14 Feb 2024

CI Ministerial visit in Paris


From Monday 12 February to Wednesday 14 February 2024, a delegation from the Channel Islands went to Paris to meet different political actors. Among them, French senators and deputies members of the study group on the Channel Islands (=APPG), the president of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the National Assembly, officers of the British Embassy in Paris, the British ambassador to the UNESCO and the Irish ambassador to France.

This delegation comprised the Minister of Sustainable Economic Development of Jersey, Deputy Kirsten Morel and the Member of the Policy and Resources Committee with responsibility for external relations in Guernsey, Deputy Jonathan Le Tocq. Meetings took place in a warm atmosphere with relevant discussions on the future of cooperation with the Channel Islands.

Ministers prioritised the Channel Islands’ commitment to fostering positive relations with France and other European partners, while maintaining close cooperation across various shared interests. Both Guernsey and Jersey have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Normandy Region and La Manche Department, as well as with the Brittany Region and the Ille-et-Vilaine Department respectively.

Minister Kirsten Morel highlighted the enduring links between France and Jersey politically, culturally and historically, while emphasizing the importance of strengthening these connections with its nearest neighbour:

“Our discussions underscored the importance of regional cooperation between the Channel Islands and France and our joint commitment to further developing this collaboration. Additionally, we’ve engaged with principal political stakeholders in Paris discussing key areas of interest such as connectivity. This engagement allowed us to explore potential economic and commercial ties, working towards a sustainable and resilient future, for which France plays an important role.”

Reflecting on the visit, Deputy Jonathan Le Tocq remarked:

“France is a key European partner, with whom we share historic, cultural and geographic links.  As Guernsey continues to develop its international identity and bilateral relations with partners around the world, this visit provided a timely opportunity to further strengthen our working relationship with the central authorities in Paris as part of our good neighbour policy, supporting the ongoing and positive engagement that we have with our regional partners in Normandy and Brittany. The visit enabled discussion on a range of issues that are priorities for Guernsey, such as energy and connectivity, on which we have shared interests with France. I look forward to continuing to work closely with our sister island of Jersey as we continue to further develop this relationship with our closest European neighbour.”

Guernsey's Bailiff and other island officials