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Group Title: Official newsletter of the Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Title: Official newsletter
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00099220/00005
 Material Information
Title: Official newsletter
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Publisher: Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Place of Publication: London, England
Publication Date: April 2005
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Bibliographic ID: UF00099220
Volume ID: VID00005
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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Table of Contents
    Cover
        Cover
    Introduction
        Introduction
    Main
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
Full Text





NEWSLETTER

The Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
ISSUE No.98 April 2005


Sailing Wleek
2005

ocafs andi visitors
alike enjoy the
festivities (be fow)
at Dickenson
3aby


15 Thayer Street, London W1U 3JT
Tel: 020 7486 7073 Fax: 020 7486 9970


WIl i .iwi .m-barbuda.com


Inside
Antigua and Barbuda to establish closer cultural ties with Cuba (page 3)
Deputy Prime Minister addresses Ministerial segment at the UN (page 5
Prime Minister attends inauguration of CCJ (page 7)
Tourism News (pages 9 to 10)
Digital Photos by Maurice F. Merchant








HIGH COMMISSIONER'S MESSAGE


Greetings!


The 38th Antigua Sailing Week began on
24th April and culminated on 30th April. This great
event is considered by many sailing enthusiasts to be
one of the top five regattas in the world.

Over the years Sailing Week has evolved
from a regatta for local yachtsmen to an international
event that spans five days. It attracts an average of
200 yachts, over 1500 participants, 5000 spectators
and some of the biggest, fastest and most impressive
sailing yachts in the world. (sailingweek.com)

Additionally, the Tourism Industry has
recorded a 1.2% increase for visitor arrivals for the
period January through March 2005. This augurs well
for the industry and gives rise to the hope that this
trend will continue in the ensuing months.

BOTANICAL GARDEN

It is indeed gratifying to see that The
Botanical Garden Board has received Goverment's
support as was evidenced by Cabinet's tour of the
Botanical Garden in early April.


Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer confirmed
that the presence of Cabinet signalled the
importance that the government places on the
restoration of the garden as it related to the overall
enhancement of the city.

I believe that we can all agree with Peter
Harker, the Chairman of the Botanical Garden Board,
and the government that the garden would also
become a tourist attraction and "a monument that
signifies that the people of Antigua and Barbuda
appreciate that a thing of beauty is a joy forever".

Just to refresh your memory: The Botanical
Garden is located in Victoria Park at the top of St.
John's in the "greenbelt" area of the city. It borders
the Queen Elizabeth Highway and Independence
Avenue. The Garden is just to the east of the
National Archives and the site for the new Public
Library building.


INAUGURATION OF THE CARIBBEAN
COURT OF JUSTICE (CCJ)

As is the tradition with most High courts, the
Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) marked its
inauguration with much pomp and ceremony on
Saturday, April 16, at the refurbished Queens Hall in
Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago.

The ceremony which was preceded by an
Inter-Faith Service, included speeches from the
President of Surname and Chairman of CARICOM,
Ronald Veneetian, Prime Ministers Patrick Manning
and Dr. Kenny Anthony, Secretary General of
CARICOM Dr. Edwin Carrington and President of the
CCJ, Michael de la Bastide.

Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer attended
the inauguration accompanied by Attomey General,
and Minister of Legal Affairs, Justin Simon, Q. C.,
Justice Minister Colin Derrick and Registrar at the
High Court, Joanne Freeland-Roberts.


Dr Carl Roberts
High Commissioner








GOVERNMENT


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PM Spencer urges closer
relations with Brazil

Prime Minister of Antigua and
Barbuda Baldwin Spencer has predicted
that the Antigua-Brazil connection will
swiftly become a major marketplace for
Brazil/Caribbean trade.

The Prime Minister was
speaking at the opening of the First
Antigua-Brazil Trade Fair organized by
the ABI Financial Group.

"I expect that in very short order,
the Antigua-Brazil Trade Fair will
transform this island into a major hub for
trade between Brazil and the sub-region,
and the wider Caribbean. This could
eventually lead to a central role for
Antigua as the hub for trade between the
Caribbean Islands and Latin America, and
the wider world," he said.

The country's leader noted that
the vision of the ABI Financial Group, its
aggressive investment posture, and its


outstanding record for success, would make
it possible. It was also pointed out that it
would mean direct economic benefits,
significant entrepreneurial opportunities and
increasing job options for the Antiguan and
Barbudan people.


