New Zealand welcomes Barbados Minister for Maritime Affairs and the Blue Economy

Minister for Climate Change James Shaw has welcomed Barbados Minister of Maritime Affairs and the Blue Economy, Hon. Kirk Humphrey, to New Zealand for discussions with the Government on a range of bilateral and multilateral issues. Minister Humphrey will also be meeting Customs Minister Jenny Salesa and officials from the Ministry of Primary Industries. 

“I am pleased to accept Barbados’ request to join the New Zealand-led Ocean Acidification Working Group, on behalf of the Minister of Foreign Affairs. Ocean acidification is a serious and urgent global challenge, linked with climate change, that requires international cooperation,” James Shaw said.

“Despite the distance between our two countries, Barbados and New Zealand share strongly aligned interests in the areas of climate change, Small Island Developing States issues, multilateralism, and the rule of law.”

Ministers Shaw and Humphrey acknowledged the closeness of our views on many issues and agreed there was great potential for further growth in the relationship.

“Barbados is a leader in the Caribbean on issues affecting Small Islands Developing States. Many of the issues affecting the islands of the Caribbean are also priority issues for our Pacific neighbours,” said James Shaw.

Ministers shared their concerns on climate change, noting the need to take urgent action. New Zealand welcomed Barbados’s recent adoption of the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance commitments. Minister Humphrey confirmed to Minister Shaw that Barbados wanted to join the New Zealand-led Ocean Acidification Working Group and handed over a letter to this effect.

“We are pleased New Zealand is making efforts towards reducing carbon emissions, and is therefore a natural partner in our fight against climate change,” said Kirk Humphrey. 

Minister Humphrey is visiting New Zealand from 5-9 September 2019. While in New Zealand Minister Humphrey, the first Minister of the Blue Economy in the world, will also be seeing how New Zealand manages its maritime conservation areas and New Zealand’s approach to boat building and maintenance. He will then travel on to Samoa for the meeting of African, Caribbean, and Pacific Ministers of Fisheries and Aquaculture.