In April 2010, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed Norman Girvan of Jamaica as his Personal Representative on the Border Controversy between Guyana and Venezuela. Mr. Girvan’s role will be to assist Guyana and Venezuela in resolving this long-standing controversy. His appointment responds to a request from the parties to resume the Secretary-General’s good offices, which were suspended in 2007 following the death of the Secretary-General’s last Personal Representative, Oliver Jackman. The Secretary-General commends the parties for seeking to resolve their differences through dialogue, and looks forward to learning of the progress that they make with the assistance of Mr. Girvan.
Mr. Girvan is a respected diplomat who possesses deep knowledge of the Caribbean region. He has travelled extensively in Latin America and is well known for his advocacy of greater cooperation between the Caribbean and Latin America. He was Secretary General of the Association of Caribbean States from 2000-2004, and is currently a Professorial Research Fellow at the University of the West Indies’ Institute of International Relations. Mr. Girvan has worked as Senior Officer and Consultant at the United Nations Centre on Transnational Corporations and as Senior Research Fellow of the United Nations African Institute for Development and Planning in Dakar, Senegal. Additionally, he has served as Chief Technical Director of Jamaica’s National Planning Agency. An economist by training, Mr. Girvan has also served on the Board of Directors of the Bank of Jamaica and in the Economic Council of the Cabinet of the Government of Jamaica.