"I envisage even greater
opportunity accruing to Antigua and
Barbuda from this event. It would be in
the interest of Brazilian suppliers for
Antigua and Barbuda to become a
more affluent and therefore a more
lucrative market. To this end, a tiny
fraction of the upper end of Brazil's 182
million people would provide a
tremendous boost to Antigua and
Barbuda's tourism fortunes," Prime
Minister Spencer said.

Prime Minister Spencer
outlined that this can be achieved by
direct air services between the major
cities of Brazil and Antigua and
Barbuda. He challenged the ABI
Executive team and their Brazilian
counterparts to explore the possibility
of direct airline connections between
the two countries.

"A logical option for and
outcome from the Antigua-Brazil Trade
Fair would be expanding air traffic, and,
ultimately, direct, scheduled airlift
between our two countries," the
country's leader concluded.


15 Thayer Street, London W1U 3JT
Tel: 020 7486 7073 Fax: 020 7486 9970


lip. ,-- .ii _yi.l.i-barbuda.com


aJdA21 Executives I








GOVERNMENT


I *o.9 A i


Ambassador Underwood
presents credentials to
President Chavez

The President of the Bolivarian
Republic of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez
Frias received the credentials of
Ambassador Joan H. Underwood at a
ceremony that took place at the
presidential palace Miraflores. Also
present at the ceremony was Eustoquio
Contreras, Vice Minister in the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs with responsibility for
Latin America and the Caribbean.

While in Caracas, Ambassador
Underwood also held discussions with
Government officials about the
possibility of Antigua and Barbuda
accessing fuel at discounted prices
under President Chavez's Petro Caribe
initiative. Since assuming office in 2004
the UPP Administration has subsidized
the cost of fuel at the pump thereby
shielding consumers from the escalating
prices on the international market. The
contemplated agreement with
Venezuela would represent a more
sustainable approach to the
management of the cost of fuel in
Antigua and Barbuda.


North America.


Arrangements are currently
being made for a high level
delegation to travel to
Venezuela to advance the
discussions ahead of a
meeting of fuel ministers
scheduled to be held in
Caracas at the end of April.

In addition to the fuel
initiative, the Venezuelan
Government has offered to
assist Antigua and Barbuda
by providing medical
services. Such services
may provide an affordable,
high quality alternative to
similar services provided
by medical institutions in


In the upcoming months
Ambassador Underwood will be facilitating
dialogue between the relevant healthcare
authorities in Venezuela and Antigua and
Barbuda.

In addition to Venezuela
Ambassador Underwood also has
responsibility for diplomatic relations with
Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Argentina and
Colombia.

Antigua and
Barbuda
and Chile to
further
strengthen
relations

On 25th April,
Antigua and Barbuda
and Chile highlighted
the need for both
countries to move
towards further
strengthening their
relations. Prime Mifini
Dezput-yforel


I -,'
Y .
dal


ter a ladwin Spencer greetit0
rn Mfinster Christian Barros


15 Thayer Street, London W1U 3JT
Tel: 020 7486 7073 Fax: 020 7486 9970


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During a meeting with Prime
Minister of Antigua and Barbuda
Baldwin Spencer, Deputy Minister of
Foreign Affairs of Chile, Christian
Barros stated that both countries had
developed strong political links. He
presented Prime Minister Spencer
with a letter from President Ricardo
Lagos of Chile, outlining the strong
relations which already exist
between the two countries.

He also pointed out that the
strong relations can be improved in
the areas of tourism and commended
the role being played by Ambassador
Joan Underwood in opening up
relations with South America. He
stated that Ambassador Underwood
will play a pivotal role in firming up
the relations between Chile and
Antigua and Barbuda.

The meeting was also
attended by Ambassador of Chile to
Antigua and Barbuda, Alfonso Silva,
who earlier in the day presented his
credentials to Governor General Sir
James Carlisle.

Prime Minister Spencer,
who received another invitation to
officially visit Chile from Deputy
Minister Barros, informed the


ambassador 'Undenvood with Vice
Ministers Bolivar andContreras








GOVERNMENT


delegation that he is pleased that
Chilean experts would shortly visit
Antigua and Barbuda to assist the
country in the development of its
agricultural sector by establishing a
number of model farms.

