Basseterre, St. Kitts, April 13, 2015 (SKNIS): Ministers of Foreign Affairs, the Honourable Mark Brantley, urged delegates at the Seventh Summit of the Americas, to take a more proactive approach to hemispheric developmental issues raised at the April 10 -11, meeting held in Panama City, Panama under the theme “Prosperity with Equity: the Challenge of Cooperation in the Americas.”
He described the summit as a historic one that brought greater unity to nations of the hemisphere.
The Seventh Summit of the Americas, the first to encapsulate the entire hemisphere, has provided us with the occasion to put aside the myriad of differences that has divided us over the years,” stressed the foreign minister. “Differences that all too often are based on misconceptions and misunderstandings. Citizens of the Americas are demanding that we cooperate to overcome the challenges that stunt our growth and affect out cohesion.”
As such, Minister Brantley stressed that St. Kitts and Nevis remains committed to the process of cooperation and togetherness, whilst looking to the future for opportunities for all and not being bogged down by historical differences.
“St. Kitts and Nevis concretely believes that this summit has a capacity to reshape the region, but, we must first focus on the issues that unite us and not bring ourselves in the ideological disagreements of the past,” he stated. “We have been mandated to transform our region into one that promotes growth over conflict and harmony over discord, free trade over embargo. We should not let the golden opportunity dissipate as we are nations blessed with many resources and strength.”
Minister Brantley spoke to the initiatives being pursued by the government of national unity in St. Kitts and Nevis, as part of a determined and deliberate effort to reduce poverty and inequality.
“Mr. Chairman, in the face of multi-fiscal challenges, St. Kitts and Nevis has an ongoing commitment to eliminate poverty from our twin island Federation,” he said. “We have tackled hunger and poverty head on, with a number of innovative and reasonable policies which are producing substantive results. We also know that the issue of poverty cannot be addressed without focusing on gender and equality, thus we have endeavoured to level the playing field for women throughout our society.”
He further stated that “we can never have prosperity with equity, if women continue to be marginalized.”
The Summit marked the first time all 35 members of the Organization of American States (OAS) were represented and shared in a spirit of mutual respect, cooperation and unity.