UK Foreign Minister Visits BVI To Discuss Governance Reforms

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(PLTM) - GIS - Minister for the Americas, the Caribbean and UK Overseas Territories, David Rutley MP, arrives in Road Town today.

During his visit, the Minister will meet Premier Honourable Dr. Natalio Wheatley and the British Virgin Islands Government to receive an update on progress of governance reforms stemming from an independent inquiry into governance in the territory.

Ahead of his arrival the Minister said:

“The Overseas Territories are a core part of the UK family and the UK Government is committed to the security. prosperity and wellbeing of the people of the British Virgin Islands. We want to see a successful, thriving, well-governed BVI, and will continue to do our upmost to support the Governor and the people of the BVI to achieve that goal.

“The Commission of Inquiry has identified serious governance and reputational issues, but progress on implementing its recommendations has been too slow, with agreed deadlines missed. That is why I am here: to listen and understand from those working directly on the reforms how they can be delivered quicker so that the people of BVI get the good governance they deserve.

“The UK will provide further technical assistance if required. However, if there continues to be a lack of progress, we will not hesitate to take further action to help deliver the much-needed reforms.”

Of the Minister’s visit, Governor Daniel Pruce said:

“The Minister’s visit comes at a crucial time for the BVI, and signals the UK’s interest and commitment to ensuring that the BVI succeeds. Delivering the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry will help us achieve the positive changes we all want to see, including better access to services, a fairer society with opportunities for all, and a more accountable and transparent government.”

Findings from the independent Commission of Inquiry (COI) showed that the people of BVI have long lacked good governance and set out a list of recommendations to be implemented to address the historic failures around honesty, transparency and the rule of law.

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