Nevis Agricultural Minister – Alexis Jeffers
May 08, 2013
A four-member delegation from the St. Eustatius Government, paid a courtesy visit to Minister of Agriculture and Communication and Works in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) Mr. Alexis Jeffers during a one-day visit to the island on May 07, 2013.
The Nevis Minister, who welcomed the team to the island, told the Department of Information that the meeting offered both parties a chance to discuss and chart the way forward for continued collaboration between both islands.
“They have come to meet with us and speak with us regarding ways by which we can collaborate as sister islands. You know we have an ongoing trade with the folks in Statia and they have come to ensure they are able to continue those trades and also to find other ways by which we can develop future trade as well.
“It was indeed a good thing for them to have come to Nevis and we I am sure at some point would reciprocate this visit and visit them in Statia to see what they are doing there and what we can gain from what they are doing there to implement here in Nevis but it’s all about partnership. I am glad they have come and extended their hands and we have done the same thing,” he said.
Mr. Jeffers also registered his hope for a visit to St. Eustatius, an island which had strong family and agricultural ties.
The delegation’s leader and Commissioner of Agriculture on St. Eustatius Mr. Carlyle Tearr thanked Minister Jeffers for welcoming his team to Nevis and for having discussions with the team. He spoke of the good cooperation between both islands over the years and their plan to maintain the relationship was the reason behind the visit.
“As you know we have a good cooperation going on with Nevis and Statia and we thought it best to come here to renew our ties and basically enhance what we are actually doing in providing a better future for both islands in terms of cooperation in Agriculture and probably other areas as well.
“For me it’s a great honour to be here as well and to be a part of this delegation for someone who is basically new in that position and I look forward to seeing the Minister come to Statia and see what we can do there as well. [I wish you] much success in the future,” he said.
Supervisor of the Government owned Abattoir in St. Eustatius Mr. Clyde Van Putten used the opportunity to expound on the ties his island had already established with Nevis.
“We came here to Nevis to be able to officially meet him (Minister Jeffers) in his new capacity and then talk about the ongoing relationship between Nevis and St. Eustatius.
“The programme that Mr. Henson and the Minister referred to started over a year ago. At that point in time, I was the Commissioner responsible for Agriculture and that was one of the areas that we worked with and with a new government in office in Nevis, we thought it was necessary for us to come in and consolidate because every government comes, they come with new policies, new ideas and we wanted to ensure the continuity of this particular area and to seek other areas and means in which we could work together with Nevis,” he said.
Mr. Van Putten agreed that both islands had shared historic family ties with Nevis and registered his hope that under the new NIA both islands would be able to consolidate and re-strengthen the ties that already existed between them.
He said he felt privileged to visit Nevis again and looked forward to a visit by Minister Jeffers to St. Eustatius shortly so that they could further discuss ways and means in which both islands could collaborate and work with each other.
Director of Agriculture and Fisheries Mr. Roberto Hensen, acknowledged that his island and Nevis had been exchanging products and ideas and he looked forward to a long continuous cooperation.
Director of Economy and Infrastructure Mr. Simon Dijkshoorn also formed part of the delegation. He thanked Minister Jeffers for the warm reception to Nevis and described the one day visit as one with positive talks and an opportunity to enjoy the beauty of the island.
While on the island the delegation also met with Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture Mr. Eric Evelyn, Director of Agriculture Mr. Keithley Amory and also toured a number of agricultural projects on the island before their return to St. Eustatius later that day.