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Panamanian investors eyeing links with SVG

Panamanian investors eyeing links with SVG


St. Vincent and the Grenadines is spreading its business wings.

The newest country showing interest is Panama.

Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves outlined prospects of new potential for trading last Wednesday morning. He was speaking after his return from the South American continent.{{more}}

Improvements in relationship between the two States will see the setting up of formal diplomatic ties.

This was underlined in a Joint Communiqué signed between Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves and His Excellency President Martin Torrijos Espino.

They agreed to the “reciprocal abolition of visas for holders of diplomatic and official passports.”

Dr. Gonsalves noted historical links between St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Panama.

The communiqué highlighted both leaders’ commitment to “deepening and strengthening the relationship which exists between both countries, and which is built on the historical links sprung between Panama and the Caribbean during the construction of the Panama Canal.”

According to Dr. Gonsalves, Panamanian investors showed interest in tourism and the shrimp industry in SVG.

However, cooperation would be enhanced in trade, promotion of exports, environment, natural resources, Agriculture, Agri-business, Health, Education, culture and sports.”

St. Vincent and the Grenadines is hoping to use their South American contacts to help solve the problem of exports of bananas to the European Union.

Six Vincentians are expected to take up training at the University of Panama from January next year. They would be doing so under Panamanian scholarships.

And if things go according to plans, the Panamanian President would be visiting St.Vincent and the Grenadines before 2007.

Dr. Gonsalves alluded to a $5 billion expansion of the Canal, which he termed as “critical.” A referendum is scheduled for October 22 to ratify that extension.

And by November this year, getting to Panama will be easier. That would come about through improved airline services through Trinidad and Tobago.

The Vincentian Prime Minister noted that Panama was “just across there,” and he queried why persons had to go through Miami to reach a country washed by the Caribbean Sea.

The leaders also agreed that, “in order to achieve international peace and security, sustainable development and social progress, there must be an effective multilateral system based on the respect for international law and in keeping with the principles of the United Nations Charter.”