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The Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre in Barbados was a buzz of activity on Friday in preparation for the opening of the CARIFESTA XIII Grand Market which will be held on Saturday, August 19, 2017, at noon. Vendors and exhibitors were busy preparing their booths, mounting their displays and making general arrangements. Minister of Culture, Barbados Hon. Stephen Lashley was there to oversee the activities.
Our Communications Officer at CARIFESTA spoke to the Minister who said that all activities in the CARIFESTA XIII schedule are still on despite the disruption cause by Tropical Storm Harvey. He also encouraged persons to visit the Grand Market and Buyers Shopping Mall to witness various aspects of the Region’s culture on display.
Stay tuned to this space for the video interview with Minister Lashley who will provide more details on what to look forward to at CARIFESTA XIII, including the opening ceremony which will now be on on Sunday, August 20, 2017, starting at the Queen’s Park Oval and culminating at the Kensington Oval.
Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Ambassador Irwin LaRocque has urged Sweden to use its position in two major international organisations to highlight the unfair labelling of some of the Community’s Member States as “non-cooperative tax jurisdictions”.
Speaking at the CARICOM Secretariat’s Turkeyen, Guyana headquarters during the accreditation ceremony of Sweden’s news Ambassador to the Community, the Secretary-General said, “as we seek to diversify our economies and build our services sector, some of our Member States, engaged in financial services, have been labelled as “non-cooperative tax jurisdictions”. This is despite the fact that the countries in question are not so designated by the relevant global authorities, such as the Financial Action Task Force and the OECD Global Forum.”
“As a member of the EU and the OECD, Sweden can assist in encouraging these bodies to be guided by the informed position of the relevant global regulatory authorities and desist from their unnecessary seemingly punitive actions,” he added.
Speaking during the accreditation ceremony for the new Swedish Ambassador to the Community on Wednesday at the CARICOM Secretariat’s, Turkeyen, Guyana headquarters, CARICOM Secretary-General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque stated that GDP per capita should not be the principal measurement used in determining the development status of a country.
“We will continue to advocate for the use of a more accurate and realistic measure of development which considers vulnerability, including exposure to natural disasters and other exogenous shocks,” he said. “In the interest of realising our economic aspirations as a Community, we believe that a new paradigm in development finance needs to be considered,” he added.
Her Excellency Elisabeth Eklund presented her credentials to the Secretary-General who noted that her accreditation was a continuation of years of building bilateral relations with the Member States of the Community and a bi-regional dialogue between CARICOM and the countries of the Nordic region. Sweden is one of the countries in the Nordic Group with which CARICOM has a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Political Dialogue and Cooperation.