08.11.2017 - ODG

UNESCO Director-General meets with CARICOM Members


Paris, 6 November – UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova, met with Ministers, Heads of Delegation, Secretaries General of National Commissions, Ambassador and Representatives of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) present at the 39th session of the General Conference. She was accompanied by the UNESCO Senior Management Team.

H.E. Ms. Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports of Jamaica chaired the meeting and made an introduction on behalf of the CARICOM, welcoming UNESCO priority on the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and underlining the need to ensure adequate financial resources to implement the Action Plan for SIDS.

Other Caribbean representatives pledged for special consideration of Caribbean SIDS, especially for funding purposes. They stated that macroeconomic indicators alone misplace them as Middle Income Countries, thus making them ineligible for official development assistance. This approach does not take into account the vulnerability factor.

Irina Bokova reiterated UNESCO’s firm commitment to accompany Caribbean Member States in a multilateral action, especially in the wake of terrible category 5 hurricanes that recently hit the Region. She mentioned the special inter-sectoral mechanism that was activated to respond to these disasters and emphasised that although UNESCO is not a funding agency, the Organization can certainly use its convening and partnering power to serve as a catalyser for the special needs and situation of SIDS in general, and Caribbean SIDS in particular.

Finally, the Caribbean delegation offered a farewell token of appreciation for Ms. Irina Bokova, in acknowledgment of her work as the head of UNESCO over the past eight years. Present at the meeting where H.E. Mr. St. Clair Prince, Minister of Education of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, H.E. Ms. Nicolette Henry, Minister of Education of Guyana, H.E. Mr. Desmond Edwards, Ambassador of Bahamas to UNESCO, H.E. Mr. David P. Doyle, Ambassador of Saint Kitts and Nevis to UNESCO, H.E. Mr. Wafic Said, Ambassador from St. Vincent and the Grenadines to UNESCO, H.E. Ms. Vilma Mc Nish, Ambassador of Jamaica to UNESCO, as well as Secretaries General and other representatives of Barbados, St Maarten, Grenada, Belize, Curacao and CARICOM.

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