Regional patriotism, CSME in focus at end-of-summit press conference

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The CARICOM Conference of Heads of Government recently concluded their Inter-Sessional meeting, which was was held  on February 16 -17, 2017 in Georgetown, Guyana. The meeting ended with a press briefing at the Marriott Hotel, which was addressed by Chairman of the Conference, His Excellency David Granger, President of Guyana, Prime Minister of Grenada, Dr. the Hon. Keith Mitchell who will be the next Chairman, as well as CARICOM Secretary General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque. Some of the topics addressed included  the CSME, Correspondent Banking, CARICOM-US Relations, Regional Security, Tourism, and CARIFESTA, which will be held in Barbados this August.  More in this video report:

 

Stirring opening to CARICOM Inter-Sessional – Video highlights

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The Twenty-Eighth Inter-Sessional Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) opened Thursday morning at the Marriott Hotel, Georgetown, Guyana.

Speakers at the Opening included CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque,  Prime Minister of Dominica, Hon. Roosevelt Skerrit, and CARICOM Chairman and President of Guyana, HE David Granger.

More in this video report:

CARICOM SG calls for collective response for regional challenges

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CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque
COHESIVE RESPONSE NEEDED: CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque

As the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Heads of Government continue to pursue the course for sustained economic development, CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, said that working collectively and pooling resources were key to success.

Speaking at the opening of the Twenty-Eighth Intersessional Meeting of the Conference of CARICOM Heads of Government, Mr. LaRocque said that a cohesive response was needed to address the three broad areas the Conference will focus on – economic development, crime and security and international relations.

The Intersessional summit opened at the Marriott Hotel, in Georgetown Guyana, earlier this morning, Thursday 16 February, 2016, under the Chairmanship of President of Guyana, His Excellency David Granger.

Crime and security, prioritised on the agenda, are national and regional issues, the Secretary-General said, underscoring the need for more efficiency in systems concerned with finalising “critical legal instruments” to respond to security issues.

Delegates at the opening ceremony
Delegates at the opening ceremony

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‘Take stock of the positive’ – CARICOM SG on integration movement

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CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque addresses the media
TAKE STOCK OF THE POSITIVE: CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, addresses the media

In any assessment of the performance of the regional integration movement, the positive elements must be considered. And integration must never be measured solely on trade as there was much more that was happening in other spheres such as in functional cooperation and in crime and security, Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque said Monday at the CARICOM Secretariat.

He was at the time responding to questions at a press conference that preceded the Twenty-Eighth Intersessional Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of CARICOM which will be held Thursday and Friday at the Marriott Hotel, Georgetown, Guyana, under the Chairmanship of His Excellency David Granger, President of Guyana.

The Secretary-General said that integration was working even though there was always room for improvement.

“Can you imagine if there were no CARICOM? Things that we take for granted in our everyday lives… like CXC… that’s CARICOM at work. The fact that more than ninety-nine per cent of our goods is traded freely within our Region – that’s CARICOM at work. The fact that we can have a concerted effort at talking about correspondent banking,…can you imagine if Guyana went alone or Saint Lucia went alone to talk …about correspondent banking? The fact that we have been able to successfully addressing the issue HIV/AIDS collectively; the fact that we have become the first region in the world to eliminate measles and the fact that we have a Community response at the time of disaster… The fact that we are able to present our concerns on climate change collectively.

“There always is room for improvement… By and large, I am satisfied. There are some frustrations that we hear of and we experience in terms of the pace. But as one Prime Minister always says:  we are not going to a point; we are on a journey. Development, as is integration is a journey and once your journey is going in the right direction and you are always improving on what you have and building a sense of Community which I think we really do have, I think we are on the right track; we are going in the right direction. We are carrying everybody with us; no one is being left behind We are building a sense of community and carrying everyone with us. Despite what you may hear … (integration) is working,” the Secretary-General said.

CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque flanked by Assistant Secretary-General, Foreign and Community Relations, Ambassador Colin Granderson,  (left) and Assistant Secretary-General, Trade and Economic Integration, Mr. Joseph Cox
CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque (cewntre) flanked by Assistant Secretary-General, Foreign and Community Relations, Ambassador Colin Granderson, (left) and Assistant Secretary-General, Trade and Economic Integration, Mr. Joseph Cox

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