Group Title: Official newsletter of the Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Title: Official newsletter
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 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: February 2007
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Bibliographic ID: UF00099220
Volume ID: VID00024
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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The Antigua and Barbuda High Commission


ISSUE No.118


February 2007


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2nd Floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP
Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


inside
BMI's Chairman contributes to Good Shepherd Home for
Children (page 3)
Handing-over ceremony of the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium
(pages 4 & 5)
LIAT, Caribbean Star implement combined flight schedule
(page 9)
Police to get state-of-the-art mobile command unit ahead of
Cricket World Cup (page 12)


hiil'. 1 1 1 iiiii'! o1mi-barbuda.com







A MESSAGE FROM HIS EXCELLENCY

DR CARL ROBERTS, HIGH COMMISSIONER


Dear Readers,


There is a feeling of excitement in the air in
Antigua and Barbuda these days. A feeling of pride and
anticipation as the date for hosting thousands of visitors
to our lovely islands draws near. As you turn the pages
of this newsletter, I can just imagine the swell of joy and
warm feelings which fill your heart.

On the 10th February, the new Sir Vivian
Richards Cricket Stadium was handed over to the
Government and people of Antigua and Barbuda at an
impressive ceremony on the
grounds of the new stadium. As
many as seven persons cut a
symbolic ribbon in front of the
plaque specially erected to
commemorate the occasion. The
Chinese Ambassador spoke
glowingly of their happiness in
bringing to reality and on time, the
completion of the stadium. The
accompanying fireworks was just
as impressive. The other activities
Symbolic cutt
in preparation for the hosting of


ing


2nd Floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP
Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


the leg of the Super 8 Series. Work is in train repairing
our roads, completing the landscaping for the stadium,
finalising the outfitting of several rooms at the Mount St
John Hospital, renovating the departure and arrival
lounges at the V C Bird Intemational Airport. Yes,
Antigua and Barbuda is a hive of activities.

During all this the teams have begun to arrive in
the Region. The Bermuda team has been in Antigua and
Barbuda, making their final preparations for their
matches. The full excitement starts with a series of
warm-up matches on March 5th.

Sunday 11th March is the date for the Opening
Ceremony in Jamaica. This will be followed by the first
set of Group Stage Matches in Jamaica between the
West Indies and Pakistan on the 13th and other matches
in St Kitts/Nevis and St Lucia on the 14th. Sale of tickets
has been going exceptionally good at all venues. The
West Indies is on the verge of showing the rest of the
world, true Caribbean hospitality, and demonstrate that
we can host major international events.

If this does not make you feel proud to be a West
Indian then perhaps that feeling may come upon you
when you tur on your TV and see your favourite
destination in full colour, in all its island glory.

I feel that sense of pride even as I write these few
words. I pray that all will go well and that with God's help
we will have a successful tournament undisturbed by any
adverse events. May we all offer a prayer for the safety
of all peoples in the region and a safe return to their
respective homeland.

Finally it has been stated that
the host team has never won the
ICC CWC. Let us also pray for
our team that their success at the
finals in Barbados will break this
/ trend once and for all.


Dr Carl Roberts
of the ribbon High Commissioner


WIIlp .iiyiii. ,-barbuda.com











BMI's Chairman contributes
to Good Shepherd Home
for children

Prime Minister the Hon. Baldwin
Spencer recently made a presentation of
a cheque for two thousand pound
sterling to the Good Shepherd Home for
Children on behalf of the Chairman of
BMI Sir Michael Bishop.

During the presentation
ceremony to Mrs. Mary-Rose Knight of
the institution, Prime Minister Spencer
said that the funds were donated by Sir
Michael during a cricket match at
Bowdon cricket Club in Cheshire
England organized by the Antigua and
Barbuda High Commission in London as
part of Cricket Week.

The initiative was developed to
promote the island's involvement and
on-island developments for the ICC
Cricket World Cup 2007 and included Sir
Vivian Richards, Richie Richardson,
Curtly Ambrose, Sir Clive Lloyd, some of
the current players for the national team;
Wilden Cornwall, Carl Simon and Gavin
Tonge as well as the Lashings World XI
team, which reads like a who's who of
great cricketing legends.

Prime Minister Spencer said
that he was pleased to present the
donation to the Good Shepherd Home
because the Home is imperative to the
country in providing shelter and care to
those children who are without parental
guidance or support and those subjected
to abuse or abandonment.

"Donations such as this are
crucial in making sure that the children
receive education, counseling and the
life skills they need to reach their
potential in adulthood and society," he
said.

