Rowley holds bilateral talks with Norway's PM
Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley (top right) sits obliquely opposite Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg.
Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley met with the Prime Minister of Norway, Erna Solberg on Thursday for discussions on a number of issues of mutual interest.
The talks with Prime Minister Solberg covered several issues including climate change, the upcoming EU-ACP trade negotiations and the impact of the political and humanitarian situation in Venezuela on Trinidad and Tobago.
Earlier in the day, Dr Rowley along with Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley and Prime Minister of St Kitts and Nevis Dr Timothy Harris met with Prime Minister Solberg for talks which focused on the approach to the Venezuelan issue.
Parties to this discussion reiterated their commitment to continue supporting the search for a peaceful solution to the situation in the country.
In May, the Government of Norway facilitated talks between representatives of the main political actors in Venezuela who demonstrated a willingness to move forward in the search for an agreed-upon and constitutional solution to the political, economic and electoral issues.
Solberg spoke to the issue when she addressed the wider group of regional leaders at Thursday's plenary session of the 40th Regular Meeting of the CARICOM Heads of Government.
The Prime Minister of Norway said, “We have been engaged in conflict resolution on several continents and have acted as a facilitator in several peace processes, most recently in Colombia and Venezuela. In Venezuela, the Government and the opposition have asked us to facilitate a negotiated solution. There have been two rounds of constructive talks in Oslo.”
She further noted, “Although the process is still fragile, it is my impression that we have a window of opportunity. International and regional backing for the negotiation process is crucial for its success. We, therefore, ask CARICOM and its members to support the peace process in any way you can, including through your contact with the parties.”
During the plenary session, heads received the interim report from the CARICOM Commission on the Economy which is led by Economist Professor Avinash Persaud.
The main objective of the restructured commission is to provide advice on the implementation of solutions to build resilience and return CARICOM economies to a path of sustainable growth and development.
The Commission will address the structural challenges affecting growth prospects of CARICOM States and assist in the mobilisation of resources to unlock the growth potential of the Community taking into account: fiscal sustainability and building resilience; debt relief and restructuring; crucial economic infrastructure services, specifically energy and information communications technology towards the promotion of economic efficiency and the fintech and blockchain technology.
At the time of this release, Heads of Government were meeting in caucus in St Lucia.