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You cannot 'form stronger relationships with the region' with visas- Premier

-Calls on Virgin Islanders to adjust minds to fact the VI’s future is tied to the region
Premier Dr The Hon Natalio D. Whealtey (R7) far left Remove stand with regional Heads of Government in February 2024 for a photo opportunity. Photo: DPI Guyana
Premier Dr the Hon Wheatley says the removal of visa restrictions will make it easier for day-to-day and week-to-week travel for nationals of regional countries who may be coming to do business or maybe coming for other purposes to the VI. Photo: Internet Source
Premier Dr the Hon Wheatley says the removal of visa restrictions will make it easier for day-to-day and week-to-week travel for nationals of regional countries who may be coming to do business or maybe coming for other purposes to the VI. Photo: Internet Source
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- Premier and Minister of Finance Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley (R7) says under his pro-Caricom agenda to forge stronger links, relations, and economic ties with nation-states in the Caribbean region, more visa restrictions will have to be removed.

The Premier was at the time speaking during a press conference on March 1, 2024, on the recently concluded 46th Regular Heads of Government meeting of Caricom where he announced that the removal of visa restrictions for Guyana is now in an advanced stage with the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) pending.

“I mean obviously, we have lots of Caribbean nationals here who are not subject to visas. You know, if you want to strengthen economic cooperation between yourself and another state, you don't do that by having visas in place. That would restrict travel for tourism purposes, for instance,” he said.

The Premier added that the removal of visa restrictions will make it easier for day-to-day and week-to-week travel for nationals of regional countries who may be coming to do business or maybe coming for other purposes to the VI.

“I believe Caricom is moving towards reducing the restrictions to travel among Member States and as Associate Member States of Caricom, you know we have to be realistic. If you want to form stronger relationships with the region, you cannot do that with visas,” he said.

He said; however, that while persons in the Virgin Islands have very strong opinions and views about persons who travel from other places, the future of the VI is tied to this region. “We're going to have to start adjusting our minds to the fact that you know…. We have tremendous potential in the region and if the region is going to develop, we shouldn't be left behind,” he added.

Visas for Jamaica & Dominican Republic 

While there is a focus on removing restrictions for Guyana, which has few visa denials and continues to be a regional powerhouse for business development, Dr Whealtey said he is yet to look closely at other situations like Jamaica or the Dominican Republic. 

“Presently a part of Caricom, I know we have visas on them and I want to strengthen the economic relationship within the Dominican Republic, to be quite frank with you. So I think we should look at all of the situations where we currently have visa restrictions and see if they're still appropriate for what it is we're trying to achieve,” he detailed.

He reiterated that if the VI wants to strengthen economic ties, for instance with Jamaica or the Dominican Republic, a look at removing visa restrictions is something the VI can’t afford to not look at.

“The visas were put there for a particular purpose, so before saying yes or no, I have to really examine the specific situation and whether the purpose for which it was put in place still needs to be maintained,” Dr Wheatley underscored.  

30 Responses to “You cannot 'form stronger relationships with the region' with visas- Premier”

  • ..... (07/03/2024, 17:13) Like (9) Dislike (5) Reply
    boi I done see you an ass you lift it for them two the whole place going fully to the pits only then the under world going take over this place
    • ummm? (08/03/2024, 13:57) Like (1) Dislike (3) Reply
      the citizens of the vi are already bottom of the barrel. no need to worry about sinking lower.
  • I agree 100%. (07/03/2024, 17:19) Like (15) Dislike (9) Reply
    Yea man. Done with the Visa business, especially for children of parents with strong bond to the BVI. Don't do like Lorna just Focusing on straight hair Guyanese. We prefer the black natty hair..our roots...
  • right (07/03/2024, 17:29) Like (3) Dislike (4) Reply
    I want you to put visas on the USA
  • WOW (07/03/2024, 18:57) Like (14) Dislike (11) Reply
    see how this man selling out little bvi
    • Free the Children. (07/03/2024, 22:13) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
      I am only in favor of visa free movement for all kids with strong family roots in a country just for vacation, no more than 7 weeks stay at a time...
    • @wow (08/03/2024, 10:33) Like (8) Dislike (5) Reply
      ummmm pardon me, what is there to sell out? the raw sewerage in the streets? The garbage pile ups? or the pipe lines that have no running water in them? or car parts from all them broken down vehicles that fall in the pot holes everyday? including mine, or the empty spaces where schools are to be built? What, what, what is he selling?
    • ummm? (08/03/2024, 14:04) Like (3) Dislike (4) Reply
      seeling out??? bruh look around, you gotta beg people to come to this dump now. i surprise the cruise industry ain stop yet as half the boating industry done gone rock.
  • Native Tongue (07/03/2024, 18:59) Like (9) Dislike (0) Reply
    Amerika doesn't change their visa requirements. Check and see. No flood gate here.
  • lol (07/03/2024, 21:28) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
  • Native Tongue (07/03/2024, 22:13) Like (16) Dislike (1) Reply
    You cannot 'form stronger relationships with the region' with visas- Premier.

