You are here
Major US city seeks to increase trade with the Caribbean
The mayor of a major United States city says he is seriously working towards increasing trade with the Caribbean. Hartford, Connecticut, Mayor Pedro E Segarra—whose city is considered to hold the nation’s third largest West Indian community, after New York and Miami—said last week Wednesday that he has been holding discussions, in this nexus, with key Caribbean officials. Segarra said he recently met with T&T’s ambassador Dr Neil Parsan: Anne Evans, district director of the US Department of Commerce International Trade Administration; and Andrew Lawrence from the Caribbean Trade Council (CTC).
The mayor said the discussions surrounded Connecticut’s Bradley Airport and “the necessary steps needed to make this facility a future hub for Air Jamaica.
“The mayor agreed to lead the effort, while working with appropriate partners, to develop a business case/economic impact study for why Air Jamaica should consider making Hartford a home of future operations,” according to a statement from the Office of the Mayor of Hartford. Segarra said he will establish a Caribbean Community (Caricom) office in Hartford and will serve as the “lead point-person in moving forward with plans for a trade mission, likely in June of 2012, to the Caribbean.” He said the building of a Caribbean products distribution centre in Hartford was also discussed. “When rare opportunities, like meeting with an ambassador and a representative of the federal government, avail themselves, it is critical to take advantage of them and capitalise on outcomes,” the mayor said.
“The residents of the City of Hartford have waited far too long for systematic change in government and tangible progress on job creation and economic development. Its meetings and discussions like those that occurred this weekend that will help Connecticut’s capital city move forward in ways that are consistent with the needs and demands of the many diverse communities and neighborhoods of Hartford,” he added.
Trade agenda with Caricom
Parsan said he was thrilled with Segarra’s initiatives. “It is indeed welcoming to sit with a mayor who is clearly passionate about Hartford, the people of Hartford, and welcomes the people of the Caribbean,” he said. “This sort of support to me as an ambassador is a breath of fresh air, and it brings me great hope for the development of sustainable, cordial relationships between cities and countries everywhere,” Parson added. “This meeting gave us an opportunity to move forward for the city of Hartford and our region a business and trade agenda with Caricom,” Evans said. “I am grateful to the mayor for his leadership in this endeavor. We should see measurable results in 2012,” she added.
Lawrence said the willingness of the parties to meet “demonstrates the commitment we have to enhance trade, tourism and economic cooperation between Hartford and the Caribbean Islands. “We at the CTC will continue to develop and strengthen diplomatic relationships and facilitate economic development efforts between the Caribbean islands and the City of Hartford, as well as the state of Connecticut,” he said. It was the second such meeting between the mayor and ambassador in the last several months. The previous meeting, in April, also included Hartford City Councilman and Majority Leader Ken Kennedy, representatives from Bradley Airport, the Connecticut Department of Transportation, the MetroHartford Alliance and District Export Council.
User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment writer and are not representative of Guardian Media Limited or its staff. Guardian Media Limited accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Please help us keep out site clean from inappropriate comments by using the flag option.
Guardian Media Limited reserves the right to remove, to edit or to censor any comments. Any content which is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will be removed.