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What country can you visit, that is light years ahead of everyone else when it comes to diversity and inclusion?
What’s the only country in South America where the official language is English?
Where’s the only country in South America that is discovering oil at an unprecedented rate setting in on a trajectory to be one of the richest nations on earth?
That’s right…. It’s Guyana.
Guyana, has for centuries, been rich with diversity, inclusion, cultures, races, and religions. The 7 different ethnic groups that make up the region live harmoniously. They celebrate their differing languages, beliefs, and vantage points. It’s a celebration of differences that brings everyone together.
The “Land of Many Waters” is where the word Guyana came from. Waterfalls abound and set the stage for some of the most beautiful rainforest landscapes on earth. It’s no coincidence that Demerara, Essequibo, and Berbice River are the names of three large rivers and are also the names of the three Guyana counties. Guyana is a world of water in all its various forms. Surprisingly, in Guyana you will find the mammoth Kaieteur Falls; the largest single-drop waterfall in the world.
With 80% of the country covered in rainforests, Guyana is an ecotourist’s dream come true. It’s the place for explorers to look for unknown species and for travelers to have untold adventures.
Bordering on Venezuela, oil and gas were bound to happen for Guyana.
Currently, Venezuela holds the world’s record for proven oil reserves. Surpassing Saudi Arabia and Canada means mega-potential. Guyana has an open-for-business policy and will most likely follow its global energy sister, Venezuela in terms of oil payout. We’re predicting a similar oil boom.
Based on Guyana’s geographic proximity to Venezuela, its oil exploration discoveries to date, and the government encouraging economic prosperity climate makes the region a solid bet. It makes this region one of the hottest places in the world to partner, invest, and work.
Unprecedented oil history is making waves in Guyana as we speak. ExxonMobil is discovering offshore oil at unprecedented rates. To date, 20 oil discoveries have been announced and the most recent project was just announced at the Guyana offshore Stabroek Block in September of 2021. And we’ve only just begun.
With coastal plains in the north, mountains in the highlands covered in rainforests, and dusty savannah plateaus in the south, Guyana gas it all. It is an entrepreneur’s dream.
With a long rich history of family members in Guyana and Canada, Ryan Burrowes, CEO of Warehouse Transport Group (WTG), is the bridge between the two regions. No stranger to global opportunities, Ryan’s $multimillion logistics company has an intuitive compass for what’s to come.
“My parents were both born in Guyana and came to Canada in the mid-’70s. My father, Peter, is an environmental engineer who started his career with the Guyana Bauxite company and now 48 years later, specializes in wastewater engineering and sustainability, an underdeveloped service in Guyana at the moment. My mother, Cheryl, has a music management business and both she and my sister have taught music in Guyana and are active in the Guyanese community in Toronto. My brother Andrew also works in the IT side of the business. Its a family affair.” said Ryan.
Bridging regions and building new opportunities has been a lifestyle and a passion for the Burrowes family. It makes perfect sense that they have a family-run freight forwarding and logistics company. “We are a family business. We think about family and community as a way of life. Moving between regions is what we do. With technology and transportation where it is today, the world is our home,” said Ryan.
Ryan’s family lineage is rooted strongly in Guyana. “My great grandfather, Sydney Abdool, started the family in the insurance business more than 100 years ago and we are fortunate enough to have our WTG offices alongside Abdool & Abdool Insurance in Georgetown,” said Ryan.
My grandfather Eddie Fredericks was an icon in the community. He was a legal visionary with a passion for international relations. Eddie was instrumental in the sugar industry, and while CEO of Shell and Consul General for the Netherlands, he also oversaw the earlier drilling days, for oil by Shell, in Guyana. I think he would be happy that I am carrying on this lineage. My other grandfather, Thomas Burrowes worked at the Guyana Tobacco Company for over 45 years, retiring as Managing Director before migrating to Canada. Canada and Guyana have always felt line one and the same,” said Ryan.
As the world digitalizes and globalizes, barriers dissolve and opportunities emerge. With vision and insight, Ryan envisions the future of Guyana and has great expectations.
“Our dream is to build a bridge between Guyana and Canada so that the people who want to do business in both regions can take advantage of that opportunity. Not only will we be moving freight for our clients between the two regions, but we will be forming partnerships and joint ventures to develop stronger infrastructure in the region. Right now, the opportunities are unprecedented. We will be looking for companies to partner with who have the same commitment to family values, community, and business as we do. We are visionaries for Canada and Guyana and are in it for the long game. Since our family motto has always been to help those in need, we are deeply committed to giving back to the Guyanese community,” Ryan explained.
“I am very fortunate to have been exposed to a strong Guyanese heritage from birth. I remember back in my school days, on the last day of school before summer break, most of my friends were going to Florida for vacation and I always received puzzled looks when I said I was going to Guyana. I thought I was different. I didn’t realize it at the time that those family trips were the foundation of my future. I spent summers in Guyana with my grandparents and our relatives and they handed down the Guyanese culture to me. Now its my blended culture,” Ryan recalls.
The beneifit of being a citizen of both Guyana and Canada gives Ryan’s company an extra advantage, “I am extremely proud to be a dual citizen of two amazing countries that have shaped my character and destiny. I formed WTG Guyana Inc, a Guyanese company, to identify where our services can be helpful to the Guyanese economy and share the remarkable links between the two countries. Canada, especially the East coast, has many similarities to Guyana with a long history of trade between Newfoundland and Guyana.”
“When I visited recently, I was completely blown away by the excitement shown towards myself and our company. I realized that the opportunity for Canadians to showcase their oil and gas products and skills in Guyana is enormous. For example, one of our primary initiatives with our partners in Halifax, Nova Scotia, is to develop the construction and infrastructure needs in Guyana. That’s a really exciting project and will be the foundation for many more to come,” said Ryan.
Bill Organ, Nova Scotia operations manager and director of logistics says, “We are serving clients from Newfoundland to Guyana and every place in between. We see the connection between Newfoundland and Guyana as something very special. There’s a synergy between the two offshore oil regions. We see similar people, similar offshore oil plays, and both are growing industry sectors. It is a very exciting time. Newfoundland has a 30-year history in oil, whereas Guyana has just begun. We see strategic partnerships between the two regions as a primary area of focus.”
Ryan Burrowes’ best friend and wife, Veronica Burrowes, is the head of financial operations at WTG – Warehouse Transport Group. Veronica says, “We plan to build a much‐needed infrastructure that will support the advancing energy sector in Guyana. We will be looking for partners that will allow for the transference of technology, the ability to transfer skills and transfer much‐needed infrastructure to the region. We are focusing on building a solid foundation of local partnerships that ensures the people of Guyana are the primary benefactors of their oil resource. We will be going beyond the country’s requirements for local content and partnerships and will ensure that the people of Guyana benefit from all of our endeavours.”
Ryan concludes, “Our goal is a long-term vision where everyone wins. We encourage companies who want to do business in Guyana to come and meet with us. We encourage Guyanese companies who want strong partners from abroad, to let us know what they want to accomplish. We’ll be the bridge that builds a sustainable new energy nation.”
For more information on doing business in Guyana please reach out to Ryan Burrowes and his team at www.warehousetransport.ca
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