New US ambassador to Seychelles accredited |22 March 2023
The new ambassador of the United States of America to the Republic of Seychelles, Henry Jardine, presented his credentials to President Wavel Ramkalawan yesterday morning at State House.
He was accompanied by his wife, Kathleen and the new US counsellor for Seychelles in Victoria, James Donegan. Also present were the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Tourism, Sylvestre Radegonde and the principal secretary for Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Vivienne Fock-Tave.
Following his meeting with President Ramkalawan, Ambassador Jardine paid a courtesy call on Vice-President Ahmed Afif.
Speaking to the press, Ambassador Jardine said that he and President Ramkalawan discussed a range of issues mostly related to how the two countries can collaborate in areas of maritime security, law enforcement, social and economic development and promoting and speaking about issues of democracy given that we have made great strides in developing our democratic institution which can be a model for the African and Indian Ocean regions.
Ambassador Jardine, who expressed his hope of a very high level US leadership delegation visiting our country in the future, said that the US is looking at ways to re-establish its permanent presence in the country but it will sadly take some time given the procedures that have to be followed.
He added that in the mean time they have posted a resident senior advisor in the person of Mr Donegan to further expand collaboration engagement between the two countries.
He noted that the US-Seychelles joint maritime military exercise taking place at present, following the participation of both countries in the success of the Cutlass Express 2023 last week, are among some of the many collaborations, among others to follow, between the two states.
Speaking about visa for entry into the US by the locals, Ambassador Jardine said that while waiting for the establishment of a permanent US embassy, they are looking at ways to provide more flexibility to the visa process whereby individuals who are holding valid existing visas and are seeking for renewal in future, will not have to travel to Mauritius for the interview.
He noted that given the visa issue is very important to President Ramkalawan, they are looking at how they can be supportive especially now that our country has introduced its new biometric passport.
In regards to the US-African Leaders Summit in 2022, where the former pledged $55 million for the development of African countries, including ours, Ambassador Jardine said that in relation to that summit, the US is looking at how it can support our country in areas related to the environment, economic development, initiatives related to the blue economy and in the blue bond to help improve the maritime environment among others.
“It’s been a positive and wonderful day for me today to present my credentials and to be finally here on the ground to represent the United States to the people of Seychelles,” said Ambassador Jardine, who expressed his appreciation for the warm welcome he received from the President and Vice-President.
Ambassador Jardine, who is also the US ambassador-designate to the Republic of Mauritius, will be based in the latter’s capital, Port Louis. He replaces Ambassador David Riemer who was accredited to our country on February 6, 2018.
The United States of America and Seychelles established diplomatic relations on June 29, 1976.