Foreign relations of Jamaica

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Jamaica has diplomatic relations with most nations and is a member of the United Nations and the Organization of American States. Jamaica chairs the Working Group on smaller Economies.

Jamaica Country in the Caribbean

Jamaica is an island country situated in the Caribbean Sea. Spanning 10,990 square kilometres (4,240 sq mi) in area, it is the third-largest island of the Greater Antilles and the fourth-largest island country in the Caribbean. Jamaica lies about 145 kilometres (90 mi) south of Cuba, and 191 kilometres (119 mi) west of Hispaniola.

United Nations Intergovernmental organization

The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization that was tasked to maintain international peace and security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international co-operation and be a centre for harmonizing the actions of nations. The headquarters of the UN is in Manhattan, New York City, and is subject to extraterritoriality. Further main offices are situated in Geneva, Nairobi, Vienna and The Hague. The organization is financed by assessed and voluntary contributions from its member states. Its objectives include maintaining international peace and security, protecting human rights, delivering humanitarian aid, promoting sustainable development and upholding international law. The UN is the largest, most familiar, most internationally represented and most powerful intergovernmental organization in the world. In 24 October 1945, at the end of World War II, the organization was established with the aim of preventing future wars. At its founding, the UN had 51 member states; there are now 193. The UN is the successor of the ineffective League of Nations.

Organization of American States international organization

The Organization of American States, or the OAS or OEA, is a continental organization that was founded on 30 April 1948, for the purposes of regional solidarity and cooperation among its member states. Headquartered in the United States capital Washington, D.C., the OAS's members are the 35 independent states of the Americas.


Jamaica is an active member of the Commonwealth of Nations and the Non-Aligned Movement (G-77). Jamaica is a beneficiary of the Lome Conventions, through which the European Union (EU) grants trade preferences to selected states in Asia, the Caribbean, and the Pacific, and has played a leading role in the negotiations of the successor agreement in Fiji in 2000.

Commonwealth of Nations Intergovernmental organisation

The Commonwealth of Nations, normally known as the Commonwealth, and historically the British Commonwealth, is a unique political association of 53 member states, nearly all of them former territories of the British Empire. The chief institutions of the organisation are the Commonwealth Secretariat, which focuses on intergovernmental aspects, and the Commonwealth Foundation, which focuses on non-governmental relations between member states.

Disputes - international: none

Illicit drugs: Transshipment point for cocaine from Central and South America to North America and Europe; illicit cultivation of cannabis; government has an active manual cannabis eradication program

Transshipment shipment of goods or containers to an intermediate destination

Transshipment or transhipment is the shipment of goods or containers to an intermediate destination, then to another destination.

Cannabis (drug) A psychoactive drug from the Cannabis plant used for medical or recreational purposes

Cannabis, also known as marijuana among other names, is a psychoactive drug from the Cannabis plant used for medical or recreational purposes. The main psychoactive part of cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), one of 483 known compounds in the plant, including at least 65 other cannabinoids. Cannabis can be used by smoking, vaporizing, within food, or as an extract.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade is the government ministry responsible for handling the Jamaica's external relations and foreign trade.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade is the ministry responsible for handling Jamaica's external relations and foreign trade. The ministry's current director is Senator Kamina Johnson-Smith.


Historically, Jamaica has had close ties with the UK. Trade, financial, and cultural relations with the United States are now predominant. Jamaica is linked with the other countries of the English-speaking Caribbean through the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), and more broadly through the Association of Caribbean States (ACS). Jamaica has served two 2-year terms on the United Nations Security Council, in 1979-80 and in 2000-2001.

Caribbean Community Organisation of 15 Caribbean nations and dependencies

The Caribbean Community is an organisation of fifteen Caribbean nations and dependencies having primary objectives to promote economic integration and cooperation among its members, to ensure that the benefits of integration are equitably shared, and to coordinate foreign policy. The organisation was established in 1973. Its major activities involve coordinating economic policies and development planning; devising and instituting special projects for the less-developed countries within its jurisdiction; operating as a regional single market for many of its members ; and handling regional trade disputes. The secretariat headquarters is in Georgetown, Guyana. CARICOM is an official United Nations Observer.

Association of Caribbean States regional intergovernmental organization

The Association of Caribbean States is a union of nations centered on the Caribbean Basin. It was formed with the aim of promoting consultation, cooperation, and concerted action among all the countries of the Caribbean. The primary purpose of the ACS is to develop greater trade between the nations, enhance transportation, develop sustainable tourism, and facilitate greater and more effective responses to local natural disasters.