The Prime Minister also
outlined that his government is willing to
pursue the further development of
relations with Chile, which has been a
friend to Antigua and Barbuda.

Earlier in the day, the Chilean
Minister presented computers to the
Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Fisheries,
Marine Resources and Agro Industries.

On May 2, CARICOM's choice
for Secretary-General of the
Organization of American States (OAS),
Chile's candidate Jose Miguel Insulza
was elected to head the Organisation.

Antigua and Barbuda to
establish closer Cultural
Cooperation with Cuba

Antigua and Barbuda and Cuba
has established closer cooperation in the
field of culture.

At the recently held meeting of
an Antigua/Barbuda/Cuba Joint
Commission during the official visit to
Cuba of Prime Minister Spencer, it was
agreed that Cuba will provide training in
the areas of dance, visual arts and the
production of handicraft for the tourism
market.

The Ministry is expected to
identify an individual to be the
counterpart for all cultural collaboration
purposes with Cuba.

Meanwhile, the construction of
the Sir Vivian Richards monument will
resume with the arrival of Cuban sculptor
Andres Gonzalez to initiate the execution
of the project. Andres Gonzalez was


Issu No9 Api 00


The Antigua and'Barbiuda delegation du ring the Cuban talks


responsible for the construction of the Sir
V.C. Bird bust at the West Bus Station.

During the Joint Commission
Meeting invitations were extended to the
Minister of Culture to attend the IV
International Congress "Culture and
Development" to be held in Havana, Cuba
from June 6 to 9 and the 25th Edition of the
Caribbean Festival to be held in Santiago
de Cuba from July 3 to 9.

The Cuban cultural division also
expressed their willingness to evaluate any
project in the different artistic
manifestations, which may result from
interest by Antigua and Barbuda.



Cuban Officials on follow-up
visit to Antigua and Barbuda

On 25th April two Cuban
Government officials paid a visit on Prime
Minister Baldwin Spencer as part of an
assessment and planning programme
which will lead to the implementation of a
number of projects agreed upon by Prime
Minister Spencer and Cuban Leader Fidel
Castro recently.


Cuban Ambassador to
Antigua and Barbuda, His Excellency
Jose Jaoquin Alvarez Portela and
Roberto Lepez, Senior Advisor to the
Cuban Vice President Carlos Lage
visited Antigua and Barbuda on
direct orders from President Fidel
Castro to move ahead with
implementation of the agreements
signed with Antigua and Barbuda.

Prime Minister Spencer,
who handed a letter to Mr. Lepez for
delivery to President Fidel Castro,
said that the Cuban officials' visit
shows the political commitment of
Cuba to implement the agreements
reached with that country.

The Prime Minister also
highlighted the need to fast track the
LIAT initiative which he developed in
Cuba for the airline to start flights to
Havana from St. John's. He
requested that the Cuban officials
meet as soon as possible with senior
management of LIAT.

It was also disclosed during
the meeting that Cuba will send
within one week two experts relating
to the establishing of a polyclinic and


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GOVERNMENT N

other areas of cooperation. Antigua and
Barbuda also promised to provide
information before July on the 50
scholarship applicants, which was
agreed to by Cuba.

The Cuban team also held
meetings with Finance Minister Dr. Errol
Cort and Health Minister John Maginley.
Antigua and Barbuda's Ambassador
Designate to Cuba Bruce Goodwin, who
attended the meetings, informed Prime
Minister Spencer of their outcomes and
advised that the need exists for
additional economic and other data to be
provided to the Cubans in order for
further analysis to be made of the
various sectors being assisted by Cuba.



Cabinet tours Botanical
Garden in preparation for
planned makeover

The Botanical Garden Board
has received the government backing as
the full component of Cabinet toured the
Botanical Garden to get a first-hand view
of planned makeover of the garden into
a multi-functional park.

Speaking to the press after the
tour, Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer
said, "It is an integral part of this
government's effort to make Antigua and
Barbuda a garden of the Caribbean and
in order to do that we have to start with
the Botanical Garden," Mr. Spencer said.

He also highly commended the
quick work of the Botanical Garden
Board in cleaning the area readying it for
the major changes planned, and pledged
the government's support. Chairman of
the Botanical Garden Board Peter
Harker added that it was government's
intent that the Garden would also
become a tourist attraction and "a
monument that signifies that the people
of Antigua and Barbuda appreciate that
a thing of beauty is a joy forever."


