Governor of the US Virgin Islands John P. de Jongh, Jr. has paid a short visit to Saint Lucia.
Governor de Jongh is no stranger to Saint Lucia as he has visited the island on several occasions in the past.
Prime Minister, Dr. Kenny D. Anthony and Governor de Jongh discussed ways and means to strengthen the ties of friendship and co-operation between Saint Lucia and the US Virgin Islands. It is well known that many Saint Lucians live and work in St Croix.
The governor shared with the Saint Lucian leader the impact of the closure of the Hess Oil Refinery on the economy of St Croix.
Of particular concern to Governor de Jongh, was the displeasure of CARICOM over the protection extended to rum producers in the US Virgin Islands by the United States government. The governments of CARICOM have expressed their concerns to the US government but to date the matter remains unresolved.
Governor de Jongh explained to Prime Minister Anthony the importance of the rum industry to the economy of the US Virgin Islands. In turn, Dr. Anthony shared with the governor the range of factors, historical and otherwise, which he thought that CARICOM would have to consider in determining its approach to the issue.
Dr. Anthony reiterated Saint Lucia’s commitment to cordial relations which would redound to the benefit of citizens of both states. The prime minister spoke of the need to explore new areas of cooperation with the aim of providing new opportunities for education, training and employment.
Governor de Jongh returns to St. Thomas today, Friday.