CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry of Suriname, the Hon Ferdinand Welzijn and Assistant Secretary-General, Trade and Economic Integration, Mr. Joseph Cox at the opening of the 44th Meeting of COTED
“The people of the Region are asking us to do better”, the Secretary-General said.
He was at the time delivering remarks at the opening of the Forty-Fourth Meeting of the Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) at the Pegasus Hotel in Georgetown, Guyana. The COTED is responsible for the promotion of trade and economic development of CARICOM. In particular, it is required to oversee the development, operation and implementation of the CSME.
The CARICOM Electoral Observation Mission for Wednesday’s General Elections in The Bahamas has been assured that the Commission responsibly for the conduct of the poll is prepared, despite some concerns about the conduct of the advanced voting process.
The Mission, in an Arrival Statement, said acting Parliamentary Commissioner Mr. Charles Albury gave the assurance that despite the advanced voting concern and the fact that he only took up his acting position five (5) days prior to the scheduled date of the elections, he and his team of competent staff would ensure a smooth electoral process.
The CARICOM eleven member Mission, which began arriving in The Bahamas on 4 May, is headed by the Chief of Mission Ms. Josephine Tamai, the Chief Elections Officer of Belize, with Mr. Orette Fisher, Director of the Elections Commission of Jamaica as Deputy Chief of Mission. The other Members, who all have election management and observation experience, are nationals of Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Grenada, Guyana, Saint Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad and Tobago. They are supported by two staff members of the CARICOM Secretariat.
In addition to the acting Parliamentary Commissioner, the Mission has met the National Youth Council, the Commissioner of Police, the Democratic National Alliance (DNS) and the Bahamas Constitution Party (BCP). It plans to also meet with other political parties and stakeholders including the media and civil society groups in an effort to obtain an overview of the general atmosphere and level of preparedness for the elections.
The Mission will observe Election Day activities including the opening of the polls through to the tabulation and announcement of the results. Following the elections, it will issue a Preliminary Statement outlining its initial assessment of the process, followed by a Final Report which will be submitted to CARICOM Secretary-General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque.
Ministry of the Presidency, Georgetown, Guyana, May 3, 2017 – President David Granger, (on Wednesday), met with Chief Executive Officer of the Caribbean Development Fund (CDF), Mr. Rodinald Soomer, who lauded Guyana for its excellent track record in paying its contribution to the organisation as well as implementation of development projects. The meeting was held at State House.
The CDF is a 12-member body established under Article 158 of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas signed in January 2001. The Agreement Relating to the Operations of the Fund was signed in July 2008 and the CDF began operating in August 2009. Its objective is to assist its members to maximise the benefits arising from participation in the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME) by reducing intra-regional disparities through effective partnerships and the provision of financial and technical assistance. Its members include Guyana, Suriname, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad and Tobago.
Last year, Guyana signed its second financing agreement for a blended loan facility with the CDF valued at US$10,432,263.
Climate change remains inextricably linked to the challenges of disaster risk reduction (DRR). And according to the head of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), Robert Glasser, the reduction of greenhouse gases is “the single most urgent global disaster risk treatment”.
Glasser was addressing the Fifth Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) in the Americas. Held recently in Montreal, the gathering included more than 1,000 delegates from 50 countries, including the Caribbean.
“We recognise that reducing greenhouse gas emissions is arguably the single most urgent global disaster risk treatment, because without those efforts our other efforts to reduce many hazards and the risks those pose to communities would be overwhelmed over the longer term,” Glasser said.