As diplomatic relations continue to grow, the recent hint by the United States State Department of establishing US embassies in the Eastern Caribbean region has ignited optimism and excitement. In the ever-evolving landscape of international diplomacy, the United States and Dominica have emerged as steadfast allies in the Eastern Caribbean. A US embassy in Dominica is a welcome idea for Prime Minister Honourable Dr. Rosevelt Skerrit.
At the forefront of this groundbreaking development is Prime Minister Honourable Dr. Rosevelt Skerrit of Dominica. Subsequently, his unwavering support marks a pivotal moment in the alliance between these nations. From shared goals in economic growth and security to U.S. assistance empowering Dominica and the blossoming bilateral economic relations, it paints a picture of a dynamic landscape of international collaboration.
Possible embassy in Dominica
Prime Minister Honourable Dr. Rosevelt Skerrit of Dominica has wholeheartedly expressed his government’s steadfast support for this initiative, marking a pivotal moment in the diplomatic relations between the two nations.
During a recent press briefing, Honourable Dr. Skerrit unveiled the measures his government is taking to prepare Dominica for the potential embassy setup. He revealed extensive discussions between Dominica’s officials and representatives from the US embassy and the State Department.
Honourable Dr. Skerrit, while emphasising that the ultimate decision rests with the US government, conveyed his willingness to embrace this prospect with open arms.
“At the end of the day, it is a determination for the United States government to make. If they decide Dominica is one of them, we would certainly welcome this.”
A warm welcome
Additionally, Honourable Dr. Skerrit disclosed that, if selected, the US flag would proudly grace a building situated on property owned by the US government in Dominica.
“So, we are prepared to facilitate them to the fullest extent with the establishment of an embassy of the United States government in Dominica,” he declared. “We had discussions with them. And I have made an offer to them, and I will certainly welcome them.”
Honourable Dr. Skerrit took the opportunity to highlight the enduring and mutually beneficial relationship between Dominica and the United States. He put particular focus on the US’ contributions in critical areas like citizenship by investment (CBI), geothermal initiatives, and security.
Dominica views this potential strengthening of bonds as a testament to the fruitful collaboration that has thrived over the years.
Honourable Dr. Skerrit reassured that whatever the outcome, it would not hinder or strain Dominica’s relationship with the United States. Further,
His approach reflects a commitment to diplomacy and cooperation, echoing the sentiment that the future is built on strong alliances.
As the Eastern Caribbean anticipates the final decision, the prospect of US embassies in the region represents not just a diplomatic milestone but also an exciting opportunity for closer ties, economic growth, and enhanced security cooperation.
It’s a chapter of cooperation that promises to bring prosperity to all parties involved.
Dominica’s Resilient Relationship with the United States
Since gaining independence from the United Kingdom in 1978, Dominica has cultivated a cooperative and enduring partnership with the United States.
This alliance is distinguished by shared objectives in economic growth, public health, disaster resilience, and regional security collaboration. Especially as both countries are actively collaborating to enhance regional security. Their commitment is reinforced through agreements on maritime law enforcement, mutual legal assistance, and extradition, reinforcing their joint efforts to combat international crime.
Us assistance to Dominica is primarily channeled through influential organisations like the World Bank and the Caribbean Development Bank. The Peace Corps plays a pivotal role by offering technical support, predominantly in education. Peace Corps volunteers returned to Dominica in 2022, overcoming a two-year COVID-19-induced hiatus.
Dominica, as one of the thirteen Caribbean partners under the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI), reaps the benefits of U.S. support in counternarcotics efforts, law enforcement, and youth crime prevention.
Additionally, both nations are aligned through the U.S.-Caribbean Partnership to Address the Climate Crisis (PACC 2030). Essentially, they collaborate to combat climate change, strengthen energy security, and fortify critical infrastructure and local economies against climate-related challenges.
Dominica’s Economic Boost
Dominica enjoys the advantages of the US Caribbean Basin Initiative, facilitating duty-free access to the United States for many of its goods. This initiative aims to stimulate economic development and diversify the economies of Caribbean Basin nations.
Trade between Dominica and the United States soared to $375.6 million, underscoring the significance of their economic ties.
Both Dominica and the United States are active members of numerous international organisations. These include the United Nations (UN), Organization of American States, International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, and World Trade Organization.
Their active participation in these forums underscores their commitment to global cooperation and shared values.
Exploring the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS)
The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) stands as a vital regional inter-governmental organisation. It is dedicated to fostering cooperation and integration among Eastern Caribbean countries.
Established on June 18, 1981, through the signing of the Treaty of Basseterre, this organisation emphasizes unity, cooperation, and solidarity. In 2010, the original treaty was replaced by the Revised Treaty of Basseterre, paving the way for an economic union among the seven OECS countries.
Under this revised treaty, trade barriers were eliminated. As a result, there is a single financial and economic space, where goods, people, and capital move freely. It also ushered in the harmonization of monetary and governmental policies.
The OECS comprises 11 member countries in the Eastern Caribbean, including Dominica. The aim is to streamline travel and residency within its member states for citizens. This is done through various forms of identification, such as national identification cards.
The OECS’s vision for 2020-2024 is “A better quality of life for the people of the OECS,” and its mission is “To drive and support sustainable development through regional integration, collective action, and development cooperation.”
Today, the OECS has expanded to include 11 member countries. In addition, the British Virgin Islands, Anguilla, Martinique, and Guadeloupe are associate members.
These members collaborate closely on various fronts. These include trade, healthcare, education, environmental concerns, and the development of key sectors like agriculture, tourism, and energy. Notably, this organisation has played a pivotal role in fostering regional unity and progress in the Eastern Caribbean.