Brazil takes important step on Lethem Road, Hydro Project

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Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Guyana, Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett, and the Minister of External Relations of Brazil, Antonio de Aguiar Patriota
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Guyana, Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett, and the Minister of External Relations of Brazil, Antonio de Aguiar Patriota

The governments of Guyana and Brazil have agreed to establish a joint commission on infrastructure development, which will see this this country benefiting from several projects.

Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Guyana, Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett, and the Minister of External Relations of Brazil, Antonio de Aguiar Patriota, held a meeting on the sidelines of the MERCOSUR Summit in Montevideo on July 11, 2013, where they discussed a number of cooperation issues between the two sides.

Among the areas discussed are, Transportation,Energy and Financing.

Below is the joint statement issued by the two ministers after the meeting.

 

Joint Statement on Infrastructure Projects

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett, and the Minister of External Relations of the Federative Republic of Brazil, Antonio de Aguiar Patriota, held a meeting on the sidelines of the MERCOSUR Summit in Montevideo on July 11, 2013.

On that occasion:

  1. The Ministers recalled the inauguration of the Takutu River Bridge in September 2009 in the presence of then Presidents Bharrat Jagdeo and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. They remarked that the bridge is the first land link between the two countries and a symbolic milestone of the strengthening bilateral ties.

 

2. They recognized the potential of the Infrastructure Projects to the integration of the two countries, with direct benefits for both local populations, and expressed satisfaction with the results accomplished by the “Guyana-Brazil Working Group on Infrastructure” (Guyana-Brazil WG on Infrastructure) – created by the “Memorandum of Understanding between the Federative Republic of Brazil and the Cooperative Republic of Guyana on Infrastructure Projects in Guyana” (signed by the Chancellors in Brasilia, on December 5th, 2012).

 

3. They noted that the Guyana-Brazil WG on Infrastructure achieved its objective of evaluating means to promote infrastructure projects in the fields of transportation and energy that would benefit both countries.

 

Transportation Projects

4. The Ministers also took note of the existing studies about improving the 454 km of the Linden-Lethem stretch of the road that links the capital of Guyana to Brazil. They remarked that the improvement of the road is one of the initiatives of the Priority Integration Projects Agenda of the South American Council of Infrastructure and Planning (COSIPLAN) of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR).

5. Considering the common desire of moving forward as soon as possible with the project of upgrading the road, they highlighted the need to execute the cost analysis of the initiative, with agreed terms of reference. They agreed that the successful completion of the appropriate analysis will provide conditions for starting the project.

6. The Ministers shared the view that once the road planning is underway, activities could begin on planning of a deep water port development

Energy Projects

7. The Ministers recognized the benefits to Guyana’s economy of using its hydropower potential in order to both supply local demand for power and commercialize surplus generated power, observing mutually advantageous conditions.

8. They noted that the relevant sections of both governments will expand the studies on the energy projects, following a timetable agreed to by the parties, for evaluation and possible development of hydropower plants and associated transmission lines, within framework of the regional energy integration.

Financing

9. The Ministers concluded that the feasibility of the projects require a financially sustainable structure, which may be composed of official mechanisms, the contribution of multilateral financial institutions and/or private investment.

10. They also agreed on the necessity of a deeper analysis of the technical, economic, financial and environmental feasibility of the projects, in order to estimate the revenue generation and financing structuring.

Creation of the “Guyana-Brazil Joint Commission to Infrastructure Development”

11. Considering that the infrastructure projects in the transportation and energy fields will promote the economic and social development of both countries, the Ministers restated the political disposition to move forward with the bilateral discussion to evaluate the attainment of the projects. To do so, it was agreed that the “Brazil-Guyana Joint Commission on Infrastructure Development” be created.