The staff of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Aviation (MOFA&A) were challenged to sharpen their skills in delivering top quality diplomacy with a recent information-filled lecture delivered by one of Saint Kitts and Nevis’s daughter of the soil.
Dr. Professor Jessica Byron, a native of Saint Kitts and Nevis, now serving as Director in the Institute of International Relations at the University of the West Indies’ (UWI) St. Augustine Campus in Trinidad and Tobago, delivered a lecture in early June entitled “Challenges of 21st Century International Relations: SIDS Outlook.” The virtual session was attended by the staff of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Aviation, including representatives and staff serving in MOFA’s overseas missions. It also attracted participation from persons in other Government ministries in Saint Kitts and Nevis.
Some of the areas on which Professor Byron deliberated were: Reflections on the evolution of diplomacy including its implications for small state actors, The changing shifts in power in a global economy, The current stresses weakening the global multilateral system, COVID-19 and its aftermath, SIDS specific takeaways from the current global climate and The Saint Kitts and Nevis diplomatic trajectory for the future.
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Aviation the Honourable Mark Brantley in giving brief remarks preceding the lecture saw the occasion as a reminder that our country needs to update its diplomatic toolkit and make it nimbler, to ensure that issues relevant to the development of Saint Kitts and Nevis are addressed in a way that is targeted and results oriented. “It calls for a more proactive and responsive approach,” said Minister Brantley, “and it means we must remain abreast of global, geopolitical issues and current events, to create the necessary environment using pragmatic foreign policy approaches and informed decision-making to facilitate our aims.”
A brief Question and Answer session was ably moderated by First Secretary in SKN’s Washington D.C. Mission Ms. Shanelle Simmonds. The Vote of Thanks was given by Senior Foreign Service Officer at MOFA Mr. Bjorn Hazel, who likened the exercise to a game of West Indies Cricket; thanking each of the different players for their effort in bringing the game together for a successful showing.