US Vice President Mike Pence Lauds Prime Minister Andrew Holness

WASHINGTON, DC.  — United States Vice President Mike Pence has lauded Prime Minister Andrew Holness for his outstanding leadership of Jamaica and by extension, the Caribbean region.

“I want to thank the prime minister of Jamaica for his strong leadership of his country and in the Caribbean community. I also want to thank Jamaica for its strong leadership at the Organization of American States (OAS), as both countries (USA, Jamaica) work towards advancing key priorities from improving security, law and enforcement, public health and energy development. These corporations have benefited both countries.”

Addressing the swearing-in ceremony of the US seventeenth ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency Donald Tapia at the White House on Tuesday, August 20th.

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The US VP, Pence underscored the fact that the USA and Jamaica are natural partners. He noted that both countries share cultural and economic ties as well as the core beliefs in free government and the rule of law.

He offered that given the strong alliance, both nations will continue to work towards strengthening the bond.

He referenced the appointment of the new ambassador as a demonstration of the US’s commitment in building a safer and more prosperous western hemisphere.

US VP Mike Pence (right) administers the oath of office to the newly appointed Ambassador of the US to Jamaica Donald R Tapia (left), during ceremonies at the White House, Washington DC, on August 20. At center is Jane Tapia, sister of Ambassador Tapia.
-Derrick Scott photos.

In his remarks, Ambassador Tapia said he was honored to serve as the 17th envoy to Jamaica and was commitment to the task at hand.

“Jamaica’s proximity to the United States, shared values, culture and language can facilitate increased engagement, investment, trade and cooperation. Jamaica is a respected leader within the region a strong partnership the United States deeply values”.

He also noted that Jamaica is ripe for the development of renewable energy sources like geothermal, solar and wind power, as well as LNG.

He said further that while its country’s economy continues to grow, high electricity rates reduce economic competitiveness and prevent Jamaica from investing in other areas, such as education and business enterprises.

“I am committed to working with U.S. businesses and within the U.S. government to build relationships with Jamaica in these areas”, he said.

Ambassador Tapia, a former Arizona entrepreneur said that he will encourage the prosperity of the Jamaican people across the island, and the economic success and political ties in the Caribbean region.

Ambassador Tapia will take up his new appointment in Jamaica at the end of the month.


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