Prime Minister Freundel Stuart is pictured in conversation with former US Ambassador to Barbados, Mary M. Ourisma, following his address. (C. Pitt/BGIS)??

Despite its small size, Barbados is proud of its contribution to the world in several spheres of activity. Prime Minister Freundel Stuart affirmed this today in Washington, DC, while addressing the Centre for Strategic and International Studies of the US Chamber of Commerce (Caribbean Central American Action).

He pointed out that for many years Barbados was designated one of the leading developing countries according to the United Nations Human Development Report. "We have led the world on small states issues, and in 1994 hosted the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States, from which emerged the Barbados Plan of Action. Thereafter, we were instrumental in keeping small states firmly on the Commonwealth and World Bank Group agenda."

Mr. Stuart said that out of this work came the World Bank-hosted Small States Forum in the year 2000. He explained that "in addition, Barbados has played a leadership role in creating a platform for small, vulnerable economies in international fora such as the World Trade Organization and the World Intellectual Property Organization.

"Over the years, Barbadians have journeyed from our shores to make a contribution to several countries and institutions abroad, and we thank them for their service; they have made us very proud. Indeed, we have a vibrant diaspora, and I laud the tremendous contribution they are making to your society here," he said.

"I wish to say that we proudly count the Attorney-General of the USA, and several others like him, as part of our diaspora, as they descend from Barbadian parents.?? In the case of the Attorney General, his father was born in Barbados," the Prime Minister noted.

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