Visa Waiver Agreement With China & Officials Sign Military Aid Protocol


   December 20, 2016  –   Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Foreign Trade, Bridgetown, Barbados.

      Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean shaking hands with Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to Barbados, Wang Ke, following the signing of a protocol for the Provision of Military Aid Gratis to Barbados on Monday. (A.Miller/BGIS)

          Cabinet recently approved a reciprocal Visa Waiver Agreement between the Governments of Barbados and the People’s Republic of China to include holders of ordinary passports.                              

    This announcement was made by Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean, during a ceremony to sign the protocol for the Provision of Military Aid Gratis to Barbados, on Monday.

She added that there was also an agreement “on the establishment of Visa-Free Access to holders of passports issued by the office of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the People’s Republic of China”.

Senator McClean also spoke of the excellent relations between the two countries, noting that 2017 would mark 40 years of diplomatic relations.

“In 2017 we will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Barbados and the People’s Republic of China and of continuous support by Barbados of the One-China Policy.  One distinct characteristic of the relations between Barbados and the People’s Republic of China, especially within recent years, is that they have remained engaging and productive,” she stated.

She noted two examples of such activities as the recent arrival of a Chinese medical team in Barbados to assist with the provision of medical care at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and the Sixth Round of Consultations between the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of some Caribbean countries and China’s Foreign Ministry, which took place in March.

“We also witnessed the successful completion and signing of the Treaty on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters and the Treaty on Extradition between our two countries….  This year also marked the beginning of the rehabilitation work on the Garfield Sobers Gymnasium, which has been facilitated by grant funding provided by China….  We have also benefited from cooperation in the area of education, with scholarships, training seminars and tangible donations to assist in several Government initiatives, such as climate change mitigation,” the Minister added.

Senator McClean also pointed out that the two countries had made advancements in the area of social-cultural cooperation, including The Fish and Dragon Festival and the establishment of the Confucius Institute at the Cave Hill Campus, University of the West Indies.


kim.ramsay-moore@barbados.gov.bb

           

           Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean, and Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to Barbados, Wang Ke, on Monday, signed a protocol between the Barbados Defence Force and the People’s Liberation Army of China.

During the signing, which took place in the Ministry’s conference room, Senator McClean explained that the initialisation of the document followed the signing of an agreement between the Barbados Defence Force and China on March 15. Under this agreement, China will provide Barbados with military aid gratis, valued at almost six million Barbados dollars.

“The protocol signed today serves to detail the specific equipment which the People’s Liberation Army has agreed to provide to the Barbados Defence Force. It should be noted that although the Chinese Government has donated military equipment to Barbados on previous occasions – military equipment which has been a tremendous benefit to the Barbados Defence Force in the execution of its duties; this is the largest such donation to date,” Senator McClean said.

The Minister also stressed that the agreement would continue the strong tradition of nation building, a major tenet of which is the security of Barbados and its people.  “The aid is therefore of paramount importance, not only as an opportunity to assist our military, but to secure our gains over the past 50 years,” she added.

Ambassador Wang Ke expressed her delight at the agreement between the two countries. She explained that the equipment to be purchased included a patrol boat.


“I believe that the protocol is a demonstration of the friendship between the People’s Republic of China and Barbados and will play a pivotal role in capacity building, especially for the Coast Guard and in disaster mitigation,” she noted.


Adding that in 2017 both countries would celebrate the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, the Ambassador opined that the protocol, along with other recent collaborations, had “kicked off” activities to mark the celebrations. “More is expected and we will organise a series of joint celebrations in the first half of 2017,” she said.


kim.ramsay-moore@barbados.gov.bb

Officials Sign Military Aid Protocol

          Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean, and Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to Barbados, Wang Ke, signing the protocol between the Barbados Defence Force and the People’s Liberation Army of China on Monday.(A.Miller/BGIS)