St.JOHN’S, Antigua and Babruda – 27th February 2015…….The Government of Antigua and Barbuda has declined a request made on 24th February 2015, through the Secretariat of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), to grant visa-free entry to nationals of Taiwan.
In a letter to the Director-General of the OECS, Dr Didacus Jules, Prime Minister Gaston Browne has made it clear that Antigua and Barbuda is committed to a One-China policy and has enjoyed unbroken and beneficial relations with the Peoples Republic of China. Therefore, the government of Antigua and Barbuda “respectfully declines the request”.
The Director General of Communications in the Prime Minister’s office, Maurice Merchant, also made it clear that when Prime Minister Gaston Browne spoke at the Opening of the CARICOM Heads of Government meeting in the Bahamas on 26 February, he did so in his capacity as Outgoing Chairman of the organization. In that capacity, he had an obligation to reflect the views of all member-states. It was in that context, and on their behalf, that he conveyed thanks to the government of Taiwan.
Mr Merchant emphasized that the Prime Minister’s statement as outgoing Chairman of CARICOM does not dilute in any way the ongoing commitment of Antigua and Barbuda to a One China policy and its relations with the Peoples Republic of China.