All set for CELAC VIII summit
Flags of the CELAC Member States adorn the Conference Room for today’s Summit.
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March 1, 2024
All set for CELAC VIII summit

Despite challenges with securing accommodation for regional and international delegates, all systems appear to be in order for the eighth summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC).

A race to put the finishing touches on the new Sandals Resort in Buccament finished just in time for the March 1 summit where more than 400 delegates, Heads of States and officials from 33 member states, including from CARICOM, will be in attendance. The gathering also includes representation from India, the United Nations, and the European Union.

Un SeCretary General Antonio Guterres (second from right), shares a light moment with Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves (right), and other officials at the VIP Lounge of the Argyle International Airport .

Today’s summit will be the first time that the event is being hosted in an OECS country, and also the first time that a sitting United Nations Secretary General has visited St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG).

Delegates began arriving in SVG as early as February 28 for today’s summit and its conclusion will see the adoption of the Kingstown Declaration which will reflect the priority interests of all CELAC member countries.

During a February 29 bilateral meeting with the United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres at the Argyle International Airport, Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves revealed that the Kingstown Declaration is “more than 100 paragraphs long”.

“CELAC is an integration mechanism of Latin America and the Caribbean which constitutes a huge bloc of 650 million people in 33 states with countries as large as Brazil…and countries of tremendous influence. This particular bloc of countries has grown in influence in the world,” Prime Minister Gonsalves said.


“The details about the functional cooperation and advocacy you would see in the outcome document which is more than 100 paragraphs…and in the speeches of all the various governments and all 33 states are represented tomorrow [Friday], not all of them Heads of States.”

Delegates at today’s opening ceremony will hear remarks from National Coordinator of CELAC, Dr Douglas Slater, the official report to be presented by SVG’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Presidency Pro-Tempore, 2023 Keisal Peters, as well as Country Statements by Heads of States and Government throughout the day’s proceedings.

The temporary presidency of CELAC will be handed over from SVG to the republic of Honduras.