Belize hosted the fourth CARICOM-Mexico Summit this afternoon in Belize City. Mexican President, Enrique Peña Nieto, co-chaired the regional summit alongside Prime Minister Dean Barrow. This was Peña Nieto’s first visit to Belize. Before the opening of the Summit at two o’clock, PM Barrow and President Peña Nieto participated in a bilateral meeting where they evaluated the state of play of the bilateral relations. The Heads of State discussed topics such as education, sports, maritime security, as well as economic and political cooperation. One of the key focus of the summit is climate change, as explained by PM Barrow.
Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister
“Of course, all the world knows that recent weeks have visited horrific natural disasters from both Mexico and CARICOM. In Mexico people and government pulled together in that special blend of nationalism and resourcefulness that is so peculiarly and world famously Mexican an in CARICOM, native resilience has already expressed itself in ingenious, creative concrete plans for cooperation with international partners that will not only fund reconstruction but begin a new march to climate resilience and a green Caribbean. Your presence today is a testament to the importance you give to cooperation within the mark of the summit, the importance of the joint effort to protect and strengthen our societies against vulnerabilities and the importance of demonstrating to all the world that in all parts of North America and the Caribbean the will for survival, revival, and progress is inexhaustible. That is why in all the circumstances this summit is such a special one and for Belize, as host, it gives a special vitality and legitimacy to our dual heritage hence the special practical importance of this summit. It serves as a critical platform for cooperation, for the deepening of a progressive relationship based on our shared desire and need to jointly solve our people’s problems, for common ground solutions to lift them out of poverty and insecurity and defeat the impunity of the drug trade and for shared strategies to protect our physical, cultural and environmental heritage and move our society’s economic solidity and equal opportunity for all. Today, therefore, we have an opportunity to build upon the work of the three previous summits and on our mutual interest in the multiple areas of identical concern. We have an opportunity to build metaphorical if not literal bridges across the expanse of the Caribbean sea and we have an opportunity to lift one another up as we proceed to expand our cooperation, vitalize our complementarities and demonstrate the false logic of any who would see the international system, with all its flaws and imperfections as only a zero-sum game. Disaster management, health, education, security, energy, technology, trade and investment these are the hardscrabble issues, the plinth and building blocks that we must tackle in order to drive progress and unshackle our societies within and across our borders.”