Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade – Johnson Smith calls on CELAC to take action on digital Transformation as part of COVID-19 recovery plans at the twentieth meeting of Foreign Ministers of CELAC held within the framework of the 75th Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Thursday, September 24.
Foreign Affairs Minister, Senator the Honourable Kamina Johnson Smith called on the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) to accelerate the digital transformation process at the national, regional, and global levels, to address the systematic inequalities exposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Referring to restrictions on movement arising from the pandemic, Johnson Smith pointed to other important service areas that have also been impacted, including education, government services and business continuity. This, she continued, emphasizes the importance of internet connectivity and wide-spread access to technology as enablers of inclusive and sustainable development. In discussions on the “Post-COVID-19 Recovery Plan” for CELAC, the Foreign Minister underscored that, “continued urgent attention is required to ensure that the Community, particularly the most vulnerable among us, have equitable and affordable access to COVID-19 vaccination and treatment options.”
She added that “it remains important to secure adequate and affordable financing for Highly Indebted, Middle-Income Countries (HIMICs) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS).” In highlighting the continued need for advocacy for reform of the global financial architecture, the Minister stated that “building on the collaboration and engagement engendered by CELAC would be critical to driving this reform process.”