BASSETERRE, St Kitts (SKNIS) — St Kitts and Nevis is preparing to host its inaugural Diaspora Conference spearheaded by the ministry of foreign affairs with representatives from key stakeholder agencies, including the Chamber of Industry and Commerce, ministry of tourism, the Nevis Tourism Authority, the St Kitts Investment Promotion Agency (SKIPA) and the Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU).
The June 26 – 28 conference will be held under the theme, “Building Partnership Towards Sustainable Development.”
The conference will be feature a host of speakers from the Diaspora as well as representatives from key ministries of government. Additionally, there will be a special session for economic citizens, a cocktail reception and a cultural extravaganza.
Permanent secretary in the ministry of foreign affairs, Kaye Bass, said that the Diaspora community is a valuable partner in advancing the national development agenda.
“A 2013 World Bank Study revealed that the number of persons who remains in their country of origin is equivalent to the number that migrates and that ninety percent are interested in investing in their home country. The home country can also discover means of empowering its nationals abroad so that the relationship can be to our mutual advantage,” she said.
She also noted that the Diaspora holds untapped potential for collaboration in areas of importance to the country and that the conference will offer a platform for “learning how we can bridge the communication gap between home country and its Diaspora that can yield benefits on both sides.”
The Diaspora Conference will target priority areas such as agriculture, the development of small and medium enterprises, energy, engineering, information and communication technologies (ICTs) and tourism.