CARICOM on Wednesday said its foreign affairs ministers and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken have agreed to work together on a number of issues of mutual interest. Among these issues are the covid19 pandemic and support for St Vincent and the Grenadines as it deals with the ongoing eruption of the La Soufriere volcano.
In a statement, Caricom said Blinken held a virtual roundtable discussion with Caricom Secretary-General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque and chairman of Caricom's council for Foreign and Community Relations Eamon Courtenay.
They expressed support for St Vincent and the Grenadines.
Courtenay and LaRocque spoke about the need for access to concessional development financing for the Caribbean based on vulnerability – in the context of the pandemic, La Soufriere, and the upcoming hurricane season.
Caricom foreign affairs ministers also spoke with Blinken about US help to access covid19 vaccines. Blinken stressed his determination to strengthen co-operation and co-ordination between the US and Caricom on the issues raised in the meeting. He said he would raise the matters discussed with his colleague secretaries in the Biden administration.
In February, the Prime Minister said Caricom would seek help from the US to access vaccines for the region. Dr Rowley, who is the current Caricom chairman, was diagnosed with covid 19 on April 6. He has been in quarantine at the Prime Minister's official residence in Blenheim, Tobago since then.
Rowley has been carrying out his prime ministerial and Caricom duties virtually from there.