Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Canada – Jamaica’s steadfast friend

Canadian High Commissioner to Jamaica H.E. Robert Ready

Excerpt from Jamaica Observer column by Jean Lowrie-Chin
As we listened to a presentation by Canadian High Commissioner Robert Ready at the recent Jamaica Lay Magistrate’s Golden Scale Awards, we realized the significant contribution that his country has been making to ours.  This has been a decades-old alliance – well do we remember the friendship between then Prime Ministers Michael Manley and Pierre Trudeau. 
Mr Ready pointed out that as former British colonies, we share the Westminster parliamentary model.  Last year, Jamaica welcomed over 400,000 Canadian visitors, the most from any country and with the launch of new routes out of Canada, we can be optimistic about continued support for our tourism product. Jamaica has also benefitted from the contribution of CIDA from as long as I can remember, and the Canadians have also been quietly funding large infrastructural projects over the years. They have been giving assistance with paediatric oncology, disaster resilience and response, and anti-corruption programmes.
We are particularly grateful for their commitment to Jamaica’s justice reform programme, the promotion of human rights and good governance.  We see the faith of this country in Jamaica through the continued operations here of three major Canadian banks – CIBC, Royal Bank and Scotiabank who together have provided employment and exceptional career opportunities for thousands of Jamaicans over scores of years. 
Jamaican farm worker in Canada - from www.rjrnewsonline.com

 Some 7,000 Jamaican farm workers receive seasonal employment each year in Canada, and thousands of Jamaican students have graduated from their excellent educational institutions, many of them returning home to serve, or becoming generous benefactors of their home country. 

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