On April 21st, 2021, His Excellency Bruce Lendon presented his Letter of Introduction to Honourable Allen Chastanet, Prime Minister of Saint Lucia, formally assuming his position as High Commissioner of Australia to Saint Lucia.
The ceremony was hosted virtually due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Before his appointment as High Commissioner, His Excellency Bruce Lendon was a career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Australia. He was previously the Director, Afghanistan Political Section. Before that he served Australia overseas as Counsellor, Australian High Commission in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, Deputy Head of Mission, Australian Embassy, Cairo, Egypt and First Secretary, Australian Embassy, Tel Aviv, State of Israel.
During the meeting with Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, His Excellency Bruce Lendon, highlighted the importance of strengthening cooperation between Saint Lucia and Australia, especially in light of the growing economic, social and developmental challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In this regard, Prime Minister Chastanet outlined the key measures introduced by the Government of Saint Lucia to confront these issues, and emphasized the need for Saint Lucia, as well as other Small Island Developing States (SIDS), to obtain greater access to vaccines and other critical medical supplies. Additionally, Prime Minister Chastanet underscored other major difficulties currently faced by SIDS, including the reputational damage of EU blacklisting, impacts of climate change, limited access to concessional funding and the need to modify the OECD vulnerability index of Least Developed Countries (LDCs).
The High Commissioner, on his part, reiterated the commitment of Australia to build on the existing ties of friendship between the two nations, as well continue its support for the cause of SIDS in international forums.