Corentyne River Bridge: Supervisory tendering process, drafting of Joint Agreement to start

President Dr Irfaan Ali and his Surinamese counterpart, President Chandrikapersad Santokhi, along with their respective teams of ministers met on Saturday to continue discussions on the Corentyne River Bridge

See below for a Joint Statement by Suriname and Guyana following strategic dialogue between the two presidents: 

Head of State of the Republic of Suriname, H.E. Chandrikapersad Santokhi and Head of
State of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, H.E. Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali, met on
Saturday 23rd March, 2024 at Soesdyke, Guyana for follow-up discussions regarding the
building of a bridge over the Corantijn/Corentyne River.

Both Presidents were accompanied by their respective Ministers of Foreign Affairs, of
Finance and of Public Works, who over the past months have engaged in intensive
consultations regarding the technical and financial aspects of this initiative.

Following this process of internal and bilateral consultations between Guyana and
Suriname and the recommendations received, careful consideration was given to the
proposed way forward, taking into account political, domestic and international elements
as well.

Both Presidents reaffirmed the importance of this fixed connection between their two
neighboring countries in the broader context of South American connectivity, as part of
the overall objective of regional integration and trilateral cooperation between Suriname,
Guyana and Brazil.

Presidents Santokhi and Ali welcomed the expressions of satisfaction of the President of
the Federative Republic of Brazil, H.E. Luis Ignacio Lula da Silva, during the recently held
trilateral summit in Guyana with regard to the earmarked bridge over the
Corantijn/Corentyne River.

From a bilateral perspective, the Presidents of Suriname and Guyana acknowledged the
importance of the historical and friendly relations between the peoples and governments
of both countries. It was further recognized that at the current time, both countries stand
on the verge of becoming major players in terms of energy and food security in this region.

The building of the fixed connection between the two neighboring nations will
undoubtedly enhance the flow of people, strengthen agricultural cooperation, facilitate
trade and investment and promote tourism, thereby adding in a diversified way to the
economic growth that is expected to provide sustainable prosperity to both the
Surinamese and Guyanese populations.

The Presidents instructed the responsible team of Ministers to enter the next stage of this
project by engaging in discussions in relation to terms of pricing, technical aspects,
financing and operational modalities with the shared objective of optimizing on
affordability and concessionality.

Experts of both countries will also jointly work towards a political and legal framework,
start the supervisory tendering process, and drafting of the agreement regarding the
ultimate board that will jointly manage the bridge.

Clear timelines for finalization of these activities have been set. The mentioned team of
three ministers on each side will continue their work to lead these negotiations and data
gathering, as well as monitor the progress and report regularly to the Heads of State of
both Governments.

President Santokhi and President Ali agreed to convene the Strategic Dialogue and
Cooperation Platform (SDCP) in early May 2024 to broaden the consultations to include
other pending relevant areas of strategic importance on the agenda between the two