Ambassador Amalia Mai, chief executive officer in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, led Belize’s delegation at the Third Meeting of the Administrative Commission under the Partial Scope Agreement (PSA) between the Government of Belize and the Government of the Republic of Guatemala from August 12 to 13, 2021, at the Leigh Richardson Building in Belmopan. The Government of the Republic of Guatemala was represented by Alba Edith Flores Ponce de Molina, Vice Minister of Integration and Foreign Trade.
Official Remarks were made by Ambassador Mai and her counterpart Vice-Minister Alba Edith Flores Ponce de Molina. Hon. Eamon Courtenay, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Immigration, delivered the keynote address. He expressed the urgency to reconvene the work of the Administrative Commission. He asserted that the private sector in both countries is ready to trade and invest. Minister Courtenay highlighted that the function of the Administrative Commission is to lay out the framework for formal trade to occur, with the objective to identify quick and practical solutions to facilitate trade and expand the PSA. Both countries are committed to working towards mutual economic growth and development through the strengthening of their relationship.
A number of issues were covered during the meeting, including food and plant safety, customs and trade facilitation matters, review of existing agriculture quotas, the use of updated tariff codes, land transportation for goods into Guatemala, and payment facilitation. Both countries agreed to convene meetings of all trade facilitation committees established under the agreement within 30 days to commence work on the outstanding issues. The Commission also agreed to pursue an expansion of the list of products covered by the agreement and exchanged lists indicating new products of interest.
Ambassador Amalia Mai was supported by senior officials from the Directorate General for Foreign Trade, the Attorney General’s Ministry, the Belize Customs and Excise Department, the Belize Agricultural Health Authority, the Belize Bureau of Standards, Department of Transport, Ministry of Agriculture, and representatives from the private sector.