UK Government and UK Overseas Territories Governments modernise partnership


The Governments of the UK and of the UK Overseas Territories of Anguilla, Ascension, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, Pitcairn Islands, St Helena, Tristan da Cunha, and Turks and Caicos Islands have agreed a Joint Declaration: A Modern Partnership for a Stronger British Family.


The proposed development UK Overseas Territories Joint Declaration was first presented by the Foreign Secretary at the Joint Ministerial Council (JMC) in May 2023, and was consulted on over a few months and finalised at November’s JMC. This strategy builds on shared history and values, and modernises our relationship with the UK Government and strengthens our combined ability to overcome global challenges. Importantly, it recognises the need to engage with the democratic governments of the Overseas Territories in a way that supports our wishes and interests to develop as a Global UK family.


MLA Barkman,  President of the UK Overseas Territories Association convened Overseas Territory’s leaders input in May and November. She notes that the Declaration builds on the work of the White Paper 2012 and offers a much needed refreshed approach that can tailor to the needs of the individual territories.


“The challenges of the Overseas Territories are diverse and the strategy that it sets out agrees a number of principles from which individual priorities can be discussed through bilateral ‘compacts’, structured discussions, between the UK Government and each Territory’s Government that can be elevated for action at a Ministerial level.


“The commitment to a mutual future is clearly reaffirmed by this strategy. What the Falkland Islands Government make of it now will depend how we choose to lean in to the bilateral ‘compacts’. The Falklands have enjoyed a growing relationship with the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, and this has led to useful work and knowledge sharing in areas that support our biodiversity. This is an example of the joined up working that this strategy formalises and can strengthen. There is a lot we can achieve together and this places us in a fortunate position to have engagement prioritised within the UK Government more routinely.


“I’d like to extend my personal thanks to the UK Overseas Territory Governments and their UK Representatives, and the UK Government and FCDO team for their extensive efforts in progressing this work.”


  1. The final Declaration attached and the link on


  1. The link to Minister Rutley’s Written Ministerial Statement<>
  2. Link to the UK’s Press Notice<>


*** ENDS