By Gerald V. Paul
Trinidad and Tobago Consul General Dr. Vidhya Tota Gyan-Maharaj says she is honoured to serve at the new dean of the CARICOM Consular Corps.
She said she will continue the good work of former dean, Jamaica’s Consul General Seth George Ramocan and that she looks forward to being engaged in free trade discussions with Canada and CARICOM.
Despite long-lasting issues, the strategy for an economic, trade and bi-lateral relationship with Canada is a win-win proposition that has to be pursued vigorously, she believes.
The challenge of priority, market access, high value and services is an important component for consideration and central to the CARICOM marketplace.
She is expected to look at how to facilitate labour exchanges, migrant workers, short-term employment opportunities and impact on Caribbean nationals. The sensitive issues of refugees, deportation and other security matters will also be discussed.
“Canada was the first country in the world to recognize our newly independent nation (Trinidad and Tobago) in 1962,” she noted. “Thank you Canada for your standing support and welcoming with open arms to all 100,000 nationals who have made Canada their new home away from home and who have added our vibrant cultural heritage to the Canadian mosaic.”
Gyan-Maharaj said the two governments have signed numerous memoranda of understanding on education, exchange of students, law and justice reform, with assistance towards building a detention centre and interest in advancing marine education and training with Memorial University of Newfoundland and Brock University.