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Norway Deposits US 40M into Fund to Save Guyana’s Rainforest

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Norway has announced that US 40 million dollars will be deposited into a fund it has set up with Guyana to save the rainforest. US30 million dollars was previously deposited into the fund, which is being managed by the World Bank. However, none of the money has yet trickled down to Guyana. Formal project proposals have to first be submitted and approved if any of the money is to be released.

The announcement of the 2011 tranche of funds was made after Norway applauded Guyana for keeping within the limits of deforestation. Guyana can continue to cut down its forest as along it does not exceed the reference level of 0.275 percent.

A joint press conference was held with Norway’s Environment and International Development Minister, Erik Solheim and President Bharrat Jagdeo Thursday evening at state house where the announcement was made.

Stolheim said his country will not determine how Guyana should spend the money but stressed that Norway is concern about issues surrounding corruption and believes with anti-corruption mechanisms being enforced this will ensure that the funds are managed properly.

The minister pointed out that Guyana’s model for a low carbon environment may not be perfect but it is a work in progress. He said that Norway is committed towards supporting Guyana’s development while protecting the environment.

President Bharrat Jagdeo also agreed that the model has a few flaws. He stated that there would be parliamentary oversight over the management of the funds. Jagdeo also said that there would be public tenders both locally and internationally for certain projects.

Guyana stands to receive a total of US 250 Million Dollar form Norway by 2015.

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