Prime Minister Gaston Browne will leave the island today Tuesday to take part in a series of meetings, focused on actualizing the process made actualizing the progress made on the Multidimensional Vulnerability Index (MVI).
The gathering is taking place in New York and PM Browne together with former Prime Minister of Norway, Erna Solberg, are Co-Chairs of the United Nations High-Level Panel on the MVI.
The meeting according to a press statement from Maurice Merchant also seeks to introduce a “more accurate reflection of the needs of countries whose vulnerabilities increase their exposure to external shocks”
The meeting according to Merchant will also seek to change the way concessionary financing is measured for vulnerable states.
“The MVI seeks to change this by developing an inclusive approach that not only considers a country’s fiscal state but its ability to respond to major climatic events like a disastrous hurricane or global economic shocks,” the statement said.
Meanwhile. during his visit, Browne as Co-Chair of the HLP, will lead discussions at a two-day retreat at the United Nations Headquarters with economists, policymakers, and leaders of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) who have an abiding interest in bringing the MVI to reality.
He is also expected to hold bilateral discussions with UN Secretary- General, His Excellency António Guterres.
“He will be joined in those discussions by Antigua and Barbuda’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations His Excellency Walton Webson and Deputy Permanent Representative Mr. Tumasie Blair” according to Merchant, who also said in his statement that talks will also be held on the progress of work so far on the MVI and the Fourth SIDS Conference that will be held in Antigua and Barbuda in 2024.
The prime minister is also expected to discuss the challenges aspiring from the economic fallout that gripped the country and other Small Island Developing States as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bilateral discussions are also expected between PM Browne and Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, His Excellency Mr. Gilad Erdan and the Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom to the United Nations Her Excellency Dame Barbara Woodward.
In his absence, Attorney General and Minister for Legal Affairs, Steadroy Benjamin will be the acting prime minister.
Prime Minister Browne returns to the state on Friday.