*: ~ i


.. .. .. . .. . .. .
.... ... ... .... . .. ... . ... .... ... ... ...


According to Harker, the
complete makeover of the Botanical
Garden which will include an
amphitheatre, playground, gazebos,
renovated bathroom facilities, fencing of
the entire gardens, ice-cream parlour and
confectionary area plus proper utilities -
would take approximately two years on an
initial budget of $500,000.

It is also anticipated that the
building that houses Citizens Welfare
Division will be reverted to the park and
utilised for arts and craft. It is also
anticipated that the Prison Rehabilitation
Centre, in the vicinity of the Garden will
also be relocated.

Harker is also seeking to have the
Botanical Garden taken out of the hands of
government and the private sector and
placed in a trust so it is more permanent.

The legal requirements of such a
trust are being researched.


15 Thayer Street, London W1U 3JT
Tel: 020 7486 7073 Fax: 020 7486 9970


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The 46th International Social
Service Spring Fair
on
Wednesday 11th May 2005
at
Kensington Town Hall
Hornton Street
London W8
11am to 7pm

Admission 5
Stalls from around the world
brought to your doorstep by
the diplomatic missions of
over 100 countries

Don't miss London's largest,
most colourful Charity Fair.
Sample the best of global
cuisine; choose from an
inspiring selection of ceramics,
jewellery and glass; adorn
yourself with scarves, hats and
shoes; give the house a make-
over with exotic flowers,
textiles and rugs; dance to the
beat of live world music; unwinc
at the all-day licensed bar.









GOVERNMENT


Issue Apri2005


...................................
Deputy Prime.9%fifiu-T I.Wding.th DanieC(2ndfrom right)
...............................................................................................
...............................................................................................
...............................................................................................
.... .............
............
t. U. WNatwm
........ .... ... ......... ...........................
...............................................................
...............................................................
...............................................................


Minister Daniel addresses
the Ministerial Segment of
the Commission on
Sustainable Development

In his first address to Ministers
attending the High Level Segment of the
United Nations Commission on
Sustainable Development, Antigua and
Barbuda's Deputy Prime Minister and
Minister of Public Works, Transportation
and Environment, Wilmoth Daniel,
underscored his government's
commitment to the environment and to
greater involvement with the important
issues which are considered by United
Nations system.

"Our environment is a prime
resource that Antigua and Barbuda gladly
shares with the rest of the world," the
Minister said, adding further that, "the
environment powers the economies of the
Caribbean, which are dependent on
tourism [particularly] so in the case of
Antigua and Barbuda."

Echoing some of themes that
were the focus of the Commission's
discussions, Minister Daniel proudly
observed "Antigua and Barbuda is
committed to achieving the goal [of water
for all] well ahead of the United Nation's


Millennium Development target in 2015[and
to] the installation of the first and long
overdue sewage system in our capital city,
St. John's."

The Minister also cited the
relatively high ranking of Antigua and
Barbuda of 55 among 77 countries on the
Human Development Index, which is
published annually by the United Nations
Development Programme, but cautioned
that "despite this high ranking, Antigua and
Barbuda retains all the vulnerabilities of a
small island developing State."

The Commission on Sustainable
Development (CSD) is composed of 53
members elected for terms of office of three
years, meets annually for a period of two to
three weeks. The Commission serves as a
high level forum on sustainable
development that reviews progress at the
international, regional and national levels in
the implementation of recommendations
and commitments contained in the final
documents of the United Nations
Conference on Environment and
Development (UNCED), namely: Agenda
21; and the Rio Declaration on Environment
and Development. The Commission
elaborates policy guidance and options for
future activities to follow up the
Johannesbura Plan of Implementation to
achieve sustainable development, and
promotes dialogue and build partnerships


for sustainable development with
governments, the international
community and the major groups
identified in Agenda 21 as key actors
outside the central government who
have a major role to play in the
transition towards sustainable
development.

During his visit to the United
Nations, Minister Daniel used the
opportunity to hold a series of bilateral
meetings with his counterparts to
discuss initiatives in areas of sanitation
and clean energy. Minister Daniel held
bilateral meetings with Ms Connie
Hedegaard, Minister of Environment of
Denmark; Lord Whitty, Minister of
Farming, Food and Energy of the
United Kingdom; and Mr. Stavros
Dimas, European Commissioner for
Environment.

