Basseterre, St. Kitts, March 10, 2021 (SKNIS): Her Excellency (H.E.) Lilian Chatterjee, High Commissioner of Canada to St. Kitts and Nevis presented her Letter of Introduction to Prime Minister, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, virtually during a brief but significant ceremony on March 10, 2021.
High Commissioner Chatterjee noted that she is proud to be the representative to St. Kitts and Nevis and reflected briefly on the relationship of both countries, adding that “St. Kitts and Nevis and Canada share a history of friendship that is strong and abiding. Our two countries enjoy warm relations based on people-to-people ties and we share the distinction of both being colonized by the British and the French.”
Speaking on the negative impact of COVID-19 globally, the high commissioner said that Canada will stand with St. Kitts and Nevis and CARICOM in fighting the pandemic.
“As a community of nations, we must look to build back better, building in more resilience into the international financial system and more justice and equity for small island states. The crisis has exposed the fragility of global value chains and inequity of market access including access to central goods like PPE [personal protective equipment] and lately, vaccines. We must tackle these challenges as friends, partners and neighbours,” said H.E. Chatterjee.
H.E. Chatterjee added that Canada and St. Kitts and Nevis will continue to work together in other areas to strengthen relations.
“We will continue to work together sharing experiences and technical expertise in public financial management, gender equality, justice sector reform, customs and security cooperation. We are making substantial investments in the capital of the Caribbean Development Bank…,” she said. “I am confident that Canada and St. Kitts and Nevis will continue to work together as friends towards a more prosperous, safe and secure Hemisphere.”
Prime Minister Harris welcomed H.E. Chatterjee adding that the government looks forward to working closely with her.
Also commenting on COVID-19 impacts on the Caribbean, Dr. Harris noted that the pandemic “significantly undermined economies.” He noted that the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis continues to find ways to stimulate the economy and welcomes assistance from Canada.
“We are seeking Canada’s support as a good friend, as a country with which we have had very healthy relations, a country that we believe share the same values and a country to which our people have… been making significant contributions there,” said Dr. Harris.
Dr. Harris reiterated that St. Kitts and Nevis and Canada share a “strong belief in democracy, rule of law, of course, in the free enterprise system” while stating that the Federation looks forward to continued bilateral relations with Canada as both countries work together for the greater good.