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St Lucia hosts third Commonwealth biennial conference
Published on March 27, 2014 Email To Friend    Print Version

By Alisha Ally

CASTRIES, St Lucia (GIS) -- Saint Lucia plays host to the Commonwealth's third biennial conference on small states from March 26-27, 2014. The Commonwealth Secretariat sees this as an important milestone for its members.

Deodat Maharaj, Commonwealth deputy secretary-general (economic and social development), said, as the international community prepares for the post-2015 goals, the concerns of small island states must be brought to the fore.

"We believe that the international community has to understand that small states, their circumstances are special. Their needs are special,” Maharaj said.

He said the devastating effects of the Christmas Eve extreme weather event resulted in significant loss of GDP for Saint Lucia and serious situations such as these must be expressed at a global level.

"We cannot use per capita GNP as a measure for financing for countries such as Saint Lucia. We need to have a broader analytical framework and we believe that the discussion that will take place will be looking at some of these issues," said the Commonwealth deputy secretary-general.

Matters down for discussion relate to climate change, economic sustainability, sustainable development and human resource development of small island states.
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