On Friday, April 22, Minister
Daniel participated in a town hall-style
meeting with Antiguans and Barbudans
residing in the tri-State area of New
York, New Jersey and Connecticut, on
his government plans to develop the
infrastructure of Antigua and Barbuda.


Government to continue
to meet the water needs
of Antiguans and
Barbudans

Antigua and Barbuda's
Minister of Finance and the Economy,
Dr. Errol Cort, underlined his
Government's commitment to the
delivery of basic water services to the
citizens of Antigua and Barbuda during
a panel discussion at the United
Nations Commission on Sustainable
Development (CSD) for Ministers of
Finance and Development
Cooperation. Chairman of the UN
commission on sustainable
Development, Dr John Ashe, chaired
the panel discussions.


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GOVERNMENT


Isu *o : pi 200


.Minister of finance and
The Economy, Dr TrroCCort


In response to the question on
what roles do Governments see for the
private sector whether large-scale or
small scale and for public-private
partnerships in meeting water supply
and sanitation needs, Minister Cort told
his colleague Ministers that "while the
role of public-private partnerships is very
important, the onus for ensuring that
water is supplied to all sectors of society,
especially to the less fortunate, must rest
with Governments."

On the subject of human
settlements/slums, Minister Cort told the
panel that his Government supported:

(a) micro-credit and micro-financing
that can both target low-income
people and increase their
access to housing, thereby
reducing slum dwellings;
(b) Public-private partnerships to
provide low-cost financing for
housing is necessary to tackle
the problem of slum dwellings;
(c) the need for international
financial support for
community-based projects in
slum areas and the provision of


unused public lands for low-cost
housing as vehicles for achieving
the developmental goals on
human settlements; and
(d) actions and policy decisions to
create alternatives to new or
expanded slum formations,
including providing gainful
employment for youth, improving
the system of land tenure and the
inclusion of community based
groups in urban planning.

Minister Cort attended and
participated in the first ever panel for
Finance and Development Corporation
Ministers convened by the United Nations
Commission on Sustainable Development
(CSD). He also held a series of bilateral
meetings with his counterparts.

Other members of the discussion
panel included: H.E. Ms. Carin Jamtin,
Minister for International Development
Cooperation, Sweden; Mr. Len Good,
Chairman and CEO, Global Environment
Facility; Mr. Suma Chakrabarti, Permanent
Secretary, Department for International
Development, UK; and Mr. Adolfo A.
Franco, USAID Assistant Administrator for
Latin America and the Caribbean.

Opening presentations were
made by: Mr. lan Johnson, Vice President,
Environmentally and Socially Sustainable
Development, World Bank; and Mr. Carlos
Fortin, OIC, United Nations Conference on
Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

The panel was inaugurated by the
Secretary-General of the United Nations,
Mr. Kofi Annan, who delivered the opening
remarks and was co-moderated by the
Minister of Finance of South Africa, Trevor
Manuel and the Minister for International
Cooperation of Norway, Ms. Hilde
Johnson.

The CSD, which ended on Friday,
April 22, adopted a series of policy
decisions on practical measures and
options on water, sanitation and human
settlements.


Antigua and Barbuda to
receive twenty
community centres

While commenting on his
recent visit to Nairobi, Kenya in Africa
to attend the 20th Session of the
Governing Council of UN Habitat,
Minister of Housing, Culture & Social
Transformation, Hilson Baptiste
stated that Antigua and Barbuda is to
be the recipient of 20 community
centres, which will be constructed at
strategic points around the island.

The Governing Council of
UN Habitat is seeking to eradicate
slums in parts of the world by the
year 2010.

Minister Baptiste said that
after much investigation and touring
of one of Africa's major slums, he
believes that Antigua and Barbuda
does not really have any slum areas
and those areas that require
development, like Booby Ally, can be
rectified.

"When I saw the living
conditions of Africa's slums, I thought
it best that UN Habitat should spend
the money on persons who are more
in need, therefore, I changed my
approach from housing allowance to
community centres," the Minister
explained.

The Minister said the
centres will provide an avenue for
community development and he
hopes that the community centres
will feature day care facilities,
learning centres, gym and libraries.
He said with the new facilities, the
community would be further
enhanced.

