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- Published on Thursday, 02 February 2017 20:29
- Written by Super User
The vote by the British electorate to separate from the European Union and the widespread implications of this for the BVI will be the focus of the next lecture organised by the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College as part of its Community Lecture Series on Tuesday 21st February, 2017.
Dr. Peter Clegg, a Senior Lecturer in Politics at the University of the West of England, Bristol, United Kingdom will be the guest lecturer, leading a timely and relevant discussion on the impact of Brexit. Dr. Clegg has extensive expertise on the European Union (EU), Overseas Territories (OTs), the United Kingdom and Brexit. He has advised the UK Government as well as OTs on a range of matters. His main research interests are in international political economy of the Caribbean and contemporary developments within British OTs. He has published a paper on Brexit and the OTs entitled "Brexit and the Overseas Territories: Repercussions for the Periphery". This article together with a copy of the legislation that governs the relationship between the BVI and the EU called the Overseas Association Decision which came into force in 2014 are available for download from HLSCCs website.
The subject of the upcoming lecture is quite timely as Premier, Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith, OBE has just concluded talks in the UK with his counterparts from other Overseas Territories (OTs) at the first UK-OT Joint Ministerial Council on European Negotiations. The discussions focused on the implications of Brexit on OTs and their priorities in negotiations which were identified as freedom of movement, international trade and EU funding.
HLSCCs President, Dr. Janet Smith said, "Our community lecture series are intended to create greater awareness of topical issues and serve as a forum to stimulate dialogue. We take very seriously our role in informing and educating the community. The Brexit discussion in particular is quite relevant as it is new and evolving." Following Dr. Clegg's lecture, he will be joined by local experts for a panel discussion which will be followed by an audience question and answer session.
A structured framework has been established for on-going engagement between the BVI and fellow OTs with the UK on Brexit negotiations. The priorities for the BVI as set out by the Premier include the continuation of funding through the European Development Fund (EDF), UK support against EU blacklisting of BVI in financial services, tariff-free trade with the EU for BVI businesses and freedom of movement for BVI citizens in the EU, particularly in business and education.
The BVI currently has associate status with the EU and has benefitted extensively from the European Development Fund (EDF) for the construction of the Eileene L. Parsons Auditorium, the Culinary Arts Centre and the Learning Resource Centre at HLSCC. EDF funding was also used for the construction of the Sage Mountain and Coppermine Visitor Centres, the COSME Project for Small Business Development which serves the British and Dutch Territories in the Caribbean but is based in the BVI, the early warning system for extreme weather used by the Department of Disaster Management and a programme to strengthen the management and conservation of local beaches.
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