UK ministers held the first meeting of a new forum dedicated to discussing the implications of Brexit for the Overseas Territories.
Minister for Exiting the European Union Robin Walker and Foreign Office Minister Baroness Anelay today hosted leaders and representatives from the Overseas Territories, to ensure their interests regarding the impact of Brexit are taken into account.
Territory leaders welcomed the new forum as a means of facilitating direct and regular engagement with UK Ministers in preparation for and during the UK’s negotiations with the European Union. Leaders discussed areas of high priority and opportunities for their territories.
Minister for Exiting the European Union Robin Walker said:
When the UK leaves the European Union the strong relationship we have with the Overseas Territories and the important mutual trade and business links we share will continue.
The UK Government is committed to engaging with our friends in the Overseas Territories as we prepare to exit the EU, and ensuring that we get a deal that works for everyone. In this context, we discussed how the Territories can contribute to a truly global Britain.
Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office The Rt. Hon. Baroness Anelay said:
The Overseas Territories are integral to the UK Government’s ambitions to create a more outward looking United Kingdom. We are committed to taking their priorities into account as we prepare for negotiations to exit the EU.
I have discussed this very issue during my visits to the Overseas Territories and am keen to build on this early positive engagement to ensure the deal the UK Government ultimately negotiates works for all.
The first Overseas Territories Joint Ministerial Council on European negotiations was attended by leaders and representatives from the following territories:
- British Virgin Islands
- Cayman Islands
- Falkland Islands
- Pitcairn Islands
- St Helena and Ascension Island
- Tristan da Cunha
- Turks and Caicos Islands
Last week the Government published its plan for a new, positive and constructive partnership in the mutual interest of the UK and the EU, with a White Paper presented to Parliament.
The paper mirrors the 12 objectives the UK Government will use to negotiate Brexit as set out by the Prime Minister last month.