The Minister said that due
diligence is yet to be done, and the
locations are yet to be decided.


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GOVERNMENT N

Government take steps in
making Antigua and
Barbuda a
Multilingual Society

The Government of Antigua
and Barbuda has moved closer towards
implementing its educational policy of
making the entire nation multilingual.

During his official visit to the
Republic of Cuba, Prime Minister
Baldwin Spencer requested assistance
from the Cuban government in the
provision of tutors in the area of Spanish,
the second official language of the
Caribbean.

The Prime Minister also
expressed the government's interest in
short courses in Spanish, including the
possibility of teaching that language on
radio and television.

The Cuban government agreed
to collaborate in the teaching of Spanish
Language both for primary education
and for professors.

In the long term, the Baldwin
Spencer administration plans to make
available language instruction in well-
equipped language laboratories, to the
nation's young people and interested
adults.



PM Spencer at
Inauguration of Caribbean
Court of Justice CCJ

On 16th April Prime Minister
Baldwin Spencer joined regional Heads,
members of the judiciary and diplomats
at the inauguration of the Caribbean
Court of Justice (CCJ) at Queen's Hall,
St Ann's, Trinidad and Tobago.


*: RI. iim


.'Trme jlnitsrer satawLn .pencer jpannea vy jusrtce
!Minister Colin Derrick on his right andRegistrar of the
ifigh Court Joanne Freeland-'Roberts anc Attorney General
andfMinister of LegafASffairs, Justin Simon Q.C. on his Ceft


The event saw Prime Ministers
from 10 Caribbean countries, several
Attorneys General and other
distinguished guests from the
Commonwealth arriving at the Hall that
was specially decorated for the occasion.

Following the ceremony, Prime
Minister Spencer said that the
inauguration of the CCJ marked a
significant milestone in the history of
CARICOM. "This signals our intent to
truly unify the nations of the region.
Although Antigua and Barbuda will only
for the time being participate in the Court
in its Original jurisdiction, we see this as
a significant event," Prime Minister
Spencer noted.

The CCJ will function as a court
of original jurisdiction for most of the
Caricom countries under the Revised
Treaty of Chaguaramas in the operation
of the Caricom Single Market and
Economy (CSME).


President of the CCJ, Michael
de la Bastide, introduced the justices to
the audience, following which Justice
Adrian Saunders of St Vincent and the
Grenadines and Justice Desiree
Bernard of Guyana took the oath before
President Richards of Trinidad and
Tobago. Professor David Hayton of
Britain and Justice Jacob Wit of the
Netherlands Antilles will be
administered the Oath of Office in July.
Justice Rolston Nelson of Trinidad and
Tobago and Justice Duke Pollard of
Guyana took the Oath of Office earlier
this year.

Also attending the Ceremony
representing Antigua and Barbuda
were the country's Attorney General
and Minister of Legal Affairs, Justin
Simon, Q.C., Justice Minister Colin

Registrar at the
High Court Joanne
Freeland-Roberts.


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GOVERNMENT


Issu Ap.e m r i0


Education Minister attends
CARICOM Education
Ministers Retreat

On 2nd and 3rd May Education
Minister Bertrand Joseph joined his
regional counterparts at a Caribbean
Community (CARICOM) Retreat of
Ministers with responsibility for
Education in Georgetown, Guyana.

The gathering discussed issues
related to Secondary Education and the
Rationalization of Tertiary Education in
the Region.

At a conference of Heads of
Government in 1997, a vision was
outlined for Education and Human
Resource Development in the region and
several specific targets were set for
various levels of education. Among
these were:

15% enrolment of the post-
secondary age cohort in
tertiary level education by
the year 2005

Universal quality secondary
education be targeted for
the year 2005 with
attendant annual targets
set

In response to this mandate,
Member States have put in place
measures for ensuring increased access
to tertiary education for their citizens and
some Member States have already
achieved and surpassed the enrolment
targets.

The measures have included
the establishment of new institutions and
the expansion of offerings and remit of
others, e.g. in the upgrading of
Community Colleges to offer degree
programmes, franchising of year 1 and 2
University of the West Indies (UWI)


programmes in specific areas to
Community Colleges e.g. in Antigua and
Barbuda, St. Lucia and St. Kitts and Nevis.
In addition, there has been increased
employment of Distance Education
modalities for the delivery of tertiary level
programmes.

