New United Nations Development Programme Resident Representative, Stephen O’Malley, is committed to making his agency “as relevant as possible” to tackle the challenges faced by Barbados and other countries in the region.
He gave this undertaking during a courtesy call with Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean, at the ministry recently.
O’Malley said his principal objective during his five-year tenure was to ensure that the agency’s relevance was reflective of the agenda of governments around the region.
“I have read the … UN Development System Framework and I will work according to those priorities that have already been agreed to and other issues such as Small Island Developing States and the post 2015 Agenda, which promises to be a challenging one,” he added.
McClean described the two issues raised by O’Malley as critical and disclosed that Government had been working closely with the UNDP in preparation for the inter-regional meeting.
She said Barbados’ commitment to SIDS could not be underestimated “within the context of our realities”.
“It [SIDS] is an important issue and we are looking forward to doing our part as we prepare for 2014, but more importantly … when we look [at the post 2015 agenda], that is also important,” McClean added.
She disclosed that the island had been able to achieve a lot despite the challenges it was facing.
“Through the SIDS programmes, we hope that we can, not only share to the world that this is our reality, but also share our success through initiatives to facilitate technical cooperation and South-South cooperation,” she told the envoy.