Cayman Islands Premier Alden McLaughlin said that Lord Ahmad had “done a stellar job” as the overseas territories minister over the last two years, as he addressed the opening of the Pre-JMC (Joint Ministerial Council) meeting which convened British Overseas Territories leaders, including the Falkland Islands.
McLaughlin pointed out that when the JMC takes place in November, Britain will have a new prime minister and the players the overseas territories currently deal with could all change.
But wishing out loud that Lord Ahmad remains in his job, McLaughlin said he had “shown a willingness to fight the establishments when needed on behalf of the people in our territories”.
As he welcomed his fellow territory leaders, the premier said that each year as they gather for the meetings ahead of the main event in London, the items on the agenda “vary with the changing climate, both figuratively and literally”, making the discussion toward an agreed common position to take to London ever more important, as he listed the issues in front of them.
When the meeting happens, he said, “What we do not know, as yet, is whether the October deadline for Brexit will have been met, and so we can only watch and wait as the scenarios continue to play out and work to ensure that whatever the outcome, we in the territories are able to benefit from opportunities presented.
He said the leaders now had the opportunity to exchange views on political and constitutional issues.
“I look forward to the usual spirited discussion and debate and pray that we all find these proceedings informative and that we come away with a strategic plan to take our message forward to the full JMC meeting.”
McLaughlin also spoke about the inaugural UK/OT Trade Summit, and the constitutional celebrations for the 60th anniversary.