The Meeting is also expected to
discuss issues related to the agenda of the
Fourth Meeting of Ministers of Education of
Latin America and the Caribbean to be
convened in Trinidad and Tobago from
August 10th to 12th 2005.



Social Transformation plans
survey of Living conditions

A two-man team from Kairi
Consultants Limited of Trinidad and
Tobago, recently concluded a
familiarization trip ahead of a Survey of
Living Conditions in Antigua and Barbuda
set to begin shortly.

The survey is a collaborative
effort between the Caribbean Development
Bank, CDB and the Ministry of Housing,
Culture & Social Transformation.

The Survey of Living Conditions
will seek to obtain baseline data to help the
Ministry of Social Transformation plan
programmes and policies aimed at
improving the livelihood of the general
population, while at the same time unearth
shortcomings in the Government social
services.

The two-man team comprising Dr
Ralph Henry and Edwin St. Catherine met
stakeholders of the project, outlined the
necessity for the survey and explained how
the information obtained should help the
Government develop its social structure.

Dr. Henry, speaking to the
National Assessment Team, which was
appointed by Cabinet and included
members from the private and public


sectors, said the project is very
important to the development of any
country. He said with the information
provided, Government can then
make the necessary appeal to the
CDB for grants or assistance to
further strengthen its services. Dr
Henry said if Government does not
know the areas of deficiency then
they cannot adequately meet the
needs of their residents, as projects
may be directed into the wrong areas.

Minister of Housing, Culture
& Social Transformation, Hilson
Baptiste said this new survey would
help the Government meet its
mandate and provide continued
improvement in the standard of living
through its social services
programmes. He added that if
persons co-operate fully with the
survey, it should help the
Government understand the real
problems nationals face daily. He
continued, "Once we know the needs
and concerns of our people then we
will be in a better position to help,
thereby further improving their
standard of living."

He added that his Ministry
has as its motto "The social
consciousness of Antigua and
Barbuda" and his Government
believes that every 'pocket' of
poverty must be reduced or totally
eradicated, adding that no one
should be left out from advancing up
the 'ladder of success'.

Preparatory work has
commenced and the entire survey is
expected to last approximately one
year and will include fieldwork, data
collection and analysis.


15 Thayer Street, London W1U 3JT
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Is N. A i


NATIONALS' CORNER



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Ja lTX ^'


A HISTORY OF ANTIGUA:
THE UNSUSPECTED ISLE.

This book, written by Brian
Dyde and published by Macmillan
Education in 2000, not only covers the
history of Antigua from pre-Columbian
days until the achievement of
Independence in 1981 but also deals
with events over the same period in
both Barbuda and Redonda.

The author is an Englishman
who, having known the island for over
40 years and being married to an
Antiguan, has taken great care to treat
what could be thought of as potentially
dry historical material from a balanced
cultural perspective and to write for the
widest possible readership.

His 360-page book covers the
pre-Columbian migrations, colonialism,
slavery and the plantation economy,
the rise of the trade union movement,
Associated Statehood, Independence,
and the transition from an agricultural
to a tourist economy in an interesting
and highly-readable manner. As well as
being illustrated with maps,
reproductions of paintings and prints,
and many photographs, the text also
contains numerous apt contemporary
quotations from each significant period
of Antigua's history. It is a book which
will appeal to anyone with any
connection with Antigua, or with an
interest in West Indian history.


The author has also written the
definitive visitor's guide to Antigua (now
in its third edition) as well as a history of
the West India Regiments.

His book, ISBN number 0 333
75169 8, is available from any good
bookshop, priced at 17.95


TOURISM NEWS


New Air Services Agreement
established between Antigua
and Barbuda and The
Netherlands Antilles

Representatives of the
Governments of Antigua and Barbuda and
The Netherlands Antilles recently
concluded discussions in Curacao for a
new air services agreement aimed at
liberalizing air transport between the two
countries.

The new agreement will replace
one agreed to in 1994 that limited the
number of flights that could be operated
between the two countries and also
contained a number of other restrictive
practices relating to pricing and capacity.

Under the terms of the new
agreement, airlines designated by Antigua
and Barbuda and the Netherlands Antilles,
will be able to operate under an Open
Skies regime allowing almost unrestricted
access to each other's markets, and will
allow for market driven flexibility in relation
to pricing and other commercial
arrangements.

