Head of the Presidential Secretariat (HPS), Dr Roger Luncheon, at a post-Cabinet media briefing at the Office of the President on Wednesday praised President Bharrat Jagdeo for playing a pivotal role in resolving the REDJet issue, particularly because of its beneficial impact on Guyanese travellers.
He noted, “the current dispensation has Guyanese travellers paying as much to get to Trinidad as Trinidad travellers are paying to get to New York, a situation that is very perverse.”
Apart from the services of REDJet, the other option to ease the burden of high airfares on Guyanese will see either more flights being brought into the country or the creation of a Guyanese international carrier.
The government’s concerns as it relates to freedom of movement recently saw the passage of amendments to the Caribbean Community (Free Entry of Skilled Nationals) Bill, which regulated the way in which skilled Guyanese who migrate are treated in a foreign country.
That piece of legislation is representative of additional steps taken by the government, to meet the required obligations under the revised Treaty of Chaguaramas, particularly free movement of skilled people.
Luncheon said, however, that this initiative will have to be reciprocated by participating states to allow for free movement and acceptance of Guyanese nationals to their countries.
“That to us is also emblematic of the heightened regional integration efforts… we have national interests that we have pursued but we don’t think that those interests in regional integration are just peculiarly Guyanese, all of the other participating States are likely beneficiaries,” he said.
Meanwhile, talks are ongoing between Guyana and the new Transport Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Devant Maharaj, with regard to setting up an in transit lounge for Guyanese. This should ease the hassles that Guyanese travellers face when in transit at the Piarco International Airport while en route to other destinations.
RedJet will commence flying from Barbados to Trinidad and Trinidad to Georgetown, by September latest, as certain formalities have to be processed.