Britain will adopt a new approach to improve collaboration with the Overseas Territories (OTs), according to a statement from the Joint Ministerial Council (JMC) on May 12, 2023.
This new approach includes each government department having an assigned Minister responsible for their department’s relationship with the OTs.
In an official statement, the JMC, which met last week, said it welcomed an announcement from the Foreign Secretary of a “new UK Government strategy” on the OTs.
“We look forward to collaborating in its development, setting the direction for a relationship firmly based on the principles of collaboration and mutual interest,” the statement said.
“The OTs further welcome that each government department will have an assigned Minister responsible for their department’s relationship with the Territories.
“These ministers will meet as a group chaired by the Minister for the Overseas Territories.”
UK Foreign Secretary James S. Cleverly has said the UK and the Overseas Territories 'are family and united by shared values'.
'We are family & united by shared values'- UK Foreign Secretary
Foreign Secretary James S. Cleverly said: “This Joint Ministerial Council demonstrates the importance of the partnership between us – we are family and united by shared values. I look forward to working together on the UK's overseas territories strategy, solidifying our relationship on the principles of collaboration and mutual interest.”
While the OTs may be united by shared values, there are some values that are not shared, such as the legalisation of same-sex marriages, which the OTs have been resisting despite pressure from London.The Virgin Islands
was represented at the JMC by Premier and Minister of Finance Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley (R7) and Deputy Premier Hon Lorna G. Smith, OBE (AL).