United Nations Security Council one of the six principal organs of the UN, charged with the maintenance of international peace and security

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations (UN), charged with ensuring international peace and security, accepting new members to the United Nations and approving any changes to its charter. Its powers include the establishment of peacekeeping operations and international sanctions as well as the authorization of military actions through resolutions – it is the only body of the United Nations with the authority to issue binding resolutions to member states. The council held its first session on 17 January 1946.

In the follow-on meetings to the December 1994 Summit of the Americas, Jamaica—together with Uruguay—was given the responsibility of coordinating discussions on invigorating society.

Uruguay republic in South America

Uruguay, officially the Oriental Republic of Uruguay, is a country in the southeastern region of South America. It borders Argentina to its west and Brazil to its north and east, with the Río de la Plata to the south and the Atlantic Ocean to the southeast. Uruguay is home to an estimated 3.44 million people, of whom 1.8 million live in the metropolitan area of its capital and largest city, Montevideo. With an area of approximately 176,000 square kilometers (68,000 sq mi), Uruguay is geographically the second-smallest nation in South America, after Suriname.

Bilateral Relations

Countries with diplomatic relations with Jamaica Diplomatic relations of Jamaica.svg
Countries with diplomatic relations with Jamaica
CountryFormal Relations BeganNotes
Flag of Armenia.svg  Armenia 1 December 1995

Both countries established diplomatic relations on 1 December 1995.

Flag of Belize.svg  Belize 3 November 1982
Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil 14 October 1962See Jamaica–Brazil relations

Jamaica and Brazil established diplomatic relations on October 14, 1962. Both countries are full members of the Group of 15.

Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada 1962See Canada–Jamaica relations

Both countries established diplomatic relations in 1962. Since March 4, 1963, Canada has a high commission in Kingston. Jamaica has a high commission in Ottawa. On April 15, 2009, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper became the first Canadian head of government to address the Jamaican parliament. There are 231,000 people of Jamaican descent living in Canada. Jamaican-Canadians celebrate their island heritage through festivals held in major cities across Canada, the most recognized of which is Caribana. Caribana is held in Toronto, Ontario every year and attracts over one million visitors to the region, many of whom fly all the way from Jamaica.

Flag of Cuba.svg  Cuba

Prime Minister Percival James Patterson visited Cuba at the end of May 1997. In the fall of 1997, Jamaica upgraded its consulate in Havana to an embassy, and the nonresident Jamaican ambassador to Cuba was replaced by a resident ambassador.

Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg  China 21 November 1972See China–Jamaica relations

Relations from November 21, 1972. China has an embassy in Kingston, Jamaica. Jamaica has an embassy in Beijing.

Flag of Ghana.svg  Ghana See Ghana-Jamaica relations

Ghana, as the former Gold Coast, and Jamaica share historical links through the slave trade and forced Ashanti/Akan emigration to the Caribbean. Ghana and Jamaica have a Joint Permanent Commission, and there are plans for Ghanaian investment in Jamaica.

Flag of Guyana.svg  Guyana 26 May 1966
Flag of Haiti.svg  Haiti

Haiti has an embassy in Kingston and Jamaica has an honorary consul in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

In January, 2007, Haitian President René Préval, made a four-day working visit to Jamaica. At a press conference, Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller announced that a Joint Jamaica/Haiti Commission would be convened later that year. [3]

Flag of India.svg  India See India–Jamaica relations

Both nations inherited many cultural and political connections from British colonisation, such as membership in the Commonwealth of Nations, parliamentary democracy, the English language and cricket. [4] [5]

India has a High Commission in Kingston, [6] whilst Jamaica has a consulate in New Delhi. [7]

Flag of Japan.svg  Japan See Jamaica-Japan relations

Japan has an embassy in Kingston. Jamaica has an embassy in Tokyo.

Flag of Malaysia.svg  Malaysia See Jamaica–Malaysia relations
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico 18 March 1966See Jamaica–Mexico relations

Both nation established diplomatic relations on 18 March 1966.

Flag of Nicaragua.svg  Nicaragua

Nicaragua has an embassy in Kingston. Jamaica is represented through its embassy in Mexico City.

Flag of Pakistan.svg  Pakistan

Various discussions of aspects of Pakistan-Jamaica relations and the possible ways and means to further strengthen these relations. The potential for enhancing cooperation between the two countries. Pakistan emphasized that the excellent bilateral relationship which existed between Pakistan and Jamaica since the establishment season diplomatic relations in 1962 needed to be translated into mutually beneficial cooperation in tourism, trade, investment, education, health, science and technology and improved people to people contacts.

