobs in the past five years… today our employment rate is one of the lowest… our financial system remains robust despite the high level of uncertainty in the international financial markets,” Olguin said.
Olguin explained that Mexico has been a responsible player in the world affairs during the past recent years as shown by their role in the Supreme Council in 2009 and 2010.
He added that the establishing of a diplomatic mission in Georgetown strengthens ties with Guyana.
As Guyana’s relationship with Mexico progresses to achieve higher heights, Mexico has made outstanding achievements in Guyana’s national development process and has become an important player in the hemisphere, more so in the international arena.
Several Guyanese within the last decade have benefitted from scholarships from the Mexican government to pursue studies in fields such as environmental studies, water resources management, engineering, physics and tourism, whilst Spanish Language training is offered to teachers as a second language.