PRESS RELEASE: The BVI has lauded the United Nations (UN) for support provided by various UN agencies over the last 12 months and appealed for additional technical assistance to support the territory’s recovery.
On September 25 in the margins of the annual UN General Assembly, Mr Benito Wheatley attended a meeting at UN Headquarters in New York as a Special Envoy of the BVI Government, which was held under the theme ‘Private/Public Sector Partnership for Climate Resilience.’
He held initial discussions with Senior Strategic Advisor at the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Mr Luca Renda, in which he stressed the critical importance of the technical assistance currently provided by UNDP in the territory’s ongoing recovery planning work and the preparation of various recovery projects.
“UNDP experts currently on assignment in the BVI are providing essential recovery support to the Government which should be sustained and expanded,” Wheatley told Mr Renda.
Wheatley also delivered remarks to an audience of stakeholders that included the Clinton and Mercy Foundations. He highlighted the economic impact of the 2017 hurricanes on the territory whose losses were more than 300 percent of GDP or more than $3 billion.
He praised the UN for its support and encouraged the participants in attendance to include the BVI in any international programmes or projects being planned for the Caribbean region that can assist the territory in its recovery.
“The UN has been a great partner. However, our islands and communities are still vulnerable and UN and non-UN programmes and projects that can further assist us with recovery would be welcome.”
Wheatley also thanked all of the BVI’s partners for their support of the territory over the last 12 months. Speaking on the meeting he said: “The UN and a number of private sector businesses and Civil Society organisations have been instrumental in moving the BVI’s recovery forward and the Government wishes to continue working with them to accelerate the process.”
The BVI has received technical assistance from several UN agencies since Hurricanes Irma and Maria struck the BVI in September 2017. These include UNDP, United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and Pan- American Health Organisation (PAHO).
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