Following the signing of a US$7.2 million Line of Credit agreement, thousands of hinterland homes will soon be supplied with solar electricity.
The agreement between the Governments of Guyana and India was inked Wednesday evening at the Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre by Minister within the Office of the President with responsibility for Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh, and Indian High Commissioner to Guyana, Dr. K.J Srinivasa. The signing coincided with the 57th anniversary celebration of Indian Technical Economic Cooperation (ITEC) day.
ITEC is offered to Guyanese by the Government of India, to develop Guyana’s human resources. The Line of Credit agreement forms part of the programme.
During the feature address, Dr. Singh said the agreement will entail the government providing electricity to 30,000 homes. He also thanked the Indian High Commissioner for making the initiative possible.
“On a deeply personal level, to those 30,000 families, delivering electricity to their home for the first time will literally be the single biggest thing that will probably happen to them in an entire generation.”
He further added that while “it might not be the big project on the radar with the Ministry of External Affairs of India, but this project will have a truly transformative impact for 30,000 Guyanese families.”
Minister Singh said progammes like ITEC play an “extremely important role” in the rapid development of Guyana.
“ITEC has provided remarkable opportunities for Guyanese professionals to obtain world class international training exposure and remarkable experience that could only have enhanced their ability to serve in Guyana and contribute to development, and benefitted development of their own world view. Needless to say, the ITEC programme is only one aspect of Guyana’s vast cooperation agenda with India over the years.”
Over 600 Guyanese including President Dr Irfaan Ali, have benefitted from the programme.
The wife of Prime Minister Mark Phillips, Mrs. Mignon Bowen-Phillips also benefitted from the initiative. Recounting her six-weeks in India, Mrs. Bowen-Phillips described her experience as “exciting”.
In brief remarks, Dr. Srinivasa said Guyana and India have shared strong bilateral relations for a number of years and committed to strengthening it over the years.