Prime Minister Spencer also
thanked the employees of the Good


Shepherd Home for Children for their
hard work and perseverance in providing
excellent service for the children of
Antigua and Barbuda. "We hope that
people continue to donate to this much
needed resource well into the future.
Once again my sincerest appreciation is
extended to Sir Michael for his generous
contribution to this institution and to the
people of our beloved nation," Prime
Minister Spencer concluded.

Bishop Donald Reece of the
Roman Catholic Church, which manages
the institution, said that since 1984, the
Home has created a safe, family-style
environment, a significant improvement
on the traditional institutional care homes
of the past.

"The St. Vincent de Paul
Society which oversees the running of
the Home is concerned with the up
liftment of people and imparting values
so that they can live out lives to be good
citizens and Christians and we are
presently seeking ways and means to
expand the Good Shepherd Home which
is currently bursting at the seams and so
this donation is very timely indeed,"
noted Bishop Reece.


"We are very happy that Sir
Michael Bishop is able to extend his
munificence all the way down here to
Antigua and we are happy that he saw
it fit to designate the Good Shepherd
Home for that purpose," he said.

Also attending the
presentation ceremony was the wife of
the Antigua and Barbuda High
Commissioner in London Mrs. Roberts,
Mr. Lenny Coupel of the St.Vincent de
Paul Society and Sister Anne of the
Carmelite Sisters.


Antigua to assist UK in
developing international
remote gambling
regulations and legislation

On February 8 Antigua and
Barbuda's Financial Services
Regulatory Commission, Division of
Gaming announced that the country
expects to play a key role in developing
international regulations and legislation
for remote gambling following
publication of the UK Government's


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP 3


Members of the St Vincent de Paul Society with
Prime Minister Spencer and Mrs Roberts


Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


www.antigua-barbuda.com











communique regarding the 2006
International Summit on Remote
Gambling.

The communique, released by
the UK's Department of Culture, Media
and Sport (DCMS) on Monday 29th
January, highlighted the approval by the
Summit's delegates for the proposal to
set up an expert working group to advise
on the scope for developing international
minimum standards for regulating
remote gambling.

The Honourable L. Errol Cort,
Minister of Finance and the Economy
commented, "Antigua offers its unique
experience and insight wholeheartedly in
developing regulatory standards for the
international remote gambling industry
as part of the expert working group
proposed by the DCMS."

Kaye McDonald, Antigua's
Director of Gaming, also highlighted
Antigua's credentials for regulation of
their online gambling industry, adding,
"The regulations that Antigua has in
place for online gambling are respected
globally and have been a contributing
factor in winning the WTO ruling against
the US in 2005."

It is widely known that
regulations put in place by Antigua and
Barbuda are more stringent than those
that the US imposes on its own legal
gambling industries. The US recently
admitted suffering a new setback in the
long running trade dispute with Antigua
over the provision of offshore gambling
within the United States, having,
according to the press agent for the
United States Trade Representative,
been on the losing side of a recent WTO
report assessing the status of US
compliance with the original adverse
ruling from the WTO issued in 2005.
While the new report is not officially
released until mid February, the US has
already publicly stated that the WTO
panel did not agree with the United


States that they had taken the
necessary steps to comply.

Official handing-over
ceremony for the Sir
Vivian Richards Cricket
Stadium

On Saturday 10th February
the government of the People's Republic
of China officially handed over the Sir
Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium to the
Government of Antigua and Barbuda
during a specially organized ceremony at
the site.

Prime Minister the Hon. Baldwin
Spencer accepted the keys to the facility
and remarked that with the unwavering
support of the People's Republic of
China, the brightest and best minds in
Antigua and Barbuda were able to work
in harmony to produce a structure that
not only symbolizes what binds
Antiguans and Barbudans as a people,


I


but one that exhibits the skills and
craftsmanship of the people of two
continents that are separated by water
but joined by friendship.

"The government of Antigua
and Barbuda salute the many committed
individuals for their involvement in the
project. The involvement of the
government of the People's Republic of
China underscores the excellent bilateral
relationship that has developed between


our two countries. It also represents
another concrete step in deepening the
relationship between the people of our
two countries," Prime Minister Spencer
said.

Speaking at the ceremony
were Deputy Director General of the
Department of Foreign Aid of China
Wang Rensheng, the General
Manager of the China Civil Engineering
Construction Corporation Lin Rongxin
and President of the Antigua and
Barbuda Cricket Association Enoch
Lewis.

