Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : UK Minister David Rutley MP concludes 3-day visit to Belize [September 2023]

The press release issued by the Foreign Office on 8 September 2023.

The United Kingdom (UK)’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) Minister for the Americas & Caribbean visited Belize.

David Rutley MP, UK Minister for the Americas & Caribbean, completed his 3-day visit to Belize yesterday. Accompanied by Acting High Commissioner to Belize, Kate Reynolds, his engagements focused on bilateral relations, defence cooperation, climate change, gender, and infrastructure to support livelihoods and economic development.

His visit began with meetings with the Prime Minister of Belize, Honourable John Briceño, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Immigration, Honourable Eamon Courtenay.

Minister Rutley also met with government officials and members of civil society, including advocates for the rights of women and girls and Chevening alumni who work in climate-related fields. He engaged in meaningful discussions and reiterated the UK’s commitment to continuing to work together towards shared goals.

British Army Training Support Unit Belize (BATSUB) received Minister Rutley for a tour of their training area in the Gallon Jug area. He was able to see first-hand the benefits of the strong relationship between Belize and UK as soldiers participated in jungle training.

Minister Rutley also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) under the Small Island Developing States Capacity and Resilience (SIDAR) Programme. This announcement kick starts a partnership with the Caribbean region to increase access to climate finance.

One of the highlights of Minister Rutley’s trip was a visit to the Coastal Plain Highway, where he had the opportunity to see the recently upgraded road that was made possible through a grant from the UK. He met with representatives from the local communities to hear about how it has improved livelihoods. He also met with officials from the Ministry of Infrastructure, Development and Housing who were responsible for supervising the completion of the project in a timely and cost effective manner.

Minister Rutley’s visit concluded with a brief press conference at the Phillip Goldson International Airport. He had the opportunity to meet with representatives from local media, an excellent opportunity to foster open dialogue, exchange ideas, and deepen understanding between UK-Belize.

Minister for the Americas and the Caribbean, Minister David Rutley said:

Belize and the UK will continue to work together towards important priorities such as climate change, biodiversity protection, gender inclusion, diversity, and security. Projects between our two countries such as the UKCIF funded Coastal Highway is making a huge impact to the life of Belizeans and the UK government is committed to supporting Belize further in the years to come.