Havana to Host Ministerial Meeting of Caribbean Countries

Havana - Experts from the member countries of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS) are examining today at the technical level the topics that will be discussed this Friday at the 12th ordinary meeting of the Council of Ministers of that regional mechanism.

The 25 member nations of the ACS will be represented by their foreign ministers or top officials in tomorrow's meeting, in which Cuba will hand over the pro tempore presidency of the Council of Ministers.

Representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment of Cuba and the Special Development Zone of Mariel (ZEDM) will hold a joint press conference today.

The ZEDM is a project aimed at promoting the sustainable economic development of the nation by attracting foreign investment, technological innovation and industrial concentration, which at the same time guarantees the protection of the environment.

Since yesterday, this capital has hosted several meetings of the Association, which began with the First Cooperation Conference, which examined seven projects related to the climate change and maritime and air interconnection of the region.

The appointment was described as transcendental by the Secretary General of the ACS, June Soomer, who thanked Cuba for the organization of the forum.

According to Ileana Núñez, Cuban Vice Minister of Foreign Trade (MINCEX), three of the projects presented respond to the common interest of strengthening capacities to mitigate the effects of extreme climatic variations, while the other four propose to link the Caribbean area by air and sea.

'For the nations of the area -he considered- the improvement of the infrastructure and the technical conditions with a view to promoting solutions in those two subjects of great relevance is an essential priority.'

Countries cooperating with the ACS, agencies and international organizations attended the meeting, which sought to promote technical, material and financial collaboration.

'For the first time -Núñez said- the group makes an appointment of this nature and we hope it will become a tradition for its importance to coordinate efforts through direct contact with other institutions inside and outside the region.'

With the purpose of reviewing the progress of the integral relations between Cuba and the nations associated with the Caribbean Community, Havana will also host the 5th Ministerial Meeting between that bloc and the Largest of the Antilles next Saturday.

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