ST JOHN’S, Antigua – Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer yesterday left the country for Trinidad & Tobago, where he’s leading a delegation to the third China-Caribbean Economic & Trade Co-operation Forum today and tomorrow.
The gathering, a release from his office said, is viewed as the highest level of economic and trade dialogue between the two regions, whose mission is to facilitate trade and economic co-operation for common development.
The Antigua & Barbuda delegation which will be participating in several seminars on tourism, agriculture and infrastructural development, is comprised of Finance and Economy Minister Harold Lovell, Tourism and Civil Aviation Minister John Maginley, Minister of State in the Ministry of Agriculture Chanlah Codrington, ambassadors David Shoul and Anthony Liverpool, Chairman of the Antigua & Barbuda Investment Authority and Deputy Financial Secretary Kevin Silston and Director of Tourism Cortwright Marshall.
During the trip, the prime minister is expected to hold bilateral discussions with Vice Premier of the People’s Republic of China HE Wang Qishan, during which they are to discuss issues of further cooperation between both countries and matters relating to the reform of the United Nations, among others.
Also on the agenda is the signing of a 30 million RMB Economic and Technical Co-operation Agreement between Antigua & Barbuda and the People’s Republic of China for the implementation of projects.
The two-day meeting, according to the release, will also include a seminar on China – Caribbean Co-operation in Finance and Infrastructure, which is to be addressed by Minister of Finance and Economy Harold Lovell.
Minister Lovell is expected to sign two loan agreements with the Governor of the EXIM Bank: a 300 Million RMB loan for the construction of a new airport terminal and a 28.5 Million RMB loan for the construction of a sub-station for the Chinese power plant at Crabb’s, the communiqué said.
“Meanwhile, Tourism Minister John Maginley and Director of Tourism Cortwright Marshall will attend a Seminar on China-Caribbean Co-operation in Tourism during the two-day meeting,” the release noted. “The seminar aims to build a platform for tourism authorities and business representatives from both sides, where they can explore ways to enhance China-Caribbean co-operation in tourism development.”
A seminar on China-Caribbean Co-operation in Agriculture and Fishery will also form part of the Forum in Trinidad & Tobago. Minister of State in the Ministry of Agriculture Chanlah Codrington is representing Antigua & Barbuda at this seminar, which aims to review co-operation between both regions in agriculture and fishery, analyse existing problems and difficulties, and explore ways and recommend projects to strengthen future co-operation.
The two-day China Caribbean Forum is being held under the theme, “Co-operation, Development and Win-for all.”