Government is committed to forging a stronger relationship with the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) multi-country office and their new representative.
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Dr. Jerome Walcott, gave this commitment recently, and offered his support to the new UNDP Resident Representative to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Ms. Valerie Cliff, during a virtual courtesy call and acceptance of her credentials.
Minister Walcott noted that UNDP has been a supportive partner in assisting the region with its developmental issues, and expressed gratitude, on behalf of Government, for its assistance.
“I want at the outset to express my appreciation and thanks for the invaluable role that UNDP has been playing in Barbados, especially as it relates to how we’re coping with the COVID-19 pandemic . I want to commend the UNDP for the role it has been playing in assisting us with service of assessment and economic assessment, as we approach international financial institutions to put our case before them, and now, more recently, the response and vital assistance provided after the La Soufriere volcanic eruption in St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” Senator Walcott stated.
The UNDP Resident Representative noted that “the partnership between UNDP and the Government of Barbados and other governments in the region is a very long standing, cordial and supportive relationship”. She added: “I’m very much looking forward to working with you and your colleagues.”
Ms. Cliff stressed that she is equally as determined as the former Resident Representative to assist Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean with their developmental issues, and that the UNDP is committed to figuring out how best it could support countries and their economies moving forward, in what she described as a “very difficult, difficult period”.
The two officials also discussed the multi-country programme; renewable energy; the vulnerability index and the sustainable development goals, in relation to voluntary national reviews and grant funding; climate change, and the upcoming United Nations Climate Change conference, slated for November in Glasgow, Scotland.
The UNDP has been operating in Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean since 1980.