Chairman of World
Cup Antigua Inc. Minister
John Maginley speaking
at the function said that
the challenge of having
the country's national
infrastructure ready has
been a great learning
experience for the entire
country and people.

"The specific
challenge of the preparation of the
stadium, airport, the health
infrastructure, the road works, the
specific challenges of accommodation,
transportation, finance and human
resource preparation have forced our
people to operate on a completely new
level. The fact that we have risen to the
challenge is a tremendous testament
to the resilience of our people," he said.

During the ceremony, Prime
Minister Spencer and Ambassador of


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP 4


Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


www.antigua-barbuda.com


Lhi


























the People's Republic of China Her
Excellency Madame Ren Xiaoping
signed a number of agreements for the
final drawdown of 20 million yuan from
the grant to construct the facility, a
US$588,000 agreement for video
screens and a Technical Team
Agreement which provides for an expert
Chinese technical team to remain in
Antigua throughout World Cup Cricket.

Antigua and Barbuda's
Ambassador to China and Chairman of
the Inter-Governmental Working Group,
who managed the construction of the
facility, praised the many local
businessmen and women who supported
the venture from beginning to
completion. "We have now completed a
task that many doubted could be
accomplished. You have contributed to


an historical event. A
vision has been
turned into reality. A
reality that all of
Antigua and Barbuda
can be proud. Let us
now with confidence
move forward
together and be host
to the most exciting
games of CWC 2007,"
he said.

Sir Vivian
Richards, Antigua and Barbuda's
National Hero and cricketing star whose
name the stadium bears also gave


remarks at the function and was the
feature of a video profile during the
event.
The event culminated with a
grand fire works display and a concert
featuring the Red Hott Burning Flames,
Taxic Band, LA Crew and calypsonians
Short Shirt and Swallow among others.

The Sir Vivian Richards
Cricket Stadium was constructed by
the People's Republic of China from a
grant of over US $55 million. It has a
seating capacity of 20,000 of which
10,000 are permanent.


Government signs
partnership agreement with
Polytechnic University


On February 23, the
Government of Antigua and Barbuda
signed a partnership agreement with
Polytechnic University of New York,
whereby the latter will offer six (6) annual
scholarships -- at the undergraduate and
graduate levels -- to qualified students
from Antigua and Barbuda at its main


campus in Brooklyn, New York,
beginning in September 2007.

Mr. Maurice Merchant,
Chairman of the Independence
Scholarship Committee, signed on
behalf of the Government, and Ms. TC
Westcott, Vice President, Finance and
Administration signed on behalf of
Polytechnic University. Dean of the
Graduate School and Associate Provost
Dr. Sunil Kumar and Provost Dr. Erich
Kunhardt were also present at the
signing.


Merchant also thanked
Ambassador to the United Nations Dr.
John Ashe for initiating the discussions
with Dr. Sunil Kumar. "Ambassador
Ashe has been extremely supportive of
Prime Minister Spencer's mission of
providing higher education to the
nation's youth which he says creates a
culture of excellence that positions
Antigua and Barbuda to take
advantage of the many opportunities
that exist on the local, regional and
international scale," he said

Continued on page 6


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP 5


Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


www.antigua-barbuda.com

























Foreign Service Officer
responsible for Trade Issues
Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
Dia Christian


Antigua and Barbuda
participates in meeting on
EPA between CARIFORUM
and the European
Community

Antigua and Barbuda was
represented at the recently held 2nd
Meeting of the Technical Working Group
on Legal and Institutional Issues for the
Economic Partnership Agreements
(EPA) between the CARIFORUM and
the European Community.

Foreign Service Officer within
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and
International Trade, Dia Christian, who
attended the meeting said that a wide
range of issues relating to the upcoming
negotiations between CARIFORUM and
the European Community were
addressed.

He said these included the
status of negotiations on Legal and
Institutional Issues, the identification of
crucial issues arising from the previous
Technical Negotiating Groups meetings,
the critical issues facing CARIFORUM at
this juncture of the negotiations, the draft
text on CARIFORUM regional integration
prepared by the Caribbean Regional


Negotiating Machinery CRNM and
consideration of CARIFORUM and EC
draft legal texts on Legal and
Institutional provisions, General and
Final Provisions and Dispute
Settlement.

"All these issues are to be
considered by each Member State
through national consultation.
Responses, recommendations and
comments will be submitted to the
- Regional Negotiators before the next
Trade Negotiating Group meeting in
Brussels during the month of March,"
Christian said.

