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Fact Sheet: Caribbean Third Border Initiative

April 21, 2001

"We are also committed to deepening our cooperation throughout the hemisphere in fighting the spread of HIV/AIDS, responding to natural disasters, and making sure the benefits of globalization are felt in even the smallest economies. These goals are at the heart of the "Third Border" initiative we have launched with the countries of the Caribbean. "

President George W. Bush

April 21, 2001

The Caribbean nations, our often overlooked "third border," are important partners on trade, health and education issues and regional democracy. Illegal drug trafficking, migrant smuggling and financial crime, however, threaten both United States and regional security interests. In order to better focus the U.S.-Caribbean relationship and work with our partners on a number of capacity building tasks, the Bush Administration has developed a "Third Border Initiative."

The effort consists of a targeted package of programs designed to enhance diplomatic, economic, health, education and law enforcement cooperation and collaboration. While not an all-inclusive inventory of U.S.-Caribbean cooperation, the Third Border Initiative seeks to focus new funding and assistance on those areas where the Bush Administration sees the greatest increased need.

  • $20 million in HIV/AIDS funding for FY2002, which represents a tripling of U.S. HIV/AIDS prevention and education funding.
  • Establish a teacher training "Center For Excellence" to boost teacher skills and performance thereby enhancing regional capacity to adapt to the globalized economy.
  • Increase funding for Disaster Preparedness and Mitigation efforts to shield critical commercial and environmental infrastructure from natural disasters, such as hurricanes.
  • Provide assistance to improve regional civil aviation oversight infrastructure and mechanisms, increasing safety of air traffic for greater regional trade, commerce, and tourism.
  • Provide additional funding for critical areas of law enforcement cooperation, such as anti-money laundering, professional development of police and prosecutors, and anti-corruption training and assistance throughout the Caribbean.

George W. Bush, Fact Sheet: Caribbean Third Border Initiative Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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