The Ministry for External Affairs, International Trade and Investment is responsible for the co-ordination of Saint Lucia’s international relations. Historically, the main focus of foreign affairs in Saint Lucia has been economic development, with the government seeking to establish balanced international relations which emphasise mutual economic co-operation, trade and investment. The majority of the country’s foreign policy is conducted through membership to the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS). Saint Lucia has good bilateral relations with many countries, including major powers active in the Caribbean such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada and France. These friendly relations are maintained through embassies. Saint Lucia is a member of the United Nations with a permanent mission in Geneva and New York.
Bilateral co-operation exists between Saint Lucia and a number of other countries. In the Capital City, Castries, there are around ten foreign embassies and consulates, with a couple or so in Gloss Islet, and at least two in Rodney Bay. These embassies and consulates provide information and valuable resources regarding the safety of international travelers and residents. For example the Cuban Embassy in Saint Lucia provides many services for its citizens including migratory services, notary services and assistance with the requesting of documents in Cuba whilst abroad. The Cuban Embassy also facilitates and publicises business between Cuban enterprises and the Saint Lucian market; in 2011 the Cuban company LABIOFAM invested in one of Saint Lucia’s natural products, ‘Vidatox’, which resulted in development of the first homeopathic medicine for the treatment of cancer.
Saint Lucia has embassies, high commissions and consulates located in over 20 countries around the world, ranging from nearby countries such as Barbados through to those further afield such as Australia. As a member of the United Nations, Saint Lucia maintains permanent missions in both New York and Geneva, and works towards international economic development, friendly relations among nations and respect for rights and freedoms. To strengthen Saint Lucia’s commitment to promoting unity among countries of the Eastern Caribbean, the country maintains embassies in both other Caribbean countries themselves and all major powers active in this region, such as Canada and France. Embassies and other foreign missions provide information on consular matters such as passports, visas and travel.