He noted that the Technical
Working Group meeting also looked
at issues relating to the examination
of CARIFORUM (Caribbean Forum
of countries of CARICOM to include
the Dominican Republic) and Joint
Commitments and collective
obligations in the EPA

According to Mr. Christian,
"the Technical Working Group
(TWG) which comprise officials from
member states, experts from
regional secretariats, private sector,
academics and serviced by Regional c
Lead Negotiators agreed to make S
appropriate recommendations as to Me
the treatment of development issues wi
in the EPA.

The role of the TWG is to
develop regional negotiating positions
and mandates that are submitted to the
Council of Trade and Economic
Development (COTED) for consideration
and action. "It is at these groups that the
bulk of the technical work is done, and
where the difficult issues are thrashed
out before being put forward to the
political directorate." Dia Christian
concluded.


Continued from page 5


He also stated that the
Government is delighted that
Polytechnic University has decided to
partner with them to educate the
people of Antigua and Barbuda by the
provision of scholarships.

In addition to the partnership
agreement, the Polytechnic University
has also agreed to assist the
government in developing distance
learning capabilities in Antigua and
Barbuda, and will be sending
instructors to the twin-island nation to
conduct courses in various fields of
study during the summer months.


chairman of the Independence
scholarship Committee Maurice
rchant signing the agreement
th TC Westcott of Polytechinc
University

The University offers an
innovative curriculum that introduces
students to engineering in the
freshmen year and emphasizes
projects requiring teamwork and a
multidisciplinary approach, and its
graduate division has a strong
international reputation. The University
is among the most successful
institutions in the United States in
producing science and engineering
graduates who go on to earn PhD
degrees.


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP 6


www.antigua-barbuda.com


Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486











Antigua and Barbuda
excluded from the
expansion of some
categories of persons in the
Free Movement of Skilled
Community Nationals

Antigua and Barbuda has been
excluded from the group of CARICOM
countries that will be required to
implement the free movement of non-
graduate teachers and nurses.

Prime Minister of Antigua and
Barbuda the Hon. Baldwin Spencer said
that on day one of the Eighteenth Inter-
Sessional Meeting of the Conference of
Heads of Government of the Caribbean
Community, leaders agreed on the
country's exclusion from the list because
of the existence of degree granting and
higher level institutions that presently
train teachers and nurses in Antigua and
Barbuda.

The Council for Human and
Social Development, an organ of the
Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas,
"Professional Nurses are defined as
persons who have successfully
completed basic or higher level training
for nurses and who are registered with
the General Nursing Council of a
CARICOM Member State and are
designated Registered Nurses."

Teachers are defined as
persons who have successfully
completed an approved pre-service or
in-service teacher preparation
programme from an
accredited/recognized institution offering
teacher education.

During the discussions on Free
Movement of Skilled Nationals, Prime
Minister Spencer also made out a case
for the exclusion of Antigua and Barbuda
from the list of countries that will be


required to facilitate the free movement
of artisans when it commences as soon
as the Caribbean Vocational
Qualification Model is launched by July
this year.

Prime Minister Spencer said
that Antigua and Barbuda is a unique
case because of its history of having an
open door policy and hence he believes
that a study of the Antiguan situation, pre
and post free movement, should be
carried out to ascertain how best the
country can meet its treaty obligations.
The Heads agreed that Antigua and
Barbuda should be exempted and that
the CARICOM Secretariat will provide
assistance in carrying out the study
requested.

The Heads also agreed to
implement the decision that CARICOM
Nationals entering with a Skills
Certificate issued by another Member
State should be allowed to work
immediately, while the receiving Member
State verifies the qualifications of the
holder.

It was also noted that Heads
also requested that the Council of
Ministers responsible for National
Security and Law Enforcement advise on
the possible standardization of the
requirements for police records in order
to have standardized requirements for all
aspects of the free movement of skills
regime.


Prime Minister Spencer
says Trade Liberalization
must not be to the
detriment of the region

Prime Minister of Antigua and
Barbuda the Hon. Baldwin Spencer said
that trade liberalization should not be to
the detriment of the countries within the
region.


Hon. Baldwin Spencer
Prime Minister of Antigua
and Barbuda

Making an intervention during
the discussions on External Trade
Negotiations at the 18th Inter-
Sessional Meeting of CARICOM
Heads held in St Vincent and the
Grenadines, Prime Minister Spencer
said that through trade liberalization
and negotiations like the Economic
Partnership Agreement (EPA), the
region must be strong on the
importance of development being
tangible and real.

