Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister Hugo Swire has opened Britain’s first diplomatic mission in Port-au-Prince since 1966. The Embassy, co-located within the premises of the Canadian Embassy, is another step in the UK’s plan to expand its diplomatic network overseas.
Britain has had diplomatic relations with Haiti longer than any other country in the Caribbean, having recognised the country in 1833.
During his visit, Mr Swire met President Martelly and Foreign Minister Casimir, as well as hosting a Queen’s Birthday celebration with guests from the British community, the government of Haiti, businesses and Haitian civil society.
Speaking on his departure, Hugo Swire said:
It was an honour to open the new British Embassy in Port-au-Prince – our first permanent diplomatic presence in Haiti since 1966. It is a symbol of the UK Government’s desire to build its relationship with the government and people of Haiti.
It is only right that the UK should have a diplomatic presence in Haiti, given our range of interests here. Our new Embassy will allow us to build an even closer dialogue between our two governments and support the Government of Haiti in its efforts to promote sustainable development and open up to trade and investment.
I have spent a short but fascinating time in Haiti and the Dominican Republic and will take home fond memories. I look forward to working closely with both countries in the future.
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