MINISTER OF Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Senator A.J. Nicholson has said Jamaica remains firm in its commitment to the aims and objectives of the Commonwealth.
Nicholson said the Government recognises the remarkable contribution of the inter-governmental organisation to Jamaica and others in the world, and is unwavering in its support for the aspirations it has for all its peoples.
"We will continue to work along with our fellow Commonwealth brothers and sisters to take the necessary actions to strengthen the important collaboration that exists among Commonwealth member states," he stated.
Senator Nicholson was addressing high school students during the Commonwealth Day Youth Symposium and Celebration, held at Jamaica Conference Centre, downtown Kingston, on Monday.
The event was held in recognition of Commonwealth Day 2013 under the theme: 'Opportunities through Enterprise, Unlocking Potential with Innovation and Excellence'.
Benefits of Commonwealth
The minister further told the youth that since Jamaica became a member of the Commonwealth in 1962, the country has benefited in a number of areas.
These include the strengthening of its debt recording and management capabilities, through the provision of training to public officials; assistance in enhancing the competitiveness of Jamaica's micro, small and medium-sized enterprises; assistance in promoting agri-business and food safety and security; as well as providing capacity building in crime-prevention methods.
The Commonwealth is a voluntary association of 54 independent countries, working together towards shared goals in democracy and development. These include the promotion of democracy, human rights, good governance, the rule of law, free trade and multilateralism. Member countries come from six regions: Africa, Asia, the Americas, the Caribbean, Europe and the South Pacific.
Commonwealth Day, celebrated on the second Monday in March each year, is used as a time to promote understanding on global issues and international cooperation.