Suriname has reactivated its membership in the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), a move government officials say is designed to improve economic ties with the Middle East.
Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Lackin acknowledged the decision by the Desi Bouterse administration to implement new policies regarding Suriname's development aid policies.
He said the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), the OIC's financing branch, is one of many institutions that could help finance several projects on the Dutch-speaking CARICOM country.
"We believe this organisation is an important one, taking into consideration the resources which are available through the IsDB to finance our programmes and projects," Lackin said.
"Development of our agricultural sector is important to the government. Especially the agro and food-processing industries need a boost."
The reactivation of Suriname's OIC membership follows bilateral talks President Bouterse held in New York last September with OIC Secretary-General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu.
Guyana has been listed as the only other CARICOM country to be a member of the 56-member OIC. It joined the grouping in 1989.