Commercial Website to aid Guyana-U.S. trade
by Robert Bazil
February 4, 2000
THE United States Embassy yesterday launched a Commercial Website to facilitate bilateral trade between Guyana and the U.S.
The website is intended to be a one-stop shopping centre for e-commerce and business-related and investment information.
United States Ambassador to Guyana, Mr James Mack told reporters at the Embassy yesterday that the website (http://us-guyanabusinessctr.com/) contains links both to business-related websites in the U.S. and Guyana. Business people will benefit greatly from this facility, he predicted.
Mack noted that persons visiting the new website will discover complete electronic access to the U.S. economy, which is the largest importer and exporter in the world, as well as the largest supplier of investment capital and technology.
"All this is possible through our new website...the service is open to anyone anywhere in the world at any time of the day," he said.
"We at the U.S. Embassy in Georgetown have always seen as one of our key roles, the providing of business information and facilitating trade and investment...that is why a year ago we renamed our Commercial section the Business Facilitation Center.
"...We want to facilitate; to make easier business transactions between the U.S. and Guyana...we believe strongly that in doing this, everybody - Guyanese and Americans - wins," Ambassador Mack told reporters.
He indicated that now the Embassy is taking a major step forward in the services it offers by establishing a separate Internet website that is especially designed for, and dedicated to the facilitation of business.
Ambassador Mack said that until recently, this kind of information; this capability to take business actions - to buy, sell and transmit and receive capital and technology - was a luxury available only to the more developed countries, to large companies and to the very wealthy.
"This has changed...this capability is now available to anybody with access to the Internet," he said, adding that this aspect of globalisation has levelled the playing field for the little guy and for small countries like Guyana.
The envoy emphasised that anyone with Internet access can access any site without leaving his or her house - anywhere on earth.
He explained that many people fear the word `globalisation' and some think of a picture of an evil international monster ready to gobble up the small and the weak - a creature that must be resisted at all costs.
"But the reality is quite the opposite and we will demonstrate that reality today...it is true that globalisation is a power phenomenon, international in scope and is definitely changing the way that we live and work, but it is not evil."
"...It offers potential to bring progress to all who embrace it rather than turn their backs on it," he added.
Mack stated that one of the many benefits of globalisation has been the enormous advance in telecommunications.
"Our capacity to transmit and receive huge amounts of information almost instantaneously is revolutionising the way business is being conducted around the world," he said.
He observed that, now, through the Internet, people can obtain and transmit enormous amounts of information about products as well as the people and companies that are offering them.
They can participate in a worldwide auction of almost any good or service imaginable and can easily seek the best prices of the goods and services they want, Mack added.
According to the Ambassador, people can buy and receive loans, send and receive capital, follow any stock market in the world, buy stock online, seek "out" business and research investment opportunities - almost instantaneously.
And, by cutting out the middleman, they can in many cases, do all this more cheaply.
Ms Trudy Wong-You, who is in charge of the Business Facilitation Center, demonstrated how business people and other persons can source goods in the U.S., seek potential business partners and advertise their goods for export to the U.S.
She pointed out that the website was established to further facilitate trade between the U.S. and Guyana and to promote better business links.
Wong-You explained how persons using the new website can source or purchase U.S. products from their homes in Guyana.
Users can access manufacturers, importers, exporters, the U.S. yellow pages and other sites.