CARICOM reform moving apace: SG
The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat is proceeding apace with implementing the Community Strategic Plan 2015-2019, including the preparation of a Strategic Business Plan for the Secretariat, guided by the recently established Change Management Office.
This assurance was given to the Community Council of Ministers by Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, CARICOM Secretary-General on Friday as he addressed the opening of the 37th meeting of the Community’s second highest organ, referred to as The Council.
It is meeting in Georgetown, Guyana to consider the CARICOM Secretariat’s work programme and budget for the year 2016, ahead of the Twenty-Seventh Inter-Sessional Meeting in Belize in February. This meeting of the Council is on the heels of a meeting of the CARICOM Committee of Ambassadors, which, functioning as the preparatory body for The Council, met on Wednesday and deliberated on issues for its Agenda.
Secretary-General LaRocque said a critical factor of the Strategic Plan was the establishment of a planning, monitoring and evaluation, and reporting system which was being developed with financing from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).
In urging The Council’s positive consideration of the Meeting’s agenda, he said: “Ministers, all our plans and activities are geared towards the sustainable development of our Community, through building our economic, environmental, social and technological resilience. As has been demonstrated throughout our 43-year history, our achievements have been rooted in our united actions. As recently as last December, that unity proved its immense worth at the COP 21 in Paris. Our unified approach resulted in the attainment of favourable outcomes on an issue of existential importance to us, Climate Change.”
That spirit and approach must propel all efforts to overcome the challenges to providing a “safe, viable and sustainable Community for all citizens,” Secretary-General LaRocque stated.
The CARICOM Secretariat is one of the implementing partners of the Community Strategic Plan along with the Regional Institutions and the Member States.
Secretary-General LaRocque extended welcome to Senator the Honourable Dennis Moses, Minister of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs of Trinidad and Tobago, who was attending his first Meeting of this Council. He told the Minister that the fresh ideas and perspectives he will no doubt bring to this Council will come at a most opportune time as the Community moves ahead with its Reform Process including the way it conducts its business.