Resident British Commissioner Lindsy Thompson says she is proud of the Commonwealth membership and she remained committed to doing whatever is possible to ensure that this formidable fellowship of friendly nations delivers real benefits to the 2.5 billion people living in its 56 member states.
Today March 13 is Commonwealth Day.
“The foundation of our friendship might be based on a complex history, but it is also based on a shared understanding – that we can help one another; that we can meaningfully improve the lives of people around the world, that sovereignty, democracy, and freedom should and must be defended no matter the price,” Thompson said.
The High Commissioner said the Commonwealth boasts of the world’s largest and most prosperous economies as well as some of the smallest and most aspirational.
“Our diversity of scale poses an excellent opportunity to address lingering economic imbalances; protect our planet and enhance our chances for a sustainable future.
In an increasingly geopolitical world, where sovereignty is being challenged, the Commonwealth is a vital network of prospering free nations,” she said
While there is a lot the Commonwealth, or any other multilateral organization, can do to make a real difference, Thompson said “we believe we are at our most effective when we focus our efforts on a few essential aims”
She said the Commonwealth has the potential to deliver more on democracy, good governance, and the rule of law.
“We should use the chorus of our combined voices to advocate for urgent action on climate change and the protection of biodiversity and the natural environment. Commonwealth leaders highlighted this urgent need for action on climate change when they met in Kigali in 2022. Let us take it forward,” according to Thompson.
She said the commonwealth will continue to advocate in multilateral forums and the International Financial Institutions for enhanced access to finance and support.
“Lastly, we must boost trade and investment between Commonwealth countries. The UK believes that the Commonwealth can play a larger role by supporting developing members in attracting more investment during this economically turbulent time,” Thompson added.