Venezuela's Ambassador to Guyana Carlos Amador Pérez Silva and Labor Minister Joseph Hamilton discussed the status of Venezuelan migrants and possible measures that can be taken to improve their living conditions.
Local authorities are open to legalizing the presence of 22,000 Venezuelan migrants so that they can have access to legal work and to other forms of protection and skills training regardless of age and qualifications.
The UN Human Rights Council reported that by December of 2020 there were over 22,000 Venezuelan migrants and refugees in Guyana.
Perez Silva welcomed the talks as a starting point to improving bilateral relations.
Most Venezuelan migrants in Guyana work in small businesses, commerce, hospitality, construction, and mining.
Hamilton said that the government of Guyana has proposed to train Venezuelan migrants residing in the country in the technical and vocational sectors to allow them to find jobs.
Hamilton also said that he has met with the regional director of the International Organization for Migration for North America, Central America and the Caribbean, Michele Klein Solomon, as well as other officials to learn about training opportunities for South Americans.
The minister also acknowledged that a large number of Venezuelan migrants have licenses to work, but are not qualified for the sectors in most need of labor. Hamilton pointed out that the Industrial Training Board of Guyana will address this issue.
Our goal is to offer technical and vocational training for people of any age without certification, Hamilton said.
Among the courses offered by the Training Board are electrical installation, child care, and handicrafts, in addition to commercial food preparation and sewing.
Hamilton also said that all courses will be free of charge and that no licenses or certificates will be required to take the courses.