Belize: Belize participated in virtual roundtable with the US Secretary of State. Hon. Eamon Courtenay, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Immigration and Chairman of the Council for Foreign and Community Relations of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), participated in the first CARICOM-USA high-level engagement under the Biden-Harris Administration.
CARICOM foreign ministers met virtually this morning with Antony J. Blinken, the U.S. Secretary of State.
The roundtable allowed an exchange of views on a range of regional challenges of paramount importance in the current complex international environment, inclusive of the dual crises of COVID-19 recovery and climate change.
During his remarks, Minister Courtenay recognized the historical ties and shared foundational values of the CARICOM-USA relationship.
He emphasized the multifaceted challenges exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, including the devastating economic fallout. He advocated for a multi-dimensional vulnerability index to affect the particular case of small island developing states in the international financial system.
In welcoming the U.S.’s renewed international engagement and leadership to address the impacts of climate change and adaption, Minister Courtenay called for urgent action to address the climate emergency at the upcoming COP26.
Secretary of State Blinken acknowledged the solid and diverse relations between the U.S. and the Caribbean and reiterated their nation’s commitment to engage with the region to end the pandemic and rebuild our economies through collective effort.
Secretary Blinken also pledged to work with the region to tackle the existential threat of climate change and strengthen democracy, the rule of law and security partnerships through the USA-Caribbean Resilience Partnership and the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative, respectively.
Minister Courtenay was accompanied by H.E. Lawrence Sylvester, ambassador of Belize to CARICOM; Ms Ayesha Borland, director of International Affairs (Policy); Mr Idelso Leslie and Mrs Amaris Leal, foreign service officers.
Besides this, The Ministry of Home Affairs & New Growth Industries today received US$15,205 worth of Information Communication Technology (ICT) Equipment, including a high-powered Dell server, 3 Dell workstations, with high-quality monitors, procured under the USAID-funded “Evidence-Based Information Management for Citizen Security in Central America and the Dominican Republic” Project (also known as the InfoSegura Project).