Minister of the Environment and Drainage, Dr. Denis Lowe, is pictured during the courtesy call with Cuban Ambassador Lissette P??rez-P??rez. (G. Brewster/BGIS)

Cuba and Barbados intend to work together to create new opportunities for enhancing the environment.

This was among several issues discussed when Cuban Ambassador, Lissette P??rez-P??rez, paid a courtesy call on Minister of the Environment and Drainage, Dr. Denis Lowe at his office yesterday.

During that visit, Dr. Lowe outlined that a major thrust for Barbados at this time was its pursuit of the green economy, as it sought to protect its land, marine and ecosystems.

Dr. Lowe explained that the pursuit of a green economy meant Barbados had to continuously preserve its natural resources, especially alternative energy and biodiversity.

"The Ministry is looking at how we can broaden the activity in biodiversity given the fact that we have an urgent need to protect our ecosystems from the present threats of human activity and biodiversity which are marine-based, for example, the invasive species like the lion fish," the Environment Minister pointed out.

He stressed that Barbados needed to charter a course to respond to such eventualities, noting that the Ministry was interested in having broad discussions with Cuba to establish links along with the exchange of knowledge and skills to achieve the desired results.

Dr. Lowe further pointed out that the Green Economy Scoping Study revealed a number of areas for development as Barbados continued its pursuit of becoming a green economy.

He outlined plans for the Green Energy Complex which will see the convergence of waste into energy sources. "It could be a good opportunity for us to talk about sharing our practices and ideas and technology in that regard. We could also speak of wind and solar as it is a place where we could have a developmental mix with the two countries," he said.

The Minister gave the assurance that an existing Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) between Barbados and Cuba would be reviewed in an effort to chart a path going forward. Dr. Lowe also raised the possibility of an official visit to Cuba to observe some of its operations, especially in the area of bio-technology.

Mrs. P??rez-P??rez also made reference to the MOU signed in 2009 to develop an interchange area of science and technology between Barbados and Cuba.

She noted that it included items such as biodiversity and bio-technology. She suggested that the MOU be updated to include information that was more relevant to new developments.

The Ambassador also suggested that a team of experts from Cuba visit Barbados before an official visit was done to share their knowledge and experience in the area of bio-technology.

Barbados established diplomatic relations with the Republic of Cuba in December 1972.


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