Tristan represented at key UK Overseas Territories conference

Meetings with UK politicians herald start of JMC week

Report and photos from Tristan Government UK Representative Chris Carnegy

The week that will bring the Joint Ministerial Council between the UK and the Overseas Territories got underway on 13th November with two key meetings with UK Politicians.

Via video link from Tristan, Chief Islander James Glass met the Overseas Territories Minister David Rutley. This 'bilateral' meeting brought an opportunity to raise key concerns around vessel access, renewable energy and budget pressures.

Photo from David Rutley MP showing the remarkable video link meeting held on 13th November.
In the foreground, UK Overseas Territories Minister David Rutley (left) with St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Governor Nigel Phillips sit at a desk in the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office in Whitehall.
On the screen Tristan da Cunha Chief Islander James Glass sits alongside Administrator Philip Kendall
in the island's Administration Building (sometimes also called 'Whitehall').

UK Overseas Territories Minister David Rutley

Chris with Labour's shadow Territories Minister Stephen Doughty

In London I met Labour's shadow Territories Minister Stephen Doughty, along with other OT heads of delegation. I stressed that any incoming government should uphold the UK's treaty obligation to support the well-being and economic advancement of Territories like Tristan - including providing minimum acceptable levels of access. Mr Doughty took that point on board, and pledged a more collaborative relationship with OTs if Labour is elected.

Overseas Territory delegates meet with Labour's shadow Territories Minister Stephen Doughty (in the middle)
with his defence colleague Luke Pollard to his left and Chris Carnegy far right.

The meetings took place as former prime minister David Cameron was installed as the UK's new foreign secretary. He is one of the creators of the 'Blue Belt' marine-conservation programme in which Tristan plays a major part.