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Dutch Ambassador takes to two wheels on official visit to Jersey

22 February 2024

Jersey continued to bolster its links with European counterparts this month with a visit from the Dutch Ambassador, His Excellency Karel van Oosterom.  

The official visit focused on enhancing and developing links between the Island and the Netherlands while emphasising the value of the Dutch community – and the wider European community – to Jersey's economy, society and culture, with a particular focus on green transport. 

The Ambassador was welcomed at Jersey Airport by the Lieutenant-Governor, Vice Admiral Jerry Kyd, and later met with the Bailiff of Jersey, Sir Timothy Le Cocq. Diplomatic talks were held with Jersey's Chief Minister, Deputy Lyndon Farnham, and the Minister for External Relations, Deputy Ian Gorst. Renewable energy, coastal protection and green finance were at the forefront of these discussions.

Whilst in the island the Ambassador toured the States building and Royal Court and visited Jersey Finance, where he attended round table meetings with various stakeholders including Jersey Overseas Aid, the finance team within government, member firms with links to the Netherlands and industry leaders. Green financing, sustainable finance, transition to green energy and digitalisation were all prominent themes.​

The Ambassador, a keen cyclist himself, also viewed some key parts of Jersey's cycling infrastructure and took a bike ride with Minister for Infrastructure, Constable Andy Jehan, around the St Peter's Valley cycle link. Later, he met members of Jersey's Dutch community at the St Helier Town Hall.

His Excellency Karel van Oosterom said: “Our team enjoyed the Jersey hospitality during our fact-finding mission to the Channel Islands post-Brexit these past two days. We look forward to following up on many insightful conversations and explore further cooperation between the Netherlands and Jersey on issues such as cycling, renewable energy, coastal protection, and green finance."

The Minister for External Relations, Deputy Ian Gorst, said: “We are delighted to extend a warm welcome to the Ambassador on his inaugural official visit to Jersey. This visit offers a significant occasion to engage in important discussions on further strengthening the ties between Jersey and the Netherlands. Additionally, it allows us to reaffirm our dedication to safeguarding the welfare of Jersey's Dutch community." 

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