Guyana undergoing major transformation to build world-class service sector

-President Ali

Guyana is undergoing major transformation in several key areas to build a world-class service sector, President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali said on Saturday.

During an engagement with the Guyanese diaspora in Canada, where  he discussed Guyana’s development and numerous investment opportunities, President Ali said the move ties into government’s intention to build and market Guyana as its own unique brand, rather than being modelled after another country, as many tend to believe.

President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali addressing members of the diaspora in Canada

“Two days ago, I had an interview with BBC, and they asked me ‘what country are you modelling yourselves after?’ And I said, ‘what is wrong with us developing our own model?’ We must have the ability to design, and propel our own brand. That is what is going to make us different. What are the values that define us as Guyanese? What are the principles that define us as Guyanese? What is the structure of our society that defines us as Guyanese? These are the things that many people say are the ‘soft issues’… But what we consider to be the ‘soft issues’ are the fundamental issues to building prosperity,” he underscored.

President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali interacting with members of the diaspora in Canada

The head of state noted that a world-class service sector will require modernisation of Guyana’s records management system, using biometrics and electronic identification cards and passports, among other e-management systems, and embracing robotics and technology.

“We have to now utilise the technology that is available to move us quickly up the chain, as expensive as it is. We have to transform everything that we have learned to do all our lives onto an electronic platform. We have to unlearn decades upon decades of what we have learned, and then, in a short time, relearn what is now needed,” President Ali stressed.

Members of the diaspora in Canada

To that end, Guyana has implemented the single-window construction permitting system, and other single-window systems to remove human bias, reduce bureaucracy, and increase transparency for greater efficiency.

“The system must be results-oriented, not process-oriented. The old system was process-oriented. You had to go here and then go there. But now, I can just go there in a more efficient way and use less energy. So, the system must be results-oriented. And results-oriented does not mean sacrificing something for something. It means integrating transparency and accountability, and achieving the results,” Dr Ali expressed.

Members of the diaspora in Canada

He said government is now making all the necessary investments and legislative changes to ensure its plans for modernisation and service delivery improvement a reality.

The administration is also investing heavily in human capital through the modernisation and reconstruction of a number of schools across the country, introducing new subjects such as Spanish and coding to young learners to build human capital.

Government is also investing in the country’s human resources by providing free tertiary education, skills training programmes and institutes, and building training centres for niche skills such as hospitality, and assisting Guyanese creatives in boosting their creative capacity through financial support.

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