Foreign relations of Guyana

This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Guyana

After independence in 1966, Guyana sought an influential role in international affairs, particularly among Third World and non-aligned nations. It served twice on the UN Security Council (1975–76 and 1982–83). Former Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister, and Attorney General Mohamed Shahabuddeen served a 9-year term on the International Court of Justice (1987–96).

Guyana has diplomatic relations with a wide range of nations, and these managed primarily through its Georgetown.

Guyana strongly supports the concept of regional integration. It played an important role in the founding of the U.S. law enforcement agencies on counter-narcotics efforts.

Two neighbours have longstanding territorial disputes with Guyana. Since the 19th century, Venezuela has claimed all of Guyana west of the Essequibo River — 62% of Guyana's territory. At a meeting in Geneva in 1966, the two countries agreed to receive recommendations from a representative of the UN Secretary General on ways to settle the dispute peacefully. Diplomatic contacts between the two countries and the Secretary General's representative continue. Neighbouring Suriname also claims the territory east of Guyana's New River, a largely uninhabited area of some 15,000 square kilometres (5,800 sq mi) in southeast Guyana. Guyana and Suriname also disputed their offshore maritime boundaries. This dispute flared up in June 2000 in response to an effort by a Canadian company to drill for oil under a Guyanese concession. Guyana regards its legal title to all of its territory as sound. However, the dispute with Suriname was arbitrated by the United Nations Convention on Law of the Sea and a ruling in favor of Guyana was announced in September, 2007.[1][2][3]

Guyana is also a member of the International Criminal Court with a Bilateral Immunity Agreement of protection for the US-military (as covered under Article 98).

Disputes - international

All of the area west of the Essequibo River claimed by Venezuela; Suriname claims area east of the New Upper Courantyne.

Illicit drugs

Transshipment point for narcotics from South America - primarily Venezuela - to Europe and the United States; producer of cannabis.

Relations by country

Country Formal Relations Began Notes
 Barbados See Barbados–Guyana relations The relations between Guyana and Barbados had its genesis to a time when both Guyana (then British Guiana) and Barbados were both British colonies. Shortly after Great Britain secured British Guiana from the Dutch, waves of migrants were encouraged to move and settle in Guyana. Barbados was one such location where large numbers of migrants came from. Through time Barbados and Guyana have both supported each other. With the move towards independence in the region Guyana was seen as the breadbasket of the wider Caribbean which lead to yet more waves of Barbadians seeking to move to Guyana for better opportunities. Relations have been rocky, during the 1990s, immigration became contentious for Guyanese persons to Barbados. Such terms as the "Guyanese bench" in the immigration area of the Barbados Sir Grantley Adams International Airport have tested both states at times. The two nations continue their cooperation through the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and work towards building and maintaining good relations between their nationals. Both nations also attempt to maintain open communications at high levels of both Governments. More recently the Guyanese Government has extended an offer to Barbadians.[4][5] The Guyanese government has offered to put in place an economically favourable regime towards any Barbadians that wish to relocate to Guyana and contribute towards that nation's goals in agricultural investment.[6] The announcement was made in the final days of the Owen Arthur administration by MP member Mia Motley. In the early 1990s the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Patrick Manning pitched an initiative for Barbados, Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago to enter into some form of political union or political association. This initiative was short lived and didn't proceed following the Democratic Labour Party's defeat during the 1994 elections.
 Brazil See Brazil–Guyana relations Brazil–Guyana relations have traditionally been close. Brazil has provided military assistance to Guyana in the form of war fare training and logistics. Bilateral relations between the countries have recently increased, as a result of Brazil's new South-South foreign policy aimed to strengthen South American integration. During a state visit by Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to Georgetown in 2 March 2007, the governments of Guyana and Brazil signed several cooperation agreements and announced plans to boost trade between the two countries.
 Canada Canada started relations with Guyana in 1964 with the construction of the Commission of Canada in Georgetown. In 1966 it became a Canadian High Commission. There is a Guyanese High Commission in Ottawa and a Guyanese Consulate in Toronto. Canada and Guyana have strong ties through the Commonwealth of Nations. There is an estimated 200,000 Guyanese living in Canada. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Guyanese police work closely to help with drug, and human smuggling.
  • Canada-Guyana relations
  • Fact Sheet
  • Guyana's population at risk
  • Guyana’s exports to Canada enjoyed mixed blessings in last five years
 India See Indian Premier League, many Guyanese players were contracted to play in India.[7]
 Mexico 1 March 1973 See Guyana–Mexico relations
 Palestine Guyana recognised the independence of the State of Palestine on 13 January 2011.[10] On that very same day, Guyana and Palestine both established formal diplomatic relations.[11]
 United Kingdom
  • Guyana has a high commission in London.[12]
  • United Kingdom has a high commission in Georgetown.[13]
 United States See Guyana–United States relations U.S. policy toward The Co-operative Republic of Guyana seeks to develop robust, sustainable democratic institutions, laws, and political practices; support economic growth and development; and promote stability and security. During the last years of his administration, President Hoyte sought to improve relations with the United States as part of a decision to move his country toward genuine political nonalignment. Relations also were improved by Hoyte's efforts to respect human rights, invite international observers for the 1992 elections, and reform electoral laws. The United States also welcomed the Hoyte government's economic reform and efforts, which stimulated investment and growth. The 1992 democratic elections and Guyana's reaffirmation of sound economic policies and respect for human rights have placed U.S.-Guyanese relations on an excellent footing. Under successive PPP governments, the United States and Guyana continued to improve relations. President Cheddi Jagan was committed to democracy, adopted more free market policies, and pursued sustainable development for Guyana's environment. President Jagdeo is continuing on that course, and United States maintains positive relations with the current government.
 Venezuela See Port-of-Spain. In 1981, Venezuela refused to renew the protocol. However, with changes to the governments of both countries relations improved, to the extent that in 1990 Venezuela sponsored Guyana's bid for OAS membership in 1990.[15][16]

See also

References and notes

  1. ^ Welcome to guyanachronicle.com
  2. ^ Guyana to experience ‘massive' oil exploration this year
  3. ^ Business: News in the Caribbean - Caribbean360.com
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ [2]
  6. ^ [3]
  7. ^ a b c Indian High Commission Guyana
  8. ^ Non-resident ambassador of Guyana presents letter of accreditation to the President of Mexico (in Spanish)
  9. ^ Embassy of Mexico in Georgetown (in English and Spanish)
  10. ^ Government of Guyana (13 January 2011). "Statement by the Government of Guyana in Recognition of the State of Palestine". Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Retrieved 2011-01-14.  "The Government of Guyana has today decided to formally recognize the State of Palestine as a free, independent, and sovereign state, based on its 1967 borders."
  11. ^ "Guyana recognizes a Palestinian state". The Washington Post. The Associated Press. 13 January 2011. Retrieved 2011-01-14. 
  12. ^ High Commission of Guyana in London
  13. ^ High Commission of the United Kingdom in Georgetown
  14. ^ Embassy of the United States in Georgetown
  15. ^ "Relations with Venezuela". U.S. Library of Congress. Retrieved 2009-06-09. 
  16. ^ "The Trail Of Diplomacy". Guyana News and Information. Retrieved 2009-06-09. 
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