By Caribbean News Global
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – François-Philippe Champagne, minister of foreign affairs concluded a successful series of meetings with leaders of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) in Bridgetown, Barbados on behalf of prime minister Justin Trudeau.
It was previously announced that prime minister Trudeau, would travel to Bridgetown, Barbados to participate in the conference of heads of government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to build even stronger ties with the region – as Canada pursues its candidacy for election to the United Nations Security Council in 2021-2022.
However, prime minister Trudeau cancelled the trip to Barbados as Indigenous demonstrators and their supporters continued to halt train service, resulting in the cancellation of train service and interruptions in trade and economic activity across parts of Canada.
A statement from Global Affairs Canada says, “Over the past two days of meetings in Barbados minister Champagne and CARICOM leaders discussed solutions to the impacts of climate change and ways to promote economic growth that works for everyone.
“Canada is a long-time partner of Caribbean island countries. Canada and Caribbean island countries’ shared interest in protecting oceans and coastal communities will help address the economic and social costs of climate change.
“Together, minister Champagne and CARICOM leaders agreed to launch an annual Canada-CARICOM dialogue to discuss political, trade, development and security priorities specific to the almost 20 million people who call the Caribbean islands home.
“While in Bridgetown, minister Champagne highlighted new Canadian funding to support CARICOM efforts to counter the devastating impacts of climate change. These efforts range from emergency response and preparedness to climate-smart agriculture and the blue economy. He also offered to expand the scope of Canadian technical expert assistance in areas prioritized by CARICOM countries.
“In bilateral and group discussions at the CARICOM Inter-sessional meeting, the minister also underscored Canada as a vital partner in advancing shared regional and global interests, as it continues to pursue its candidacy for the United Nations Security Council in 2021-2022.”
“Canada understands the challenges that Caribbean countries face when it comes to protecting our oceans and the environment. Climate change is a global problem, and finding solutions that grow our economies and protect our citizens is the responsibility of all of us. Canada and CARICOM will work together to deepen our relationship while seeking solutions to the climate crisis and creating economic growth. Canada will continue to invest in the special and historic relationship that unites the peoples of Canada and the Caribbean,” said Canada’s minister of foreign affairs.