The government of Saint Lucia is hoping that the 5th CARICOM-CUBA Summit will result in greater collaboration between the country and Cuba, particularly in the areas of trade, education and health.
Thousands of Saint Lucians have received free education from the Cuban government, while the Island has benefitted from the skills of Cuban-trained doctors, nurses, engineers and agronomists.
Now, the Island is also hoping to expand trade with Cuba, as it tries to reduce public expenditure and help reduce a fiscal deficit.
Cuba's Ambassador to Saint Lucia says his country will continue to help Saint Lucia in its national development.
"The Caribbean and Latin American people must unite to face our challenges. I want to assure you that Cuba will resist and overcome all obstacles as we continue to create in Cuba a model of a humane and just society," Jorge Soberon, Cuban Ambassador to Saint Lucia told teleSUR.
In 2013, CARICOM and Cuba celebrated 40 years of diplomatic relations.
The Prime Ministers from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) will meet with President Raul Castro and his cabinet to review cooperation agreements in areas including health."The Cuban expertise is very welcome and very necessary. It comes back to what we talked about earlier about in terms of all of us coming together to help one another to respond to patients' needs and the safety of all,” said Independent Senator and pathologist Dr. Stephen King. “That is how we have to operate not just nationally, but as a region. I've always been proud of Cuba and Cuba's response in the health sector."
Cuban doctors and nurses run the Ophthalmology Unit of the Victoria Hospital, Saint Lucia's main health care institution. The Unit was donated to Saint Lucia by the Government of Cuba.