    That's a load of bolony. The US alone have over 30+ categories of visas. The BVI cannot afford to be so slack with immigration and entry for business or pleasure. People have to respect this country Mr.Premier.
  • Norris Turnbull (07/03/2024, 22:20) Like (13) Dislike (1) Reply
    Mr. Premier please have a talk with Guy Hill at some point. Please do.
  • Haulup (07/03/2024, 23:01) Like (17) Dislike (0) Reply

    You ain't give this serious consideration? You ain't fixed the ten year residency, you opening the flood gates? I want my apartments rent, but not in this fashion. Willard Wheatley in his grave pulling up his pants higher on his stomach over him.

  • Lb (07/03/2024, 23:17) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    One question: for what??????? What is the benefit to the BVI?
  • opposition (08/03/2024, 00:14) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    Where are u ?
  • No Comparison (08/03/2024, 00:34) Like (5) Dislike (6) Reply
    What. Set a wicked people in that little island.
    Let hope none of you has any tithes anywhere else
    Can't compare a little full stop with great America!
    Visa / not ,still not stopping either citizens from traveling to BVI once they got visa granted still have a good portion of both !
    Guess what Great American giving visa than before !
    They the owner of the US dollars you all spending and hello
    More opportunities and lot of resources what you all lacking !
    So all these hate comments not need check you all selves!
  • Mow (08/03/2024, 05:01) Like (7) Dislike (1) Reply
    This man seems as if he further wants to destroy this place. How will criminals be stopped from entering? Right now there is too much criminal activities going on in these Virgin Islands. There is unemployment. Does he care about the welfare of his people? Will someone help him to think straight. Do not let power take over. The people of this country must be a part of the decisions.
    • BuzzBvi (08/03/2024, 08:25) Like (3) Dislike (3) Reply
      Criminals already here. You not seen the news about the Crim. Andrew Fahie.
      • @Buzzbvi (09/03/2024, 10:09) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
        ÜÜe dont mind üüith your buzzing noise. That same Andreüü help a lot of you üüith that same fast track to keep money in your pöckets .Üühat you all Leaders couldnt do for you all the BVİ did.
  • Yes to UK (08/03/2024, 10:25) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
  • NB (08/03/2024, 10:28) Like (14) Dislike (4) Reply
    Reading is fundamental. Some of yall read to blog bs and not to understand. VISA free doesn't mean that the Guyanese people gone come hay to work and invade ayo space, etc. etc.. It simply means its easier for them to come visit and enjoy ayo beautiful islands and go back home to beautiful Guyana, just like a regular tourist. But some ayo so hateful and small minded ayo can't see pass ayo nose tip.
    • @NB (08/03/2024, 12:38) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      There is need to know who is freely moving through any of the CARICOM countries. Persons with criminal records should not be allowed to travel freely from one country to the next.
    • @NB (08/03/2024, 18:31) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      People use strategic measures ..üühilst visiting they üüould be seeking jobs.BAM! İ aint see nothing üürong üüith that , but leave your bad behaviour at home please...BVİ people have a problem üüith their behavior in the üüork place. Just saying
  • enough (08/03/2024, 11:33) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Fix the entry and exit they you can think about that. I am sooooooo tired of the non-fixing attitude of our leaders.
  • SoLong (08/03/2024, 11:45) Like (1) Dislike (2) Reply
    We should be loosening up the ties. Only one way to go with down. They have always had rich natural resources but cannot rise...this oil is going to be no different. Their people still abandoning their home simply to go elsewhere and destroy be cause envy is their trait and bad Karma have them restless and wandering aimless.
  • Sick ah youand this UK take over Business. (08/03/2024, 13:23) Like (1) Dislike (2) Reply
    You stillthere with your bull shiggiddy bout UK take over? Hey, just in case you unable to admit, we have rights to. Second, how will a UK take enable us for better? I will wait. Take that colonial attitude back where it came from
  • Jassy (09/03/2024, 02:52) Like (0) Dislike (2) Reply
    It is so sad that the blacks are so racist against them own
    • @jassy (09/03/2024, 10:01) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
      Many persons üüho came to the BVİ to earn a living their üüays are horrible, they üüill also try to get you fired so your job üüouıd be available for their peöple.smh
      BVİ needs to üüise up.
  • okay (11/03/2024, 02:38) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    What about the Guyanese women who altered her ‘aids’ paperwork?

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