Put your money where your mouth is! – Barbados Culture Minister

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Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth of Barbados, the Hon. Stephen Lashley, is of the view that regional Governments needed to redirect some of their resources to the cultural industries if they were truly interested in regional economic expansion and development.

He said funding that was going to some traditional sectors that may not necessarily be bringing in the returns that were needed could be diverted to the cultural industries. The Minister was speaking at the opening ceremony of the Twenty-Fifth meeting of the Regional Cultural Committee at the CARICOM Secretariat in Georgetown, Guyana, 21-23 July, 2017.

In his remarks, Minister Lashley pointed out that when the CARICOM Heads of Government met at the Twenty-Sixth Inter-Sessional Meeting in The Bahamas in February, 2015, they recognised that cultural and creative industries represented a sector with great potential to contribute to the economic development of the Region. According to the Minister, the Heads reaffirmed the significance of the cultural and creative industries to CARICOM integration, to the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME), for cultural identity, diversity and youth engagement. He said they also agreed to place greater emphasis on a development pathway based on knowledge and the creative economy and by leveraging the human, cultural and national assets of the Community, for development in all its dimensions. (more…)

CARICOM border officials commend CSME training

CARICOM Border officials with CARICOM Secretariat Members of Staff
CARICOM Border officials with CARICOM Secretariat Members of Staff

Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Immigration and Customs Officers took the opportunity this week to discuss CARICOM Single Market and Economy processes at a training workshop. The two-day session in Barbados sought to ensure there was common understanding of the Free Movement of Persons regime. Participants were also involved in training in Customer Service and the Right of Establishment and Provision of Services.

There was representation from all Member States who are significantly participating in the CSME and some officials were engaged on-line. The training took place at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Conference Centre with support from the 10th European Development Fund and ended yesterday 14 June 2017.

In the wrap-up comments, participants commended the timeliness of the activity and the information received. They also highlighted networking and sharing experiences as a useful tool for implementation of obligations within the CSME.

Participants committed to ensuring follow-up activities are implemented within their home state as they engage peers via the development and execution of training. This is expected to assist with maintaining and reinforcing capacity within Member States.

 

CARICOM Immigration, Customs Officers to receive training on CSME

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CARICOM Immigration and Customs Officers will undergo training next week to clarify the roles and functions of Border Officers. The training is also geared at ensuring that there is a common understanding of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) in general, and the Free Movement of Persons (FMP) in particular.

The Train-the-Trainers Workshop for Immigration and Customs Officers is being held by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat 13- 14 June, in Barbados. It is part of the Tenth European Development Fund CSME Economic Integration Programme.

The Workshop will also include a module on Customer Service and on Effective Communication.

In addition to further strengthening and building the capacity of these officials on the CARICOM Free Movement regimes, it is expected that this intervention will enhance their ability to train their peers upon their return home. In light of this and the follow-up that is required to make this intervention successful and sustain the efforts, there will be a need to ensure that further training activities take place at the National Level.

Ministers green-light Single ICT Space Integrated Work Plan

Special COTED ICT 19 May 2017 from Caribbean Community on Vimeo.

“The work on the Single ICT space forces us to collaborate like never before as Ministers, policy-makers, officials and civil society, if we are going to succeed and advance as a Region.” Chair of COTED ICT, the Hon. Ferdinand Welzijn
Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Ministers with responsibility for Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) on Friday, 19 May, 2017, approved the Integrated Work Plan for the Community’s Single ICT Space.

The approval came during discussions at the Sixty-Eighth Special Meeting of the Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) on ICT. The Virtual Meeting was anchored at the CARICOM Secretariat in Georgetown, Guyana.

The Single ICT Space is conceptualised as the digital layer of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME), the Region’s flagship programme. It encompasses the management of Regional information, human resources, legislation and infrastructure in the sector to elicit maximum benefit for the Region’s populace.

The Single ICT space and the Region’s Digital Agenda 2025 are premised on the Regional Digital Development Strategy (RDDS) which was approved in 2013, and will also have inputs from key regional Commissions and the Post-2015 Agenda.

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COTED urged to reassess orientation of external trade

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A review of the Caribbean Community’s (CARICOM) external trade relations, strengthened capacity, and Member States’ strong support of each other will ensure that the Region is in a better position to confront the challenges it faces.

This is the view of Suriname Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, the Hon. Ferdinand Welzijn, Chairman of the Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) now underway at the Pegasus Hotel in Georgetown, Guyana.

In remarks at the opening of the two-day Meeting Thursday morning, the Minister alluded to global development challenges, including the consequences anticipated from the withdrawal of Great Britain from the European Union (EU).

“For us to be better equipped and face all these challenges we must first work on strengthening the capacities of our communities and strongly support each other, to achieve economic growth and welfare for all of us in the Region”, Minister Welzijn said.

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