Guyana qualifies for initial US$30M payout under Norway forests pact
Guyana hopes to conclude discussions with the World Bank and Norway in February to receive an initial US$30M through the forest preservation agreement with Oslo.
“We have complied with all of the conditions for last year. The only outstanding thing now is the settlement of the trust fund mechanism through which the money will flow to Guyana,” President Bharrat Jagdeo told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday.
He noted that Guyana is already eligible for the US$30M and hopes to conclude ongoing discussions in February. This will be reflected in this year’s budget, said Jagdeo.
Guyana and Norway in November inked a Memorandum of Understanding agreeing that Oslo would pay US$30 million ($6.2 billion) this year and potentially up to a total of US$250 million ($51.7 billion) by 2015 for this country to preserve its forests. Under the partnership, Guyana will accelerate its efforts to limit forest-based greenhouse gas emissions and protect its rainforest as an asset for the world. Norway will provide financial support to Guyana at a level based on this country’s success in limiting emissions. This will enable Guyana to start implementing its Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) at scale.
However, before any money is disbursed Guyana was to have done several things including taking formal steps to establish independent forest monitoring by a credible, independent entity. Additionally, Guyana had to show evidence of entering a formal dialogue with the European Union with the intent of joining its Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) processes towards a Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA). Government also has to show evidence of its decision to enter a formal dialogue with the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) or an alternative mechanism agreed by Guyana and Norway to further the same aim as EITI. There were other requirements.