A number of Brazilian investors, under the umbrella of PanAmazonia, are currently in Guyana, exploring various opportunities for investments, and holding meetings with members of the Private Sector Commission (PSC).
According to correspondence from the Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA), seen by this publication, the group met with the PSC and various businesses on Wednesday at the Herdmanston Lodge during a morning and afternoon session.
It was explained that PanAmazonia is a non-governmental organisation (NGO) with headquarters in Manaus Amazonas, and is made up of over one hundred of the most reputable and respected associations from Brazil, Colombia, Bolivia, Peru, Venezuela, Suriname, French Guiana, Ecuador, and now Guyana.
“The group believes it will be an excellent opportunity to promote Guyana, Guyanese businesses, and Guyanese products to the Brazilian and PanAmazonian markets,” GMSA explained. “The main purpose of this visit is to allow the Guyanese Private Sector and the Brazilian Private Sector to engage in meaningful face-to-face discussions to identify potential business and investment opportunities and to find ways to work in collaborative efforts towards growth and social/economic development in Guyana, Brazil and the Pan Amazonian Region.”
According to GMSA, the delegation is seeking information on the current development agenda of the Government, in order to be assured that Guyana is a good place for their investments. There are a number of sectors that the delegation is interested in, ranging from industry and commerce, wood, ores, construction, tourism, engineering, telecommunications, oil and gas, and agriculture.
The manufacture of ceramic blocks, renewable energy, waste processing, mining and the export of food and beverages are also areas of interest to the investors.
Brazilian investors are already involved in the cultivation of 115 acres of soya bean and a five-acre corn pilot project in Ebini, Upper Berbice River, where harvesting started last year. The project is a joint venture between various local and foreign investors – aimed at proving all raw materials for the production of livestock and poultry feed for the local sector.
The initiative is being developed by a consortium of investors that includes the owners of Guyana Stock Feed Ltd, Royal Chicken, Edun Farms, SBM Wood, Dubulay Ranch, and Bounty Farm Ltd, along with the Brazilian-owned NF Agriculture.
The Government plans for Guyana to be a net exporter of soya bean in the next five years. With Guyana spending close to US$25 million annually on proteins just for the poultry sector, the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Government, since taking office, has taken steps to promote domestic cultivation of grains like corn and soya bean.
Government, in its 2020 Emergency Budget, removed Value-Added Tax (VAT) on agricultural machinery, fertilisers, agrochemicals and pesticides, making it more feasible for such investments.
Additionally, the Government has reversed land lease fees across all sectors, and reverted water charges back to 2014 rates. And President Dr Irfaan Ali has repeatedly said that, in the next four years, Guyana, via the cultivation of more diversified crops, would be aiming to reduce the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) food import bill by 25 per cent.