Deputy Premier Concludes Round Of UK Talks

June 15, 2018 | 1 Comment

Deputy Premier Walter Roban represented Bermuda in London for the Joint Ministerial Council European Negotiations [JMC EN] and the Pre-JMC ahead of the annual November meetings in London.

A Government spokesperson said, “The Deputy Premier and Minister of Transport and Regulatory Affairs, The Hon. Walter H. Roban JP MP represented Bermuda in London at Lancaster House for the Joint Ministerial Council European Negotiations [JMC EN] and the Pre-JMC ahead of the annual November meetings in London.

“The Joint Ministerial Council, European Negotiations, as committed by the UK Government and Governments of the Overseas Territories, is the primary political forum for dialogue on the UK’s exit from the European Union.

“The agreement for discussion reflects the associate status accorded to the UK Overseas Territories under Part IV of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union [TFEU], which Territories acquired by virtue of the UK’s EU membership. A separate forum is established for Gibraltar given its unique relationship with the EU.

Photo tweeted by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon showing him with Minister Roban

Lord AhmadofWimbledon Bermuda June 15 2018

“The forum is chaired by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, Minister for the Overseas Territories, Foreign & Commonwealth Office and other relevant Ministers across Whitehall Departments. The main three areas of discussion/interest are as follows:

1. Citizens’ Rights, Border Arrangements and Regional Cooperation

“Where it is relevant to Bermuda, the Minister welcomed comments made by a senior official at the Home Office with a guarantee that access of British Overseas Territory Citizens to the Schengen Area for the 90 day period is expected to be unchanged as a result of the UK’s departure from the European Union.

“However, if at the end of the negotiation period it is clear that British Citizens have ‘more rights’ in the EU than British Overseas Territory Citizens then under the British Overseas Territories Act 2002 they are welcome to make application for British Citizenship.

“The key component is the status remains, post the UK’s departure from the EU. The Government will continue to monitor these discussions and will update the public on developments.

2. Disaster Management

“The Prime Minister has undertaken to provide a rapid response to restore law and order following any major disaster within any of the Overseas Territories. There is acknowledgement by Her Majesty’s Government that the response to the aftermath of Hurricane Irma was not as rapid as were required for the needs for humanitarian assistance.

“The UK Government through Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Disaster Management Team have all responsibility for the Overseas Territories to provide immediate support and assistance based upon the needs of the Territories. Based on the nature of the disaster, the UK Government’s COBRA operation chaired by the Prime Minister will provide the necessary orders for immediate assistance.

“The Minister advised the forum that Bermuda will continue to provide support to those affected Territories in the upcoming hurricane season. The support will include recovery efforts, security and training under Bermuda’s membership of the Caribbean Electric Utility Services Corporation [CARILEC].

“Together, we reflected through prayer and hope that the impact of Hurricane Irma should never again be experienced on earth.

3. Constitutional Relationship

“As a result of the passing for an Order in Council under the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act, together we stand with Governments of the Overseas Territories and the UK Government that we will take all necessary measures to ensure that the UK Parliament does not interfere in the domestic affairs of an Overseas Territory. Discussions on upholding democracy were strong. It is clear the domestic affairs and legislative process are the responsibility of the local elected officials.

“Moving forward there will be a collaborative approach and the existing Exchange of Notes with the National Crime Agency and the Bermuda Monetary Authority to provide Beneficial Ownership Information within a 24 hour period will remain in effect.

“Together with the recent developments of UK Parliament’s interference and the UK’s departure from the European Union, The Prime Minister has recognized the need for all Overseas Territories to begin discussions on constitutional review and advancement.

The Prime Minister has appointed Minister for the Cabinet Office and the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, the Rt Hon David Lidington CBE, MP to oversee constitutional discussion or review with any Overseas Territory who desires change.

“The Minister raised the issue of a succession plan of qualified Bermudians to senior appointments under the responsibility of the Governor. This is relevant where the UK Government requires all Overseas Territories to be self-governing and self-sustainable as stated under the 2012 White Paper.”

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  1. puzzled says:

    Damn.
    Can’t see the green bracelet on his left hand.

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