Handover Ceremony for China’s Military Aid to Barbados

Press Release JC/BGIS | 26 FEB 18
Photography: Lieutenant Shímar Gollop Lance Corporal Bellamy C

The Barbados Defence Force received a boost in its disaster preparedness and response capabilities with a donation of equipment from the People’s Republic of China.  The new equipment comprising 4×4 vehicles, a mobile kitchen, a refrigerator van, a tractor and a vessel are part of a BBD $6million donation to the Barbados Defence Force from the People’s Liberation Army of the People’s Republic of China.
The equipment was officially handed over by Chinese Ambassador Yan Xiusheng to Chief of Staff of the BDF, Colonel Glyne Grannum, during a brief ceremony at St. Ann’s Fort 26 February 2018.

Ambassador Yan Xiusheng with Chief of Staff Colonel Glyne Grannum

In accepting the donation, Colonel Glyne Grannum, Chief of Staff of the Barbados Defence Force, said the donation of the equipment was very timely as the BDF prepared for the 2018 hurricane season, which forecasters predict, would be as active as in 2017. The equipment he stressed, would enhance the BDF’s disaster preparedness and response capabilities to effect search and rescue operation, flood relief and distress response operations among other things.

He added: “It [equipment] is very timely. We had a very bad hurricane season in 2017 so we are very grateful that we have additional tools to help with disaster response in Barbados and enhance our ability to return the island to a state of normalcy in the fastest possible time.

In turn, Ambassador Yan said the equipment was a demonstration of the strong friendship between China and Barbados and represented the fourth largest amount of aid from the People’s Liberation Army to Barbados since the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries some 41 years ago.

Ambassador Yan stressed that over the past 41 years, China-Barbados relations have enjoyed healthy and stable development with enhanced political mutual trust, fruitful pragmatic cooperation, enhanced people-to-people exchanges and deepened military cooperation.

The Ambassador stated that “A friend in need, is a friend indeed,” and he thanked the BDF for its assistance in the evacuation of Chinese nationals from Dominica in the aftermath of hurricane Maria in September 2017.  China will make joint efforts with its international counterparts to tackle global and regional security challenges by providing public security solutions and expanding its friend circle.  It is his hope that the military aid would enhance the BDF’s defence capacity and safeguard the economy and social development of Barbados.

Ambassador Xiusheng, Chief of Staff Colonel Grannum and Captain Wesley Beckles inspect the fleet.

After the presentation, Colonel Grannum and other members of the BDF, the Barbados Coast Guard and Ambassador Yan inspected the vehicles where officials explained their features to Ambassador Yan.