"The granting of technical
assistance and the exchange of
experts by themselves cannot sustain
our fragile economies, many of which
are without mineral wealth. We accept
that we must become competitive, but
there must be a reasonable period of
graduation with adequate support
mechanisms to allow our enterprises,
industries and sectors to retool, Prime
Minister Spencer noted.

He noted that as leaders of
the region, Heads must have an input
in the articulations of the development
dimension or Chapter of any Economic


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP 7


Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


www.antigua-barbuda.com





























Ambassador Clarence Henry (cen
discussion with Governor of the
Caribbean Central Bank, Sir Dwig]
(left) and Ambassador Colin Mi

Partnership Agreement, noting that if the
region is unable to properly articulate its
development Chapter, it will not be able
to quantify the needs of the region.

Antigua and Barbuda recently
presented to CARICOM elements of
what should constitute its development
dimension and Chapter in any Economic
Partnership Agreement with the
European Union.

Trade Coordinator in the
Ministry of Finance, Ambassador Dr.
Clarence Henry who was also a part of
Antigua and Barbuda's delegation
attending the 18th Inter-Sessional
Meeting supported the Prime Minister's
arguments.

Ambassador Henry told
regional Heads that CARICOM must
work with the European Union as agreed
on a timetable, but if CARIFORUM
(Caribbean Forum) or CARICOM
interests are not adequately covered,
Antigua and Barbuda will have difficulty
signing the document. He said that in
that regard, there is the need for a good
agreement which must have the input of
all stakeholders.


Si "Therefore, there is
need for greater public
j consultation/sensitization
,, on the opportunities and
challenges of the
i Economic Partnership
Agreement (EPA). The
Caribbean Regional
Negotiating Machinery,
CRNM needs to urgently
embark on a region wide
programme of public
awareness and
acceptance of any
Eventual agreement,"
Ambassador Henry
tre) in pointed out.
Eastern
ht Venner He told Heads that the
urdoch CRNM should copy what
was undertaken when the
region was revising the CARICOM
Treaty bringing ordinary citizens on
board.

Ambassador Henry also stated
that the Caribbean must build a more
mature relationship with its development
partners, one which includes reduced
waivers or preferences.

Antigua and Barbuda
establishes formal
diplomatic relations with the
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

The governments of Antigua
and Barbuda and the Kingdom of Saudi
Arabia has established formal diplomatic
relations with the signing of a Protocol by
their respective representatives to the
United Nations.

"As two friendly, peace-loving
nations, today's historic step of
establishing diplomatic ties will
undoubtedly contribute to our mutual
goal of enhancing economic ties
between our countries," said Antigua and
Barbuda's Ambassador to the United


Nations, Dr. John W. Ashe, who signed
the Protocol and the corresponding
Joint Communique on behalf of
Antigua and Barbuda.

"My government welcomes
this development and it looks forward
to strengthening fruitful cooperation in
a variety of fields between our two
countries," said Abdullatif Sallam,
Charge d' Affaires of the Saudi Mission
to the United Nations, who signed both
instruments on behalf of his
government.

With this latest signing,
Antigua and Barbuda has now
established diplomatic relations with all
six countries that make up the Gulf
Cooperation Council (GCC). Saudi
Arabia, the largest GCC member, lies
at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and
Africa and extends from the Red Sea
in the west to the Arabian Gulf in the
east. It is bordered on the north by
Jordan, Iraq and Kuwait, on the south
by Yemen and Oman, and on the east
by the Gulf States of United Arab
Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain.

International Women's Day

8th March 2007


International Women's Day
is an occasion marked by women's
groups around the world; it is
commemorated at the United
Nations and is designated in many
countries as a national holiday.
When women on all continents,
often divided by national
boundaries and by ethnic,
linguistic, cultural, economic and
political differences, come together
to celebrate their Day, they can look
back to tradition that represents at
least nine decades of struggle for
equality, justice, peace and
development.


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP 8


www.antigua-barbuda.com


Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486











LIAT, Caribbean Star
implement combined flight
schedule

Schedule includes improved timing,
connectivity to benefit regional air
travellers

The much anticipated
commercial agreement between LIAT
(1974) Ltd. and Caribbean Star Airlines
Ltd. that combines the flight operations of
both carriers for the first time has
officially begun. The commercial
agreement and its attendant new
schedule, which features improved flight
times and connectivity benefiting the
travelling public, are key steps toward
finalizing a proposed merger of LIAT and
Caribbean Star.

