BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, June 02, 2021 (Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister) – Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris today, Wednesday, June 02, accepted the credentials for the new United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Representative to St. Kitts and Nevis, Ms. Valerie Cliff.
Ms. Cliff was appointed as UNDP Resident Representative for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean on April 16, 2021. She previously served as UNDP Deputy Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific since 2017.
During Wednesday’s virtual meeting, Ms. Cliff thanked the honourable prime minister for the warm welcome and stated that during her tenure she will work to advance the work of the United Nations Development Programme in the Federation.
“Our cooperation has been very fruitful between UNDP and St. Kitts and Nevis, primarily in the areas of climate change and adaptation. We are working on supporting you and your Government with protected areas, preserving biodiversity and also with our GEF [Global Environmental Facility] Small Grants Programme working on areas of climate change adaptation primarily and then also in citizens’ security through our regional programme called CariSECURE,” Ms. Cliff said.
TheCariSECURE project seeks to ensure citizen security through capacity building, best practices and technology transfers for crime fighting. It is being coordinated by the UNDP, in partnership with the Regional Security Systems, the OECS Commission and CARICOM IMPACS.
PrimeMinister Harris, in turn, pledged his Government’s commitment to work more consistently with the United Nations Development Programme to address challenges of development in a post COVID-19 world.
Dr. Harris said, “The United Nations Development Programme is of course an important one and we are looking forward to expand the range of access which we have to that particular entity and to provide for a number of support systems in the critical areas such as the Global Environmental Facility, issues more broadly of climate change adaptation and mitigation measures and the citizen security project. These are all very important ones. They now assume greater importance in the context of the reality we have with COVID-19, which in fact in some ways may have exacerbated the threats and the challenges which we face as small island states.”
TheUNDP has recently partnered with St. Kitts and Nevis in securing funds from the Global Environmental Facility for the Conserving Biodiversity Project. This project seeks to address outstanding issues related to the Protected Terrestrial and Marine Areas and the legal, institutional, and financial frameworks enabling such protection.