At a ceremony in the Oval Office at the White House on Thursday (Sept. 17), when the ambassador presented his credentials, President Obama said the US is also working with the Government of Jamaica to improve the country’s energy diversity and security.
“We have supported your exemplary effort by providing training and equipment to the Jamaica Constabulary Force, the Jamaica Defence Force as well as working to improve overall security within the Caribbean basin,” the President told new Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency Ralph Thomas.
“The Jamaica Clean Energy Programme, supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), will help pave the way for clean energy development in Jamaica. Clean, diverse and reliable sources of energy are keys to ensuring the economic prosperity of your island,” he added.
The President welcomed the ambassador, and stated that he is looking towards working together, “to advance our common agenda as we deepen further the strong and abiding friendship of our two countries”.
In his reply, Ambassador Thomas complimented the US Government for the assistance and support it continues to give to Jamaica, citing areas such as HIV/AIDS prevention, education, human rights, and longstanding programmes administered through USAID and the US Peace Corps.
He also noted the support provided to the Caribbean region under the Caribbean Basin Initiative (CBI).
Ambassador Thomas pointed out that a significant portion of the Diaspora has made the US their home, “cementing the bonds between our people beyond the formal level of engagement”.