By Sheena Forde-Craigg
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, (BGIS) — The Republic of Kenya is seeking to enhance its relationship with Barbados and the rest of the Caribbean; disclosed prime minister Mia Amor Mottley and president Uhuru Kenyatta, while at Government House, yesterday.
Prime minister Mottley pointed out that in the third decade of the 21st century there is still no direct link between Africa and the Caribbean, and that is one of the key areas both countries are seeking to work on.
“We also have persons who are talking together about joint marketing for tourism, between people who tend to go to Kenya for safari, [who] are the same people who come to Barbados at the higher end for beaches and vacations. So, we believe that there’s an opportunity for joint marketing of our two destinations together there. “We also feel sports is an area where we feel we can deepen the cooperation, oil and renewable energy; we need to be able to deepen the cooperation there, and … on forestry and agriculture …”, Mottley highlighted. Trade and financial services were also two areas mentioned.
Mottley thanked president Kenyatta for bringing a delegation with him, which include the Governor of the Central Bank of Kenya and other business people, who will have a chance to interact with local companies.
“I want to thank president Kenyatta for bringing the large number of both regulatory officials as well as businessmen and women, because at the end of the day, people trade, not governments, and so, if we’re going to deepen the relationship between our countries, then it is the people who trade that matter,” said, the prime Minister.
President Kenyatta, who had just received the Freedom of Barbados Award, listed the areas he believes there could be cooperation.
“First and foremost is trade, that is a critical area that we can begin to focus ourselves on. I think the second is in terms of deepening this bond the South-South bond. […] There are cultural aspects that I think we can develop and deepen, [and] our sports relationship. There’s also the other agendas, you know, global climate change.”
In addition, he stated that it is his desire to see all people of African descent come together and be able to fight for their respective rights, freedoms and space in global affairs.
“We are able to do this stronger when we are together, and this, I believe is the spirit that has once again brought me to Barbados. It is the spirit that continues to encourage me to continue with the work that we had started. And really, I hope and pray that as a result of the engagements that we have had, that we will see that strengthening, and really reestablishment of the Pan-African spirit that brought us our independence, as we struggle today for the dignity of our people, as we struggle today for the economic liberation, and as we struggle today for the prosperity of our region, especially in view of the current global crisis,” president Kenyatta stressed.
In September 2014, Barbados signed a joint communique to establish diplomatic relations with the Republic of Kenya, and on September 1, this year, William McDonald presented his credentials, as High Commissioner of Barbados to the Republic of Kenya, to President Uhuru Kenyatta.