Guyana’s inaugural Green Expo and International Small Business Summit was held in Georgetown from the 18th – 21st October 2018. The event, held under the theme Sustainable economic growth through small business innovation, entrepreneurship and transformative government policies was made possible through the collaborative efforts of the Ministry of the Presidency, UN Environment, Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE), IDB, the African Business Round-table, and the Small Business Bureau of the Ministry of Business.
PAGE participated at both events and took the opportunity to enhance public awareness on the Guyana Green State Development Strategy: Vision 2040 and PAGE’s work in the country. UN Environment and the Department of Environment presented the first draft of the Strategy to the Government of Guyana International Small Business Summit.
The Green Business Expo provided small-scale entrepreneurs with an opportunity to showcase their green and innovative products. Patrons also had an opportunity to find out more about PAGE’s work in Guyana, including the macroeconomic modelling and green industry assessments undertaken to inform the elaboration and support the implementation of the Green State Development Strategy Vision 2040. The significance of intermingling policy and small business was clear: entrepreneurs cannot make the shift to becoming competitive, green and social enterprises without a supportive financial, legal, regulatory and technical environment.
Throughout the summit and expo you will see evidence of how small business are innovating in Guyana today, and the success of Government efforts to support them. Public initiatives like the small business procurement program, the assistance offered by the Small Business Bureau, and the small business tax procedures, all strengthen the enabling environment and help small businesses thrive.
Leo Heileman, Director of the Department of the Environment, Guyana
At the International Small Business Summit, the connection between small business and green economy was also in focus. In his keynote address, Winston Jordon, the Minister of Finance, noted that small and medium-sized businesses have a vital role to play in the transformation of Guyana into a green economy. The Summit provided the platform for experts, entrepreneurs, academia, politicians and the other representatives from 16 countries to exchange information and experiences in green economy initiatives.