Int’l banks urged to set up in Guyana as opportunities for investments expand

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana
Finance Minister Dr Ashni Singh at the Energy Conference

Finance Minister Dr Ashni Singh has issued a call for international banks to set up operations in Guyana.

He was at the time speaking at the third day of the Guyana Energy Conference and Supply Chain Expo being hosted at the Marriott Hotel, Georgetown.

According to him, numerous projects are unfolding across Guyana as the country positions itself as a powerhouse in a number of industries, and as such, called on regional and international banks to build branches in Guyana.

“Many of our domestic banks are relatively small and have still relatively modest balance sheet…They have been responding (to the financing needs) but there is a limit beyond which they are challenged to respond…So, there is an opportunity for international banks to do business in Guyana,” the finance minister said.

Foreign banking interest is not non-existent, according to Dr. Singh. The multilateral financing institutions like the World Bank and the Inter-American Development (IDB) Bank are among those supporting projects in Guyana.

IDB Invest, which works with the region’s private sector, is an example of a foreign bank helping to fund private sector-led projects in Guyana.

Dr. Singh said there are other opportunities for both regional and international banks to come to Guyana and support the private sector, particularly those with clearly “bankable” projects.

“Guyana could easily and obviously be considered to be the regional hub for whatever investments you might be considering, whatever commercial or business operations you might be considering to locate in Guyana… In many cases, some of these companies have contracts with Exxon or with Exxon Tier one contractors so they are very bankable prospects,” Dr. Singh explained.

Late last year, it was reported that the government was in talks at least two major United States-based commercial banks on expanding their services here.

The two banks in question are Bank of America and Citibank.