Observing International Women’s Day 2018 at the CARICOM Secretariat


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The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat joined the world in observing International Women’s Day last Thursday. A Forum under the theme Gender Equality: A Pre requisite for Progress was organised by the Human and Social Development  (HSD) Directorate of the Secretariat and the Secretariat’s Staff Association at the Georgetown-based headquarters.

In remarks at the Forum, Mr. Timothy Odle, President of the Staff Association pointed out that 66% of the staff members at the Secretariat were highly skilled and trained women.

CARICOM Deputy Secretary-General, Ambassador Manorma Soeknandan PhD., in her remarks, focused on gender-based violence in the Region and impressed upon the gathering the need to examine their values and parenting skills.  (more…)

Caribbean Ministers see potential for increased cooperation, technology transfer with Argentina, Brazil

Eleven Caribbean Ministers and Deputy Ministers of Agriculture today participated in a working session in Buenos Aires to share experiences with members of the Agricultural Commission of the Argentine Senate, the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) said in a press release.

The visitors expressed an interest in strengthening ties with the South American country in order to acquire knowledge and innovation, primarily in the use of applied technology in agricultural production.

Officials from St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Guyana, Haiti, Suriname, Antigua and Barbuda, St. Kitts and Nevis, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Haiti and Saint Lucia, as well as high level representatives from CARICOM, the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and the Caribbean Research and Development Institute (CARDI) met in Argentina, as part of a mission led by Manuel Otero, IICA Director General. The mission also included the participation of Caio Rocha, Brazil’s National Secretary of Food and Nutritional Security.

IICA indicated that the schedule also included a meeting in the Senate with President of the Agricultural Commission, Alfredo De Ángeli, and a visit to the National Centre for Agricultural Research at the National Agricultural Technology Institute (INTA) to tour research facilities that specialise in Natural Resources, Climate and Water and Domestic Agriculture.  They were accompanied by INTA’s President, Juan Balbín, who made repeated reference to the institution’s activities and its interaction with the private and academic sectors.  Also on the agenda were meetings with the Minister of Agroindustry, Luis Miguel Etchevehere and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Daniel Riamondi.


CARICOM observer mission releases preliminary statement on Grenada elections





MARCH 13, 2018


At the invitation of the Government of Grenada the CARICOM Secretariat constituted an eleven-member team to observe Grenada’s Parliamentary Election held March 13, 2018.

The Mission was led by Ms. Pauline Welsh, Director of Legal Affairs, Research and Development at the Electoral Commission of Jamaica and comprised observers from The Bahamas, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.

The Secretary-General informed the group that its terms of reference would be:

 (i)      to observe the electoral process, including the preparations for the start of the poll, the casting of votes, the closure of polling stations, the counting of the ballots and the preparation of the Statement of Poll;

(ii)       collect information on the results at the voting tables to assist in the quantitative verification of the results;

(iii)     collect qualitative observations regarding the voting process, comportment of the electoral officials and political actors, and on the overall electoral environment. (more…)

Work to begin on new CARICOM strategic plan

By year end, the CARICOM Secretariat will be hard at work getting the framework in place for the new strategic plan for the Caribbean Community.

That’s the word from Craig Beresford, Director of Strategic Management with the CARICOM Secretariat. He was speaking yesterday morning during the start of a two-day workshop held at the Radisson Aquatica Resort, on the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) Monitoring Evaluation and Reporting Framework, as he reflected on the fact that the existing strategic plan for the Caribbean Community, which came into effect in 2015, is set to expire in 2019.

Given that reality, Beresford said that consultation will begin this year and run into the early part of 2019, after which they hope to start to formulate the strategy with the view of having a new plan by the end of 2019, “ripe and ready” for implementation by the time 2020 rolls in. He said this process of creating the plan should be easier than the last, as there is better communication among states, and there is a monitoring and evaluation system that will be able to better monitor objectives set and the steps taken to achieve them.

Speaking to the media following the opening, he noted that the plan will be influenced by a number of different issues that are happening around the world and indeed within the individual Member States within CARICOM. He made the point while noting that new policies from international countries, which are becoming more nationalistic in their focus, would also need to be looked at.

Read more at: Barbados Advocate


Systems must be in place to effectively monitor, evaluate integration journey – CARICOM official

IT is imperative that systems be put in place to more effectively monitor and evaluate the CARICOM integration journey.

So says Dr. Richard Brown, Director, CARICOM Single Market and Sectoral Programmes. He made the comments while delivering remarks at the start of a two-day workshop, which was held yesterday at the Radisson Aquatica Resort, on the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) Monitoring Evaluation and Reporting (MER) Framework.

Brown noted that as mandated by the Conference of Heads of Government, a comprehensive review of the CSME is currently under way, with focus being put on the achievements, outstanding matters, work-in-progress, bottlenecks, challenges and matters requiring resolution. Additionally, he said the intention is also to look at the basic framework of the CSME, including the right of establishment, the movement of services, goods and skills, and the supportive framework.

“The Secretariat continues to follow up with Member States regarding actions taken to implement the outstanding measures, in accordance with the Implementation Plan approved by the Conference in July of last year. In agreeing to the Implementation Plan, the Conference has considered a fairly comprehensive review of the legislative and administrative measures that countries have already developed or must now undertake to implement the CSME. The Conference, in their July 2017 Meeting, also discussed and received updates on the challenges that Member States face in implementing the CSME,” he said.

Read more at: Barbados Advocate