Regional ferry to start operations within three months – President Ali

The regional ferry service involving Guyana, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago is expected to begin operations within three months.

President, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali, gave the update on Saturday, as he addressed the opening ceremony of the XII annual IDB consultation with Caribbean Governors, which was held at the Marriott Hotel, Kingston, Georgetown, on Saturday.

President, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali

The ferry will allow the movement of containers and passengers, with the potential to boost trade relations and advance food security efforts.

President Ali said the aim is also to bring on board the regional private sector to implement similar initiatives to enhance the supply chain and logistics arena.

“We have launched the first phase of this. In another two, or three months that ferry will begin operations, and we are hoping that this will instil confidence in the private sector, and for the IDB investors, this is an excellent opportunity to bring a regional consortium together,” the head of state said.

The president also noted that this venture signals the readiness of the three countries to take action to solve shared challenges in the Caribbean region.

According to the head of state, this proactivity falls under a joint slogan, which was dubbed ‘the coalition of the willing’.

“We are not waiting on everyone. Those who are willing to start an innovative project will go ahead, and the others will join when they are ready,” he explained.  

Earlier this week, discussions got underway for the establishment of a common Ferry Service within Caricom, where it was identified that the three countries would soon form a Company to drive the process for the introduction of a regional ferry service. This Company would comprise Directors from each country to facilitate operations.

At this meeting, it was also agreed that a team of technical officials from Trinidad & Tobago will visit Guyana and Barbados to inspect port infrastructure to accommodate the proposed ferry service within two weeks.

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