The new agreement also seeks to
strengthen cooperation between the two
countries in relation to aviation security and
safety by incorporating requirements
reflecting current international legal
obligations in these areas. This follows
recent reductions in air service by carriers
from The Netherlands Antilles and other


regional carriers, and is expected to
result in increased commercial,
tourism, cultural, and trading
relations between the Eastern
Caribbean and the territories of the
Netherlands Antilles. The agreement
will come into effect once
government authorities in both
countries have completed the
various legal requirements.

The Antigua and Barbuda
delegation consisted of Mr. Brian
Challenger, Technical Coordinator in
the Ministry of Tourism and Aviation;
Mr. Leon Smith Acting Aerodrome
Superintendent at the V.C. Bird
International Airport; Mr. Edward
Gilkes, Acting Chief Operations
Officer of Caribbean Star Airlines;
Mr. Wilbur Edwards, Director of
Network and Sales at LIAT (1974)
Ltd; and Mr. Sam Waithe, Aviation
Consultant to Caribbean Star
Airlines. Dr. Siegfried Francisco,
Director of Civil Aviation of the
Netherlands Antilles, led his
country's delegation.



Tourism figures show
growth for the
first quarter of 2005

Antigua and Barbuda is
continuing to see growth in the
tourism industry as indicated by
visitor arrival figures to date for the
year 2005.

A 1.2% increase has been
recorded for the period January
through March 2005, when
compared to the same period in
2004, with March recording a healthy
9.5 % increase over last year.
Tourist arrivals in January and
February experienced an increase of
1.1% and a fall of 7.2% respectively.


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TOURISM NEI


According to the acting Director
General within the Ministry of Tourism,
Lorraine Headley, this pattern can be
attributed to the increased presence of
Antigua and Barbuda in trade fairs and
expos such as the recently concluded ITB
in Berlin, with a particular focus on
attracting European visitors.

The country, which has a strong
UK marketing drive, will continue its
extensive campaign there later this year
by participating in World Travel Market
2005.

"The success of Tourism
Minister, Harold Lovell in securing the
return of Condor to Antigua in November
will contribute towards increased airlift,
with expected increased visitor arrivals
from Germany as well as surrounding
European countries," Miss Headley noted.

The Canadian market has also
seen strong growth with a 15.1% increase
experienced in 2005. A targeted public
relations campaign being planned for the
North American market within the next few
months is expected to contribute to
significant growth in the remaining months
of 2005.

With activities such as the
launch of the 2005 Carnival celebration,
and Cricket just around the corner, a busy
season for Tourism is anticipated. Plans
are underway to improve the visitor
experience during peak period.

With projections for this year's
tourist industry seemingly positive, all
stakeholders are being urged to put their
best foot forward in ensuring that this year
continues to record positive results.

Ministry of Tourism provides
training for small hotel
owners

Recognising the role of small
locally owned hotels in the


accommodation sector, the Ministry of
Tourism in collaboration with the
Organisation of American States (OAS)
provided a special training opportunity for
small hotel owner/ managers.

Focusing on the need for small
hotel owners and managers to be
proficient in all aspects of hotel
operations, this comprehensive four day
workshop, which began on Tuesday May
3 and ended on Friday May 6 at the
Antigua and Barbuda Hospitality Training
Institute, covered Hotel Management and
Operations, and Food and Beverage
Management with a view to providing
existing and new owners with the
necessary skills to assist in the smooth
functioning of their properties.

The major objective of the
programme was to improve techniques
and approaches for hoteliers through
which improved performance and
profitability can be achieved.

Director of Product Development
at the Ministry of Tourism, Lorraine
Headley, sees the training as critical in
improving the standards for the small
hotel sector, "We are actively seeking to
improve the operations of local hoteliers to
ensure their continued viability within the
industry. We recognize the important role
that such accommodation will play in 2007
for Cricket World Cup and we will be
ensuring that these and other
stakeholders have the opportunity to train
in order to benefit fully from increased
opportunities in tourism."

At the completion of the
programme participants received their
internationally recognized certification
from the American Hotel & Lodging
Association (AH&LA).

The training was conducted by
OAS trainer, Bennett Brown.


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15 Thayer Street, London W1U 3JT
Tel: 020 7486 7073 Fax: 020 7486 9970


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