France and Trinidad and Tobago

Political relations

  • French Ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago: Mr Hédi Picquart
  • Ambassador of Trinidad and Tobago to France (in residence in Brussels): Mr Colin Michaêl Connelly
  • Honorary Consul of Trinidad and Tobago in France: Mr Alain Majani d’Inguimbert (45, rue de Babylone - 75007 Paris - tel.: +33 (0)1.45.67.09.98, fax: +33 (0)1.47.53.85.85)

Bilateral agreements

  • 18 April 1978: Economic and technical cooperation agreement
  • 5 August 1987 Agreement on double taxation and prevention of income tax evasion
  • 28 October 1993: Reciprocal Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (IPPA, entry into force in April 1996)

Visits

Main French visits

Presidential visits

  • 27 November 2009: the President of the Republic attended the Commonwealth Heads of State and Government Meeting with the aim of giving new impetus to negotiations on climate change, two weeks ahead of the Copenhagen Conference.

Ministerial visits

  • May 1998 (Barbados): meeting between Mr Josselin, French Minister Delegate for Cooperation and Francophonie, and Mr Maraj, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Trinidad and Tobago.
  • December 2014 (Lima): meeting between Ms Annick Girardin, French Minister of State for Development and Francophonie, and Mr Winston Dookeran, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Trinidad and Tobago.

Main visits to France:

Ministerial visits:

  • September 2006: visit by Mr Valley, Minister of Trade; Meeting with Ms Lagarde, French Minister Delegate for Foreign Trade.

Economic relations

We have a large trade deficit with Trinidad and Tobago, although the volume of our trade remains relatively limited (we are the country’s 17th-largest supplier, with market share of 1.2%). A large share of this trade involves the communities of Martinique, Guadeloupe and French Guiana, behind 52% of exports and 23% of purchases in 2014. In 2016, our total exports stood at €30 million and our imports at €180 million.

The major French corporations Bouygues (major public and private buildings) and Vinci (road junctions and the capital’s bypass) have a long-standing presence, although Vinci has pulled out of the country since 2016 as the projects it relied on failed to come to fruition. Bouygues has fulfilled two major contracts in Trinidad and Tobago, one for the development of the capital’s sea front and another for the construction of a 26-floor office tower. Air Liquide is building a natural gas liquefaction plant. Other major groups present: Schlumberger, Perenco, ATR. The net flow of French foreign direct investments in the country was estimated at €91 million by the Bank of France in 2015.

Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation

Our bilateral cooperation is focused on the teaching of French. The Port of Spain Alliance Française branch has a little over 300 learners. Cooperation with French communities in the Americas is growing, such as in the field of tropical agronomy with the French Agricultural Research Centre for International Development (CIRAD, on use of sugar cane in animal feed) and fisheries with the French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea (IFREMER, Pargo project). A CIRAD expert in the cultivation of cacao has been seconded for several years to the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI), a member of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) attached to the University of the West Indies (UWI).

For more information, please consult the website of the French embassy in Trinidad and Tobago

Updated: 30.01.18