President David Granger, on Saturday evening, called on the Rotary Club of New Amsterdam to play its part in ensuring that the East Berbice-Corentyne (Region Six) becomes a commercial and economic hub, taking the lead in Guyana’s economic recovery.
Speaking at the Club’s World Understanding and Peace Dinner, to an audience, which included the Club’s president Mr. Chris Hicks, past president Mr. Narine Sooknanan and Director of Club Service, Tajpaul Adjodhea, Mr. Granger said that the Corentyne region is a sleeping giant which, if awakened, can ensure Guyana’s growth and development. While every citizens must do their part to make this a reality, he pointed out that it is non-governmental organisations (NGOs) such as the Rotary Club that must lead those efforts.
“President Granger said, “[East Berbice-Corentyne] can lead the economic recovery of the entire country. It can influence the economic development of the Caribbean community through the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME). This is no exaggeration… This region comprises 96 communities. It is the only region with three towns. Guyana needs strong regions… We need economically robust regions and that is why we are paying attention to strengthening our regions. The Corentyne is a sleeping giant. It needs to be aroused from its slumber. It needs to fulfil its unquestionable potential of the food bowl of the country and the Caribbean.”
Noting that the East Berbice-Corentyne Region is the only region to be bordered by two countries – Brazil and Suriname; is the third largest administrative region, spanning over 36,000 square kilometres and is bigger than Belize, Burundi, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, the President said that the residents here must now take the initiative and steps to build a strong, resilient, economically robust region, which will take the country forward.
“The Corentyne enjoys an interesting and an enjoyable democratic spread. This region is steeped in heritage and history. It is rich in cultural diversity. The Corentyne is the agricultural heartland in Guyana, richly endowed with fertile, cultivable lands. There are three sugar estates; Albion, Rose Hall and Skeldon. This region has produced over 130,000 tonnes of sugar in 2015. This region is home to the country’s largest water control system, evidenced in the Black Bush Polder scheme. It is supported by fishing, farming, cattle rearing, timber, bauxite mining [and] shipping. The region is the country’s cattle ranch, its sugar bowl, its rice pot. Its fish market and a market place for its commodities. The Corentyne also possesses untapped potential for tourism; eco and heritage tourism,” President said.