THE MOST HON. P.J. PATTERSON, O.N., P.C., Q.C., MP.
PRIME MINISTER OF JAMAICA
ON THE OCCASION OF THE DINNER
THE HON. PRIME MINISTER OF ST. LUCIA
Sandals Grande St. Lucia Beach Resort & Spa
July 1, 2004
I must thank my host for the very impressive St. Lucian hospitality extended to the Jamaican delegation since our arrival. It is indeed an admirable and authentic demonstration of the “Caribbean experience” many have come to know and love.
This visit has once again reminded us that in a constantly changing global environment, collaboration is inescapable, regardless of its nature and scope.
We later convened as partners, engaging in discussions which will, among other things, undoubtedly accelerate CARICOM integration efforts and realization of the Caribbean Single Market and Economy.
I regret that my schedule will not permit a visit to the Grande Anse Beach, a popular location, particularly between mid-March and the end of July, for the benefit of other members of my delegation. This is where as all St. Lucians know well, visitors and locals go to witness a very uncommon occurrence:
Endangered leatherback female turtles leave their most secure and familiar surroundings, to come ashore and lay their eggs.
In this splendid St. Lucian attraction you will encounter an invaluable truth which is applicable to the survival of our region. Theturtles only advance when they stick their necks out.
Tomorrow, the businessmen will engage in intense discussions as we continue the quest to develop economic ties within our region.
“It was about advancing the objectives of the Caribbean community,”
“It was about being convinced of the importance of mutual reliance among developing states.”
But most importantly, I anticipate statements which will underscore the sentiment that it was about two determined nations of the Caribbean, coming together and investing in the attainment of common goals, even when it was clear that in order for them to advance, they have to stick their necks out.”
Honourable Prime Minister, specially invited guests … please join me by raising your glass to progress, brotherhood and solidarity.