‘Don’t sign accord with Trinidad unless trade barriers are removed’- Georgetown Chamber

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 May 2022, 22:49 by Denis Chabrol

Timothy Tucker

The Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GGCI) on Wednesday urged the Guyana g0vernment not to sign a memorandum of understanding with Trinidad and Tobago unless that twin-island nation removes a series of non-tariff barriers.

Up to late Wednesday, GCCI President Timothy Tucker said the Guyana government did not inform him whether it would heed the business organisation’s call not to ink the accord.

He said Trinidad and Tobago must first remove barriers to Guyana’s meat, fruit, vegetables, eddoes, plantains and honey. “The concerns we have are that there is a number of trade barriers that are there that Trinidad has put in place as it relates to Guyana,” he said.

Asked what he would tell the Trinidad and Tobago government as well as ordinary nationals of that country who would seek to justify the need to protect their country, he said the evidence was clear that Guyana was being discriminated against. “Those phytosanitary measures: We know they are non-tariff barriers. They are not the same phytosanitary levels that you have in other CARICOM countries.

Mr. Tucker listed said Trinidad and Tobago was even encouraging Guyana to violate the Montreal Protocol that calls for signatory countries to phase out the use of methyl bromide for the fumigation of some produce before export.

The GCCI said there was no “fair trade” as Trinidad and Tobago’s goods and personnel do not face any restrictions in Guyana  while this country’s products and produce are being barred from entering that country.

The GCCI says it has learned that the Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago governments would be signing an accord for cooperation in the areas of agriculture, energy and national security.