GUYANA: Govt developing diaspora database to match skills with labour market


Foreign Secretary of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Robert Persaud, said the ministry is developing a diaspora database that will match the skills of Guyanese abroad to the needs of the job market locally.

Persaud was speaking at the four-day International Energy Conference and Expo at the Marriott Hotel, Kingston, Georgetown on Wednesday  February 16, 2022.

PHOTO: Foreign Secretary of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Robert Persaud making his presentation.


He said the project would be consistent with the Transfer of Knowledge through Expatriate Nationals (TOKTEN) programme being utilised by other countries around the world.

According to the IOM’s Labour Migration Study, it is estimated that Guyana will need approximately 160,000 workers to supplement its labour supply in the long- run, with at least a minimum of 100,000 workers to realise its full growth potential.

It is for this reason, Persaud said, the Government of Guyana is working toward ensuring that these gaps are filled through the development and execution of the pilot project.

Additionally, in the long – term, he announced that the administration is working towards the development of a structured migration policy which will be informed by evidence-based analysis.

The projects forms part of several initiatives being worked on by the government to connect the global diaspora and streamline their involvement in investment and development opportunities and utilise their skills and expertise for the betterment of Guyana.

“The global Guyanese diaspora has always maintained a strong connection with their homeland. Many of them feel a strong sense of belonging and have a great desire to contribute to the development and transformation of our country,” he said.

Persaud said that while substantial data about the Guyanese diaspora is not readily available, Guyanese abroad, when coupled with their offspring who may or may not be citizens of Guyana, could equally or be even greater than the number of Guyanese living in Guyana; therefore, the potential in the Guyanese diaspora is vast.

“Our overseas-based Guyanese have acquired skills and have made key and invaluable connections over the years in their countries of residence which can be utilised to create beneficial partnerships and opportunities for Guyana. Many of these reside in nations which have been significant producers of oil and gas and as a result, possess a vast knowledge in this nascent sector for Guyana,” he pointed out.

With this in mind, the government has been intensifying efforts and embarking on aggressive strategies and policies to revitalise, deepen and sustain diaspora engagement in order to leverage the expertise, talents and investment potential that reside within that population.

To date, several initiatives have been undertaken, geared at enhancing engagements with the diaspora. Last year, the first-ever virtual diaspora conference was held, attracting hundreds of Guyanese from over 70 countries.

Persaud said several measures have since been put in place to promote a business-friendly environment and improve the ease of doing business, some of which include the improvement of platforms for persons to access information readily.

As a result, the government received many expressions of interest from the diaspora for projects in agriculture, technology, health, solid waste management, ship building, renewable energy, community development, sports, tourism, education, security, oil and gas, and financial and social services. In fact, the diaspora youth launched a telecommunication center in Linden, Region Ten last year, bringing jobs and opportunities to other young people in that region.

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  • theonly  On 02/17/2022 at 8:00 pm

    Every effort should be made for the locals here in Guyana to get opportunities first then anyone else.

    • Emily  On 02/18/2022 at 8:19 am

      Donald Trump should have deported Guyanese who think that way rather than the Mexicans and Haitians.
      Good luck being the Equatorial Guinea of Latin America.

  • Dennis Albert  On 02/19/2022 at 11:25 pm

    Will the Diaspora accept the low wages?
    Remember that Venezuelans, Chinese and Filipinos will work for lower wages, though I prefer the Latino people rather than the clannish Asians.
    Guyanese tell me that the Chinese and Filipinos are heavily concentrated in the blue collar sector that the Filipinos are their own elite class in countries like Canada.

  • Jaipersaud  On 02/20/2022 at 5:48 am

    The children born from Guyanese parents living abroad are not real Guyanese. They are Americans. They don’t belong here. They are foreigners.

    They did not stay in Guyana or ever lived here. We should not be allowing these Americans and foreigners to settle in our country. Guyanese first!

    We are heading to become one of the wealthiest countries per capita at the top 5 oil reserves in the world.

    Therefore, We will have to implement a strict closed borders policy to protect Guyanese from losing our jobs and livelihoods to these foreigners.

    • Dennis Albert  On 02/21/2022 at 8:07 pm

      This isn’t a rum shop of uneducated cane cutters. Be civil.

    • Emily  On 02/23/2022 at 10:39 am

      Guyanese continue to come to the shores of the US of America and Canada malnourished, psychologically scarred from child abuse and domestic violence, costing the American taxpayer money.

  • Lear Matthews  On 02/20/2022 at 7:25 am

    Indeed an encouraging proposal relating to diaspora engagement, although similar to bold announcements have been made by previous administrations. However, how will the data posted on the website be protected?

    • Dennis Albert  On 02/20/2022 at 12:21 pm

      That’s a job waiting to be filled by hiring an IT cybersecurity expert. The question is whether someone in the USA earning at least US$100,000 a year doing that job will fly over here to work for G$100,000 a month doing the same job.
      Real estate prices are insane here these days; you could buy a house in Florida cheaper!

  • wally n  On 02/26/2022 at 2:53 pm

    Ontario Premier Doug Ford said he will introduce legislation to expedite the process for professionals seeking certification in the province in an attempt to ease the strain on the labour market, especially in the skilled trades. ….
    SLIPPERY SLOPE Government has to pay close attention.

    • Dennis Albert  On 02/26/2022 at 7:04 pm

      What does Canada immigration policy of bringing in millions of desperate Asian nationals have to do with remigrants investing in Guyana?
      It’s insulting.

  • Emily  On 02/28/2022 at 8:34 am

    While many of you Guyanese condemn us in America and are reluctant to be inclusive of returning Guyanese-Americans, the national newspapers in Guyana reported that Chinese investors have a huge stake in almost every industry in Guyana.

    The infamous VICE reporter opened a can of worms and the most Guyanese can do is badmouth the Diaspora while paying extortionate rents to the Chinese landlord in Demerara.

  • Emily  On 02/28/2022 at 8:39 am

    Guyanese living on welfare in New York live a comfortable life than working for a pittance that you call a wage in Guyana.

    Enjoy your 20 billion barrels of oil pollution, corruption and oil price inflation! You must be drinking the crude oil to speak crudely of us in America. We don’t drive down wages. We have some of the highest wages in the world. How much does Guyana pay? $2 an hour or something like that?

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