The Premier Honourable Sharlene Cartwright-Robinson, Executive Director for the Office of the Premier, Local Government and Community Affairs, Ronlee James and UK Representatives for the Turks & Caicos Islands, Tracy Knight and Kimo Tynes on Tuesday, 6 October attended the annual Pre Joint Ministerial Conference which was held virtually for the first time.

The annual conference joins together associate members of the United Kingdom Overseas Territories Association (UKOTA) to discuss matters that promote the interests of the Territories and the co-operation between them and the collective and individual partnerships between the Territories and the UK Government.

The aim of the one-day meeting was to agree upon topics to be discussed and addressed at the Joint Ministerial Conference which, due to the coronavirus pandemic, will be held virtually later this year.

On the agenda at this meeting:

· Crisis and Security: COVID-19: Economic Impact, Vaccines, Disaster Management: support to deal with hurricanes etc. and Border Security

· Environmental Protection & Climate Change

· Protecting Vulnerable Groups in a Pandemic

· EU Exit & International Trade

· Recent press regarding Her Majesty’s Government sending asylum seekers to Overseas Territories for processing.

The Premier participated in the multilateral meeting and led discussions on border security during the meeting which outlined the Turks and Caicos Islands Government strategy, planned developments and partnerships for managing maritime safety and security in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

UKOTA is a representative group of 12 inhabited Overseas Territories (OT) including the Turks and Caicos Islands and presenting the collective view of the Overseas Territories through dialogue and contact with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and through other UK Government Departments; both at official and Ministerial level.

The annual Overseas Territories Joint Ministerial Council (JMC) brings together political leaders from the Overseas Territories and UK Ministers. It will meet this year from 26 - 27 November 2020.