Premier and Minister for Finance, Dr. the Hon. D. Orlando Smith announced that the Overseas Territories will be broaching the BREXIT situation with the mother country soon.
During a press conference on 12 October Premier Smith told reporters: “In my capacity as President of the United Kingdom Overseas Territories Association (UKOTA) Political Council, I will chair a meeting of OT Leaders to coordinate our positions on Brexit and other issues as we prepare for ministerial discussions with the United Kingdom Government at the Joint Ministerial Council (JMC).
Hon. Smith said that his goal for the meeting is to see the BVI and other Overseas Territories move toward deepening their cooperation going forward on issues that affect their respective territories. The Premier said that the goal is to amplify Overseas Territories’ collective voice in the international arena to better defend their interests in an increasingly uncertain world.
“Britain’s impending exit from the EU is a highly important issue for the BVI as our international affairs are anchored in part by the UK’s EU membership which gives us policy access in Brussels. I and other OT Leaders will collectively call on the UK to fully involve the OTs in Brexit negotiations under an established framework for discussions between the territories and the UK,” Premier Smith said.
He added: “We want to ensure that the negotiations do not adversely affect our near-term position with the EU with respect to ongoing EU support for programming scheduled to expire in 2020.”
The UK Overseas Territories Joint Ministerial Council meeting will be held in London from 31 October to 3 November 2016.