Flag of South Korea.svg  South Korea 13 October 1962

The establishment of diplomatic relations between the Republic of Korea and the Jamaica started on October 13, 1962 . [10]

  • Jamaica has an embassy in Seoul, South Korea. [11]
  • South Korea has an embassy in Kingston Jamaica. [12]
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom

Jamaica is the UK's third largest export market in the Caribbean after Puerto Rico and Trinidad & Tobago. In 2010, British exports were valued at £68.4 million—an increase of 48% over the previous year and imports at £47.8 million. The UK’s main exports to Jamaica are chemicals, manufactured goods, machinery, pharmaceuticals and food products. There are opportunities for UK companies in the following sectors: Education, Information Communications Technology, Agriculture, Health, Water and Renewable Energy.

Flag of the United States.svg  United States See Jamaica–United States relations
Embassy of Jamaica in Washington, D.C. Embassy of Jamaica, Washington, D.C..jpg
Embassy of Jamaica in Washington, D.C.

The United States maintains close and productive relations with the Government of Jamaica. Former Prime Minister Patterson visited Washington, DC, several times after assuming office in 1992. In April 2001, Prime Minister Patterson and other Caribbean leaders met with President George W. Bush during the Summit of the Americas in Quebec, Canada, at which a "Third Border Initiative" was launched to deepen U.S. cooperation with Caribbean nations and enhance economic development and integration of the Caribbean nations. Then-Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller attended the "Conference on the Caribbean--A 20/20 Vision" in Washington in June 2007.

President Barack Obama visited the island on April 9. 2015. President Obama managed to squeeze in some fun in between meetings with Jamaican and Caribbean leaders on his trip to Jamaica this week -- from paying homage to reggae star Bob Marley to practicing his own Jamaican accent.

The United States is Jamaica's most important trading partner: bilateral trade in goods in 2005 was over $2 billion. Jamaica is a popular destination for American tourists; more than 1.2 million Americans visited in 2006. In addition, some 10,000 American citizens, including many dual-nationals born on the island, permanently reside in Jamaica.

Jamaica and the Commonwealth

Jamaica has been a member state of the Commonwealth of Nations since 1962, when it became an independent Commonwealth realm.

Multilateral membership

African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States, Caricom, CCC, Caribbean Development Bank, United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, Food and Agriculture Organization, G-15, G-33, G-77, Inter-American Development Bank, International Atomic Energy Agency, International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, International Civil Aviation Organization, International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, International Fund for Agricultural Development, International Finance Corporation, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, International Hydrographic Organization (pending member), International Labour Organization, International Monetary Fund, International Telecommunication Union, Intelsat, Interpol, International Olympic Committee, International Organization for Migration, International Organization for Standardization, International Telecommunication Union, Latin American Economic System, Non-Aligned Movement, Organization of American States, OPANAL, Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, United Nations, UN Security Council (temporary), United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, UNESCO, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Universal Postal Union, World Health Organization, World Intellectual Property Organization, World Meteorological Organization, World Tourism Organization, World Trade Organization

See also

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After independence in 1966, Guyana sought an influential role in international affairs, particularly among Third World and non-aligned nations. It served twice on the UN Security Council. Former Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister, and Attorney General Mohamed Shahabuddeen served a 9-year term on the International Court of Justice (1987–96).

Foreign relations of Mali

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Foreign relations of Nigeria

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Saint Lucia maintains friendly relations with the major powers active in the Caribbean, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and France. Saint Lucia has no extant international disputes, aside from tension resulting from the island's status as a transit point for South American drugs destined for the United States and Europe.

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The Bahamas has strong bilateral relationships with the United Kingdom, represented by a High Commissioner in London. The Bahamas also associates closely with other nations of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

The following is a list of international organizations in which the United States of America officially participates.

These are international organizations of which Canada has membership

Foreign relations of Haiti

Haiti was one of the original members of the League of Nations, and was one of the original members of the United Nations and several of its specialized and related agencies. It is also a founding member of the Organization of American States. It maintains diplomatic relations with 37 countries, mostly in Europe and Latin America. Haiti also has diplomatic relations with the Republic of China, commonly known as Taiwan, instead of the People's Republic of China. Taiwan is one of Haiti's major trading partners and the two countries maintain very friendly relations. Haiti has also re-established very warm relations with Cuba in which a major act of bilateral cooperation has resulted in Cuba's large contribution of doctors to the country. The Haitian government has publicly shown admiration to Fidel Castro and his administration.


  1. Caribbean Net News Jamaica and Haiti to deepen diplomatic relations Archived 2007-08-05 at the Wayback Machine , January 6, 2007
  2. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-06-18. Retrieved 2013-01-06.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  4. India High Commission
  5. "Jamaican High Commissions". Retrieved 2015-03-10.
  6. Embassy of Jamaica in Mexico City Archived 2016-04-19 at the Wayback Machine
  7. Embassy of Mexico in Kingston (in English and Spanish)