Colombian President Iván Duque Friday announced his intention to create a Regional Solidarity Fund, in order to serve the population in terms of health and in case of natural disasters. He made those remarks at the II Ministerial Summit of the Caribbean Community in Barranquilla.
The meeting was focused on economic reactivation, health, climate change and gender equality. Eamon Courtenay, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade of Belize, who chairs the Caricom Council, as well as Secretary General, Natalie Barnett, were present.
“Today I want to convey to all the Caricom countries that Colombia wants to strengthen that bond, that collaboration in security matters,” Duque said at the opening ceremony of the event.
A meeting to ratify Caricom that Colombia wants to support this institution and support the member countries, he added.
During the Barranquilla meeting, agreements signed June 29, 2019, in Cartagena de Indias, were reviewed.
Colombia wants to establish a short, medium and long-term cooperation framework with Caricom, where we have labor exchanges, educational exchanges, scientific exchanges, Duque went on.
The Colombian President also expressed his concern about natural disasters and vaccination against COVID-19, in addition to economic and security reactivation. He added that once his country begins to produce vaccines against the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the next 12 months, he also hoped to have a bond of cooperation with Caricom nations.
We have worked hand in hand with you to strengthen multilateralism, Duque underlined.
The Colombian leader also outlined his vision of a Disaster Management Fund (Fome), which was created in Colombia in the context of the pandemic. The idea is that this mechanism may always be available, that it has a way of being financed regularly from ordinary income and that it be a vehicle to face highly relevant contingencies, so that organizations such as the World Bank or the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) can be more effectively summoned, Duque explained.
Caricom is an international mechanism made up of Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago.
In 2019 it was agreed that a Summit like Friday's would be held every three years.
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