Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Maxine??McClean greeting outgoing Australian High Commissioner??to Barbados, Philip Kentwell at her office at Culloden Road. (C. Pitt/BGIS)

Outgoing Australian High Commissioner to Barbados, Philip Kentwell, who is set to demit office at the beginning of January 2013, is pleased with bilateral relations formed here and in the region.

He signalled this during a recent courtesy call on Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean at her Culloden Road office.

He described the Barbados-Australia relationship as a rich one, adding that the support from others in the region also engendered a platform and basis for pursuing dialogue on areas of mutual interest.

Mr. Kentwell is High Commissioner for 13 other CARICOM territories including Trinidad and Tobago, where he is headquartered.??

While stating that there was still a lot of work to be done, he gave the assurance that Australia would continue to work "very closely with Barbados and the region" to move negotiations forward.

In response, Minister McClean commended the Ambassador noting that during her tenure there had been some "excellent programmes" undertaken by Australia.?? "I think there was a re-energising of our relationship which we appreciate very much and you would have been part of making sure that those things happened," she stressed.

Alluding to Australia’s ongoing support for Barbados via international lobbying, she said their continued sharing of initiatives and programmes with respect to the global problem of chronic non-communicable diseases would also be welcomed.?? As she appealed for further technical assistance from that country, Senator McClean acknowledged Australia’s role in the successful negotiations regarding Barbados’ continental shelf saying: "Our success would have in large measure been due to some of your support."

Barbados and Australia established diplomatic ties on January 7, 1974.


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