Spain, St Lucia to Deepen Ties

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Above: St Lucia

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Spain has appointed Jose Maria Fernandez Lopex de Turiso as its new Ambassador to St Lucia.

The Ambassador, who presented his letters of credence at Government House on Thursday, said he would work to deepen relations between the two countries.

“Saint Lucia will find in Spain a strong ally and a reliable partner, as my country is certainly one European state that is rooted in the western values of democracy and respect for human rights,” he said. “Spain has a special sensitivity towards the Caribbean and is able to defend the interests of the region in multilateral format.”

The Spanish government plans to enhance its cooperation with the Eastern Caribbean country in several major areas, he said.

“We need enhanced cooperation in areas such as climate change, global health, energy, food security as well as the fight against illicit trafficking; and we aspire to have, with Saint Lucia, communication channels which will help us combine our efforts to cooperate better in these areas,” he said. “We also share Saint Lucia’s concern for regional security, renewable energy issues, and tourism, and Spain has much experience in those areas.”
Dr Emsco Remy, St Lucia’s Deputy Governor General, said that, as a small island developing state, St Lucia had “not been left unscathed by the negative effects of the global economic crisis.”
“We are ever mindful of our vulnerabilities to the problems posed by globalization and climate change,” he said. “Technical cooperation programs in the fields of tourism and sustainable renewable energy, where Spain has had a long history of success and recent achievement, would be welcomed.”
The new envoy succeeds former Spanish Ambassador Joaquin Maria de Aristegui Laborde.