Georgetown – With wheat prices peaking at record highs globally, President Irfaan Ali says his government is exploring the possibility of sourcing a variety of wheat for local production.
“Soon we are going to work to see whether we can find a variety of wheat that we can plant in Guyana so that we can fulfill even our local requirement,” Ali said. “
We are learning important lessons now that we must not leave unanswered for future generations.”
The surge in wheat and other commodity prices is a result of the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine which both account for about 30 per cent of the world’s traded wheat.
Ali lamented that both the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine conflict have led to supply chain disruption, which has major economic implications.
The pandemic in some instances resulted in the cost of goods and services increasing by 20 to 145 per cent, while the cost of shipping and logistics has gone up by as much as 200 per cent.
The war in Ukraine has taken out close to 40 per cent of global wheat production, and the price of oil has surged.
Notwithstanding these challenges, President Ali said the government is unwavering in its quest to build a Guyana that is resilient.
“We have started to present leadership on our next big crisis, food security . . . . The world has taught us that we can no longer be dependent, we have to be as self-sufficient and self-sustainable as possible, especially when it comes to the supply of food and basic commodities,” he noted.
He said citizens must understand the complexities of the environment under which the government is operating, and pointed out that even amid the challenges, the government has been able to keep all public servants employed, expand employment opportunities, provide increases in salaries and pension, and provide incentives for more students. (CMC)