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Feb 15

St. Kitts and Nevis and Sierra Leone commit to free movement of citizens

HE. Kevin Isaac (L) and H.E. Edward M. Turray

London (England) 14 February, 2017 – High Commissioner of St. Kitts and Nevis to the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, His Excellency Dr. Kevin M. Isaac and his colleague, High Commissioner of the Republic of Sierra Leone to the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, His Excellency Edward M Turay, today signed a mutual visa waiver agreement which will grant visa free access to their citizens to each other’s country for up to 90 days.

The Agreement conforms with the Unity Government’s strategy and ongoing commitment and efforts to deepen relations and foster relationships and engagements with countries across Africa. In the last eighteen months, Government has been studying how best to exploit the obvious synergies that come from bilateral and multilateral engagements with African countries as well as to exchange best practices.

Sierra Leone is a member of ECOWAS (the Economic Community of West African States) which consists of fifteen member countries, including such countries as Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal, which are in the Western African region. These countries have both cultural and geopolitical ties and shared common economic interest.

The Sierra Leone High Commissioner expressed satisfaction that both countries have embarked on this new path in their cooperation which has long benefitted from engagement in the context of the Commonwealth. His Excellency Turay welcomed the opportunities embedded in free mobility of citizens and underlined his desire to enhance people to people contact between both countries and regions through tourism and business.

For his part, Dr. Isaac underlined the importance of convergence between St. Kitts and Nevis and countries in Africa and championed the visa free access as a bridge across the Atlantic. High Commissioner Isaac emphasized that the historical links between both the Caribbean and Africa should facilitate deepened relations – a position and project that holds resonance with Foreign Minister, Hon. Mark Brantley’s vision of an expanded diplomatic footprint.

Both envoys offered greetings on behalf of their respective governments and extended invitations at the Ministerial level to take forward the renewed partnership.

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