BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, OCTOBER 7TH, 2016 (PRESS SEC) – Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris has a packed schedule in Washington, D.C., this week, where he is attending a number of International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank meetings in his capacity as Minister of Finance for St. Kitts and Nevis.

The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group (known as the “Bretton Woods institutions” because they were formed at a meeting of 43 countries in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, USA in July 1944) are central players in the world’s financial architecture.  Their focus is on reducing poverty, as well as promoting global economic and financial stability.

On the evening of Wednesday, October 5th, Dr. Harris was a special guest at a Constituency Reception for visiting National Delegations, which he attended with Canada’s Minister of Finance, the Honourable William Francis Morneau, who represents Canada on the Board of Governors of both the IMF and the World Bank Group.

Canada’s Constituency at the IMF and the World Bank Group includes – in addition to Canada – Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana (World Bank Group only), Ireland, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Governors, such as Canada’s Minister of Finance, delegate day-to-day decisions to an Executive Director at both institutions.  Mr. James A. Haley serves as Executive Director for the Constituency at the International Monetary Fund and Mr. Alister Smith serves as Executive Director for the Constituency at the World Bank Group.

Wednesday evening’s Constituency Reception was held at the headquarters of the IMF from 6:30pm to 7:30pm under the auspices of Mr. James A. Haley, Mr. Alister Smith, and the offices of the Executive Director for Canada, Ireland, and the Caribbean at the IMF and World Bank Group.

During the Annual and Spring Meetings of the IMF and the World Bank Group, Canada’s Finance Minister tables written statements for the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC) of the Board of Governors of the IMF.  The IMFC, which is focused on global growth and stability, as well as on jobs, is a policy steering body of the International Monetary Fund, and the statements presented by the Canadian Finance Minister outline Canada’s and its Constituency’s views on the governance, lending and surveillance activities of the Fund.

Earlier in the day on Wednesday, the Prime Minister of St. Kitts & Nevis, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, met with the World Bank’s high-level authorities for the Caribbean in Washington, D.C.  The delegation of St. Kitts and Nevis also comprised Her Excellency Dr. Thelma Phillip-Browne, Ambassador to the United States of America, and His Excellency Dr. Everson Hull, Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States.

The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the current status of St. Kitts and Nevis’ economy and the strategic priorities of the Team Unity administration led by Prime Minister Harris.  The World Bank authorities, headed by Ms. Sophie Sirtaine, Country Director for the Caribbean Country Management Unit, congratulated Dr. Harris for the sound macroeconomic performance of the country.  They also confirmed that the World Bank stands ready to support St. Kitts and Nevis in the important long-term development priorities highlighted by the Prime Minister, like the strengthening of the banking sector’s strategy to deal with de-risking, improving the delivery of social services like education and health care, and building adequate resilience mechanisms against climate-driven disasters.

Today, Friday, October 7th, the Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis attended the 2016 Plenary Session of the Annual Meetings.  Dr. Jim Yong Kim, World Bank Group President, and Ms. Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, addressed the delegates at the event, which was held at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C.  You can view an archived video here:

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