By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] –President David Granger will be lobbying assiduously for the support of CARICOM against aggressions by neighbouring Venezuela at the Thirty-Sixth Summit Heads of State that will be held July 2-4, 2015, in Bridgetown, Barbados.
Minister of State Joseph Harmon told reporters on Wednesday July 1, that over the last weeks efforts have been intensified to prepare a “compendium of articles” for the President’s visit to Barbados.
He noted that the compendium of articles for a book dubbed CARICOM Geopolitics, will be given to each Head of State as Guyana looks to solidify CARICOM’s support in defence of Guyana’s sovereign territory.
“We are working tirelessly to ensure that our case is well made and every individual will have access to our case as we speak… our claim is valid and meant to be supported by all CARICOM states,” the Minister of State asserted.
It was noted that one of the key points in President Granger’s address would be to point out that tensions between Guyana and Venezuela would not bode well for the CARICOM region as a whole.
“The Caribbean must be a zone of peace; therefore a threat by Venezuela to Guyana is a threat to all of CARICOM,” he stated.
The Minister told reporters that following the meetings, the Guyana Government would expect a statement of support coming from the CARICOM body.
A high-level strategic dialogue between the CARICOM heads of Government and Ban Ki-Moon, United Nations Secretary General, is expected to precede the conference in the morning of Thursday July 2.
Pointing to the PetroCaribe agreement, Harmon noted that PetroCaribe is a “powerful instrument, so therefore you cannot expect total conformity.”
PetroCaribe is intended to promote trade amongst member countries, and Guyana has been supplying rice to Venezuela under the initiative. Under the current trade agreement, Guyana is expected to supply 210,000 tons of paddy and polished rice annually to Venezuela. The value of this supply amounts to US$130 million