Business and government officials from Trinidad and Tobago are to celebrate their national independence day in Atlanta, four days early, in an effort to establish closer business and cultural ties with Georgia, said Ruthven Lequay, treasurer of the Trinidad and Tobago Association of Georgia Inc.

Kirk Francois, consul general of Trinidad and Tobago in Miami, and representatives from Colonial Life Insurance Company Ltd., one of Trinidad’s largest diversified financial services companies, are expected to attend the four-day gathering. The event is to include an Independence Day Gala, as well as business and immigration workshops.

The delegation is being welcomed by the Trinidad and Tobago Association, a nonprofit organization founded in 2003 that offers cultural and economic support to Trinidad and Tobagians living in Georgia. The group is also working to facilitate business discussions between representatives from DeKalb County and officials in Trinidad and Tobago.

“Our association has met with representatives from DeKalb County to discuss bilateral trade opportunities between Decatur and Trinidad and Tobago,” Mr. Lequay told GlobalAtlanta in an interview last week. He also mentioned that the association hopes to establish a chamber of commerce for Trinidad and Tobago in the Atlanta area, which would act as a business resource for some of the 3,000-5,000 Trinidad and Tobagians estimated to be living in the Atlanta area.

While the country’s Independence Day is Aug. 31, the association is celebrating the national holiday on Friday, Aug. 26, with an Independence Day Gala at the Omega Psi Phi building on Snapfinger Parkway in Decatur.

The group is also helping to put together an immigration and passport processing workshop that will be held from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on Saturday and a business discussion Sunday evening at Kaiso Lounge, 2180 Northlake Parkway in Tucker. The Sunday evening event is to feature presentations by Mr. Francois and representatives from Colonial Life.

While in Atlanta, the delegation is also expected to be welcomed by the Trinidadian cultural and sporting organization, Boro Keets Atlanta, as well as St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church in Decatur, where Trinidadian Brian Jemmott ministers.

For more information on the delegation’s visit, contact Mr. Lequay at (770) 322-7026 or (770) 987-1534.