Matters of mutual interest with a view to further promoting cooperation between Antigua and Barbuda and the Dominican Republic were high on the agenda, when the Honourable Gaston Browne, Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda met with His Excellency Danilo Medina, President of the Dominican Republic, on the margins of the Fifth Summit of the Heads of State/Government of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), which took place last week in Punta Cana, the Dominican Republic.
Among the topics highlighted was the Government of Antigua and Barbuda’s desire for the Dominican Republic to establish its first embassy in Antigua and Barbuda, which would serve to further strengthen bilateral relations. In this connection, the Prime Minister indicated that his Government would offer a minimum of one (1) acre of land free of cost to the Dominican Republic for the construction of an embassy in Antigua and Barbuda.
In addition, Prime Minister Browne noted the tremendous potential of the relations between both countries, which is underpinned by strong people-to-people links, and joint coordination in fora such as CELAC and the Caribbean Forum (CARIFORUM). He stated that Antigua and Barbuda would welcome the further development of investment and business ties with the Dominican Republic, and pointed out that Antigua and Barbuda would serve as an excellent platform for trade reach into OECS and CARICOM markets.
Prime Minister Browne also mentioned the possibility of exploring bilateral cooperation in the realm of health-care, given that the Dominican Republic possesses expertise and high-level medical facilities that can be utilized by Antigua and Barbudan citizens seeking medical treatment abroad.
In response, President Medina affirmed the Dominican Republic’s keenness to bolster ties with Antigua and Barbuda, and agreed to establish diplomatic presence in Antigua and Barbuda. He informed that as a step to enhancing cooperation between the two countries, the Foreign Minister of the Dominican Republic, His Excellency Miguel Vargas, would visit Antigua and Barbuda to discuss bilateral possibilities in further detail.