On February 1, top executives
representing both carriers were present
at airports across the region greeting
passengers and providing customer
assistance to facilitate the transition.
Mark Darby, CEO of LIAT,
commemorated the event, stating, "This
is a significant day for both airlines.
Teams from both LIAT and Caribbean
Star have been working feverishly over
the past few weeks to ensure that a
smooth transition takes place. We're
looking forward to the benefits this
alliance will bring to our customers, staff
and shareholders."

The commercial agreement of
LIAT and Caribbean Star means the
flights of both airlines will be marketed as
LIAT and identified by the "LI" airline
designator although some planes will be
clearly branded as Caribbean Star
Airlines. Both LIAT and Caribbean Star
will continue to operate as separate
carriers under their own management
until the proposed merger of the airlines
is implemented.

William "Skip" Barnette,
President and CEO of Caribbean Star


Airlines noted, "Clearly, we believe that
this combined schedule is the best thing
for our customers as it will allow us to
provide a broader range of services;
better timing and improved connections.
A lot of thought and planning has gone
into this new schedule over the past few
months and we are happy to see it finally
come to fruition."

Darby and Barnette jointly
added, "We understand that there have
been some concerns expressed about
our fare levels which we believe are
unfounded. The fare structure in use is
the same one that we have been using
since early December. We are
approaching a very busy time with
Cricket World Cup and Easter and the
limited seats offered at the lower prices
are quickly booked. If our customers can
be flexible with their date and time of
travel, and book further in advance,
cheap fares are available."

Darby continued, "We
constantly monitor fares and as
promised last week, now that the new
schedule has become established and
patterns of travel demand have become
clear, we have refined our fare program
and reintroduced lower fares across the
system you only have to look at our
website, call our call centre or visit your
travel agent to see the great fares that
we have on offer. Be on the lookout for
special promotions in the near future."


Antigua and Barbuda to
receive assistance from the
Republic of Cuba in
Heritage Site Restoration

Minister of Tourism Harold
Lovell recently led a five member
delegation from the Ministry of Tourism
to the Republic of Cuba, where they
sought technical assistance in the


Fort James


development of tourism in Antigua and
Barbuda.

Following discussions with
Manuel Marrero Cruz Minister of
Tourism in Cuba, the decision was
reached to assist with the restoration of
Fort James and other heritage sites on
Antigua.

Under the agreement, a team
of Cuban specialists will journey to the
Antigua and Barbuda later this year.

The Cuban Minister indicated
that, the group will visit the fort, make
an assessment and advise on the most
effective means to proceed with the
restoration of this and other historical
sites. They will also identify how best to
convert the sites for tourism purposes.

Antigua and Barbuda's
Minister of Tourism, is keen on
receiving assistance by the specialists
on this venture, having expressed full
confidence in the government
empowered Office of the Historian,
who have been instrumental in the
restoration and conservation work in
Old Havana since 1993.

Old Havana, which was
declared a World Heritage site by the
United Nations Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO)
in 1982, is considered one of the most
dynamic cultural, tourist and financial
centres on the Caribbean island.


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP 9


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www.antigua-barbuda.com































Minister Harold Lovell, Minister of Tourism (second
from left) while in Havana, Cuba


"With the restoration of
historical sites on Antigua and Barbuda
and the diversification of our product into
the heritage tourism market, we can
expect an enhanced visitor experience
resulting in increased visitor arrivals,
increased length of stay, greater foreign
exchange earnings, and an improvement
in the quality of life for residents of
Antigua and Barbuda," said the Minister.

During the discussions,
provisions were also made for Cuba to
assist in the skills training of tourism
service providers and individuals
desirous of pursuing careers in tourism.
Both short-term 2 week courses and 5
year university courses will be offered.

Minister Lovell thanked Minister
Cruz for the contribution of the Cuban
Government, and said that his
Government was also looking forward to
extending whatever technical support
and assistance it could, to assist in the
development of yachting in Cuba.

A Memorandum of
Understanding outlining the terms of the
agreement between the two


governments will be signed at a later
date.

Members of the delegation that
accompanied the Minister on the 5 day
trip included Research and Planning
Officer Corthwright Marshall, Tourism
Product Development Officer Darlene
Lay, Senior Assistant to the Minister
Elinor Oliver and Communications
Officer to the Ministry Maria Blackman.


Incorporating indigenous
culture into tourism product
will help drive development
process says Tourism
Minister

In recognition of the potential
for growth in cultural tourism in Antigua
and Barbuda, talk during a recent trip to
Cuba by Minister of Tourism, Culture and
the Environment Harold Lovell,
included+- discussing ways to ensure
that Antiguan culture is integrated into
the island's tourism product.


