Remarks by Ambassador Dr. Odeen Ishmael of Guyana at the signing of the agreement between Green Mining and the Government of Guyana at OPIC Headquarters Washington DC, JULY 28, 2000

Posted July 29th. 2000

Mr.Kirk Robertson, Executive Vice President of Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC),
Mr. Dale Martin and
Ms. Lucy Reed, attorney representing Green Mining,
Ms. Janis Brennan, attorney representing the Government of Guyana

Today is one of great satisfaction for the Government of Guyana. The restoration of OPIC support for U.S. investments in Guyana is an important milestone in Guyana's efforts to achieve economic development. Our Government welcomes U.S. investors to Guyana and believes that OPIC's confidence in the stability and viability of the Guyana political and economic climate will greatly enhance our ability to attract U.S. investment.

Investment is a cornerstone of Guyana's economic development, and our Government is committed to working cooperatively with U.S. investors and OPIC in future projects that will contribute to the diversification and growth of Guyana's economy. It is our hope that we will have increasing opportunities to show U.S. investors the enormous economic potential of doing business in Guyana, both for domestic consumption and for export, and to demonstrate anew the Government's commitment to free market principles and the rule of law.

My Government especially appreciates the support of OPIC President George Munoz and many others at OPIC and in the U.S. Government, including former U.S. Ambassador to Guyana James Mack, for a settlement between Green Mining and the Government of Guyana that would, in turn, result in a settlement between OPIC and Green. Their support for this mutual settlement has been crucial in bringing it to this positive and decisive stage.

I also thank Green Mining and its attorneys, Dale Martin and Lucy Reed, for the cooperative way in which they have worked with us and our attorneys, Foley, Hoag & Eliot, in achieving settlement. This was a dispute that my Government inherited from a former Government, and we would never have wished for it to have happened. It is of note that no similar disputes have arisen since the current administration in Guyana came to office in 1992, and we are pleased that matters have been settled between Green and ourselves.

The Guyana Government is dedicated to honoring its commitments to those who do business in Guyana, and we look forward to renewed and increasing cooperation with OPIC and with U.S. investors in our country.

Thank you.

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