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"The Russian Federation and the Co-operative Republic of Guyana have achieved a good level of mutual understanding and practical interaction on the world arena," the Russian envoy said as he presented his letters of credence to acting President Sam Hinds at the Office of the President.
He said this was based on the "community and similarity of positions and approaches to the solution to key problems of (today), such as democratisation of international relations, (the) fight against international terrorism and separatism, enhancement of strategic stability, international and regional security, eradication of poverty and destitution."
Ambassador Starikov said he has started his mission in Guyana when the traditional vision of the world is free from stereotypes and is refocussing on new problems.
"Preconditions are being set by the international community for developing a really equitable system of international relations and enhancing interaction with a view to building a multi-polar world order. Russia and Guyana take the most active part in these endeavours, and are partners in this process," he said.
Starikov also stressed that Latin America and the Caribbean region have always been in the focus of Russia's interests and now relations with the countries of the region and cooperation with regional political and integrational association present an important substantive line of Russian foreign policies.
"We note with satisfaction the positive tendency in mutual efforts made to intensify Guyanese-Russian relations, to develop and improve bilateral relationships based on international treaties and law. We stand ready to seek together areas and mechanisms of cooperation in the trade and economic, humanitarian, military and technological and other fields in order to make the best of the potential of both the Republic of Guyana and the Russian Federation for mutually beneficial collaboration," the Russian envoy assured.
He said he would do his best "to encourage to the limit further all-round development of Guyanese-Russian relations, and serve the utmost aim of strengthening the friendship between our countries and peoples."
He also noted that the two countries would this year celebrate the 32nd anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations.
Mr. Hinds in his response noted that the milestone in relations between Guyana and Russia, to which Ambassador Starikov referred, was indeed important and significant.
"Since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1970, our two countries have developed close ties and have benefited from mutual forms of cooperation and collaboration at all levels," he said.
"As members of the United Nations, our two countries continue to cooperate on many global issues that affect both developed and developing countries (and) it is my hope that we can continue to work together to advance the cause for international peace and security, the maintenance and strengthening of the principles of democracy, adherence to the rule of law and the promotion of sustainable development," Mr. Hinds said.
The Guyana Government, he said, remains committed to regional integration and in this context, has made determined efforts to fullfill its obligations to the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and to participate fully in the activities aimed at bringing the countries of the Caribbean closer.
The development of stronger ties with the countries of Latin America also remains a high priority of the regional outreach policy of the Guyana Government, he said.
"We therefore note with much enthusiasm the progressive expansion of Russia's relations with Latin American and the Caribbean region," he said.
Mr. Hinds also told the Russian envoy that during his tenure in Guyana, he will notice the conscious efforts of the Government to promote economic and social development despite the many challenges facing Guyana as a developing nation.
He noted that the Government's primary focus is to provide satisfactory living standards for all Guyanese, the reduction of poverty, the elimination of crime and criminal activities and creating and sustaining a climate conducive to peace and harmony and steady economic growth.
Mr. Hinds also pointed out that over the years, Russia has provided valuable technical assistance and contributed significantly to Guyana's nation building process, particularly in the development of its human resources.
"I take this opportunity to express the sincere gratitude of the Government and people of Guyana to the Government and people of Russia (and) I bid you a warm welcome to Guyana and wish you a successful and rewarding tour of duty as Ambassador of Russia to Guyana," Mr. Hinds told the new Russian Ambassador. (MARK RAMOTAR)