According to a new study
conducted by the Travel Industry
Association of America (TIA) and
Smithsonian Magazine, there is a
growing interest by travellers to visit
places where they can experience
cultural, arts, historic and heritage
activities.

This is a market that we are
playing close attention to, said the
Tourism Minister who is seeking to
build cultural ties with the government
of Cuba.

While in Cuba, the Minister
took the opportunity to examine the
workings of highly lucrative tourism
sites with strong cultural offerings in
the Pinar Del Rio province, in addition
to viewing the popular Parisien cabaret
in Havana.

He also attended the 16
annual International Book fair in
Havana, where he joined the Cuban
Minister of Culture Abel Prieto
Jimenez, in honouring indigenous
Cuban poets and novelists for their
literary works.

"Our Ministry recognizes the
importance of our cultural artists and
their role in depicting through the
various art forms, the Antiguan and
Barbudan way of life. Furthermore, we
acknowledge that it is the local creation
of arts and crafts for sale both in and
outside of the country, that will help to
drive our economy and provide a better
quality of life for our residents", said
Lovell.

"We are therefore committed
to partnering with the Department of
Culture in maintaining the integrity of
our culture while at the same time
showcasing our cultural heritage to
residents and visitors alike".


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Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


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Antigua and Barbuda
and Montserrat firm
up arrangements for
Ferry Docking Facilty

Antigua and Barbuda and
Montserrat move a step closer to the
realization of joint ferry docking facilities.

The disclosure comes from
Ambassador Dr. Clarence Henry, after a
recent two-day working visit to
Montserrat along with Mr. Wesley
James, Engineer at the Public Works
Department.

Describing his visit as
successful, Ambassador Henry
explained that apart from meeting with
Hon. Dr. Lowell Lewis Chief Minister of
Montserrat, several Cabinet Ministers
and Governor Deborah Barnes Jones,
they held working sessions with
engineers and technicians to draft a
Financing Proposal and elements of the
design to advance the ferry docking
facility proposal to the European
Commission.

Last year, CARIFORUM
Ministers approved the proposal as a
priority project under the Caribbean
Regional Indicative Programme, (CRIP),
and advanced the request for European
Commission support. The Commission
has been sympathetic to the thrust of the
proposal, but has indicated June-July
2007 as the cut off point for consideration
of a draft Financing Proposal under the
9th regional programming. Accordingly,
the CARIFORUM Secretariat has
recently requested from my Office,
background information and the receipt
of an early draft of the Financing
Proposal. The understanding is that the
CARIFORUM Secretariat is hoping to
complete all necessary work on the draft
Financing Proposal by the end of March
2007 for submission to the Delegation in
Barbados.


"To this end, it was agreed that
as the National Authorizing Officer that I
should travel to Montserrat with Mr.
James to initiate and advance the work
in order to meet the short timeframe. We
have been provided with several studies
including economic analysis of
Montserrat, the transportation and
environment sectors and that country's
sustainable development strategy. I am
convinced that Montserrat has been over
studied and there is no need to conduct
another study, in order to execute the
joint ferry docking facility project. In fact,
should there be an attempt to suggest
the conduct of another study to legitimize
CARIFORUM's request, would only
further stifle the economic recovery
efforts of the present Montserrat
administration", Dr Henry said.

"Our experts have shown their
competence and by the end of next
week, the engineers and draftsman are
expected to complete draft technical
designs and costing for both facilities.

Moreover, it was agreed
between the parties that the project will
comprise rehabilitation of the Little Bay
ferry jetty on Montserrat and the
construction of a ferry facility west of the
Ministry of Health in St. John's where a
similar facility once stood. Additionally,
the government of Montserrat will inject
sums from its local development fund for
the local component of the project", said
Ambassador Henry.

It is also expected that Mr.
James from the Public Works
Department will continue to work with his
Montserrat colleagues to finalize the
draft designs and costs. Antigua is also
to send a diver to conduct under water
structural examination of the Little Bay
ferry jetty along with the site in St. Johns
with a report for insertion into the
engineering design report.

"Our visit continues the close
collaboration between the governments


and people of Montserrat and Antigua
and Barbuda and I am looking to
complete the draft designs and
Financing Proposal for submission to
the CARIFORUM Secretariat and in
turn the Delegation for approval",
Ambassador Henry said.



Financial Services
Regulatory Commission
Oversees BETonSPORTS
settlement with Creditors

On February 19 the Financial
Services Regulatory Commission
(FSRC) announced it was assisting
and supervising BoS (Antigua) Ltd
("BOS"), the operator of the
BetonSports family of remote gaming
products, in a process for the collection
of funds owed to BOS and the onward,
orderly payment of collected amounts
to BOS creditors and employees.

