St. Kitts and Nevis makes positive strides in international community
BASSETERRE, St. Kitts – St. Kitts and Nevis’ Minister of Foreign Affairs the Honourable Mark Brantley reports that St. Kitts and Nevis is making great strides in the international community as a nation that is exemplary in good governance and that its bilateral relations with other countries are mutually beneficial and growing.
The foreign minister made these comments at the second in a series of town hall meetings dubbed “People’s Forum” at the Joshua Obadiah Williams Primary School in Molineux Feb. 27. “The international community now recognizes that in Basseterre, they have a serious government, a government that they can trust, a reliable international partner, not a partner that will jeopardize their countries,” he said. “We have expanded the diplomatic footprint of St. Kitts and Nevis to the point where we have been able to fashion diplomatic relations now with another 22 countries, with more to come.”
These include countries such as Cyprus, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Croatia, the Republic of Kenya, the Republic of Maldives, the Republic of Belarus, the Republic of Mauritius, and Brunei Darussalam.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and diplomats based overseas have also been working assiduously to enhance the value of the St. Kitts and Nevis passport. Brantley explained that the success of this effort is evident in the increasing number of countries that grant visa waiver entry to nationals.
“We have added 13 new countries, including major countries such as Russia, Brazil, Indonesia and some African countries such as Kenya,” Brantley emphasized. He added that the growing list of countries granting visa-waiver entry to passport holders from St. Kitts and Nevis is reflective of the trust and confidence that foreign governments place in the local government.
Brantley addressed the concerns of some who do not appreciate the value of having the ability to travel to a country like Russia, which is almost 7,000 miles away from St. Kitts and Nevis. “You may not want to go, but your children may want to go,” he said. “The truth is that if you want to go you, should be able to go without letter or hindrance, and it is our job to ensure that if people of St. Kitts and Nevis [want to, they] … ought to be able to travel freely.”