The process has been
implemented under the supervisory
authority given to the FSRC in order to
give extra reassurance to
organizations that funds returned will
be properly used in the settlement of
creditors in line with legal
requirements, as well as assuring that
BOS creditors will be paid in a fair and
balanced manner.

Presently, BOS has been
unable to repay customers due to
cash-flow constraints, along with legal
and operational interruptions. A
substantial amount of monies owed to
BOS by payment processors and
publishers have not been repaid and it
is anticipated that the oversight of the
process by the Commission will give
these organizations the transparency
and reassurance they are seeking in
order to return funds, so they may be
distributed appropriately.


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP 11


Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


www.antigua-barbuda.com











The Commission under an
order received by the Eastern Caribbean
High Court of Justice will manage and
supervise all funds remitted. The
Commission and BOS Directors will be
communicating with all account debtors
directly. After evaluating, and verifying
the obligations to creditors of BOS, these
funds will then be paid in the legally
prescribed order by Commission.

Kaye McDonald, Director of the
Financial Services Regulatory
Commission, Division of Gaming noted
"We are pleased with the agreement of
BOS's Directors to cooperate with
Antiguan and Barbudan authorities to
ensure the proper discharge of creditors,
namely players and employees in this
difficult case. As regulators, it is our
responsibility to ensure that licensees
operate properly at all times even under
adverse conditions. We expect that our
involvement and the cooperation of BOS
will encourage the prompt payment of
amounts owed to BOS by payment
processors and others, so that funds can
be promptly returned knowing that they
will be distributed properly." Ms
McDonald added "we expect BOS
debtors to cooperate with the process,
and I am sure BOS is prepared to use all
legal remedies available, to ensure that
they do so."

Director of BOS, Mr. Clive
Archer, said "we are pleased to be
working with the FSRC to ensure that
customers, staff and other creditors
receive the money they are owed. We
have been hampered by the slow return
of funds owed to us and we hope that this
process will give debtors the
reassurance they need to swiftly pay, so
that our creditors including our
customers and staff can be paid. It is
extremely sad that such a great business
has been destroyed in this fashion but
we are committed to ensuring to the best
of our ability that it ends properly.

We are happy to cooperate with


the supportive staff of the FSRC and
believe that they are best suited, as the
regulatory authority to ensure that all are
treated fairly. We know that the business
is all about customers and staff and we
want to ensure they are properly looked
after."

Police to get state-of-the-
art mobile command
unit ahead of Cricket
World Cup

On February 26, Prime Minister
the Honourable W. Baldwin Spencer
announced that his government is set to
acquire a 22 x 12 x 10 ft mobile police
command unit ahead of Cricket World
Cup, after a delegation led by Minister of
Justice the Honourable Colin Derrick and
including UN Ambassador Dr. John W.
Ashe and Assistant Commissioner of
Police Wilhiem Samuels, concluded a
purchase agreement with OBS, Inc of
Canton, Ohio, a major supplier of police
command units in the United States

"I am pleased to announce that
our police force will be given a brand new
mobile command unit that will enhance
significantly their ability to project a
presence and thereby serve as a strong
deterrent to those who are bent on
disturbing public order, while at the same
time improving security at major events,
beginning with next month's Cricket
World Cup and beyond," he said.

Minister of Justice the
Honourable Colin Derrick stressed the
timeliness of this latest acquisition when
he noted that "With Cricket World Cup
less than a month away, this purpose-
built mobile police command vehicle will
be used as a command centre during
major incidents, and will serve as a
mobile command post to coordinate
intelligence and communications
between police commanders and front-
line police."


Senator the Honourable
Colin Derrick,
Minister of Justice and
Public Safety

Assistant Commissioner of
Police Samuels, who is in charge of the
St John's area also expressed his
satisfaction with this latest acquisition,
which he said was sorely needed.

"A suitable specialist mobile
command post is one of top priorities of
our police force. This unit, which is a
mini police station on wheels, will allow
those in command to have ready
access to units in the field, so that in
cases where appropriate back-up may
be needed it can be requested and
coordinated," he said.

The mobile command unit,
which will be able to accommodate a
state-of-the-art communications
systems, have secure wireless Internet
connections and also include display
screens and a video camera that can
record crimes as they are happening,
will be used to crack down on crime
around the country.


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Tel: 020 7258 0070 Fax: 020 7258 7486


www.antigua-barbuda.com




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