2017 In Photos

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As 2017 ends and we usher in 2018, we take a look back at a challenging year, but one in which CARICOM showed its formidable strength and resilience.

Here are some highlights:


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CARICOM records noteworthy successes in 2017 despite challenges

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Secretary-General at the CARICOM-UN High Level Conference with the UN SG Antonio Guterres and Head of UNDP Achim Steiner
CARICOM Secretary-General Amb. Irwin LaRocque (l) at the CARICOM-UN High Level Conference with the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres (r) and Head of UNDP Achim Steiner

(CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana) The more than US$2B pledged at the CARICOM-UN Conference for long-term recovery for hurricane-affected countries and the establishment of the regional renewable energy center are among the successes CARICOM recorded for 2017 in spite of the year’s challenges.

Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretary-General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque said in his End of Year Message that the Community was ending 2017 with several other noteworthy achievements, including a change in posture by International Financial Institutions and some Development Partners with respect to access to concessionary development financing.

“It is encouraging to note that our relentless advocacy with respect to the lack of access to concessional development financing appears to be bearing fruit. There is some re-thinking on this issue taking place at the level of the International Financial Institutions (IFIs) and some of our international development partners (IDPs),” the Secretary-General stated.

Adding that CARICOM will continue to advocate for this change he said the Region’s vulnerability to external shocks, which the hurricanes laid bare, emphasised the urgent need for the international community to dispense with GDP per capita as a primary criterion for access to concessional development financing. (more…)

A year that will have a lasting impact – CARICOM Secretary-General

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End of Year Message

by the Secretary-General

of the

Caribbean Community (CARICOM)

Ambassador Irwin LaRocque


There is no doubt that the events of 2017 will have a lasting impact on our Community.  The ravaging effects of this year’s hurricane season will cast a long shadow over our Community for some time yet.

Six of our Members and several of our Caribbean neighbours experienced the wrath of unprecedented back-to-back Category 5 Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

The heavy toll of lives, property and infrastructure had an effect wider than the affected countries.  Our Community has bonded together, as its governments, people and institutions render yeoman support to the stricken countries.  The international community has been at our side in the relief undertaking in a highly appreciated show of solidarity.

The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency, (CDEMA) the Community’s specialised institution, performed magnificently as it coordinated the relief efforts and helped to set the stage for recovery.  I must extend the Region’s gratitude to the Agency for a job well done.  The Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) was also prompt in meeting its commitments to the affected countries with the appropriate policies.

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Barbados has big impact on the world – CARICOM SG


(CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana)     Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Ambassador Irwin LaRocque has lauded Barbados  as it celebrates its 51st Independence Anniversary on 30 November, 2017, describing it as “a small state which has made a big impact on the world”.

In a message to the Prime Minister of Barbados, the Rt Hon. Freundel Stuart, the Secretary-General said that regional integration has benefitted from the unwavering, valuable involvement of the Government and people of Barbados, as evidenced by its commitment and guidance to the completion of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).

“The outstanding leadership displayed most recently in the successful hosting of CARIFESTA XIII in August 2017, despite having to brace for the passage of Tropical Storm Harvey, was one of the countless occasions when Barbados demonstrated its profound sense of community and its deep commitment to the Community,” Secretary-General LaRocque stated.  (more…)

Caribbean Fashion Designers meet with Italian Fashion Industry Experts at CARIFESTA XIII in Barbados

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Fashion designers participating in the Fashion component at the recently held CARIFESTA XIII in Barbados had an opportunity to meet with Italian fashion industry experts and benefit from fashion workshops, fashion shows and business meetings.Cxii_cc_logo

The event, which took place in the CARIFESTA XIII Buyers Shopping Mall at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Conference Centre from 21-25 August 2017, was facilitated by the CARICOM Secretariat with support from the Government of Italy.cxii_carifesta_logo

The CARICOM – Italy project, valued at US$45,600, brought Caribbean fashion designers and manufacturers and Italian fashion industry experts together to forge new avenues for cooperation and partnership and provide opportunities for the professional development of Caribbean fashion designers and manufacturers.

The focus was on expanding opportunities for training, technological exchange and participation in international fashion shows and events in Italy. The project brought three Italian fashion industry experts to CARIFESTA XIII and provided financial support to ten Caribbean fashion designers in the areas of apparel, jewellery, hats and other accessories.cxii_logocxii_cna_logo

Project staff of the CARICOM Secretariat collaborated closely with the Host Country Fashion Team at CARIFESTA XIII in organising the exhibition, fashion shows, workshops/presentations and business meetings.

On 21 and 22 August, the Italian experts gave presentations focused on “The Fashion System in the International Competition – The Italian Experience – The added value of the supply chain” by Antonio Franceschini, Secretary General CNA Federmoda, an Italian Association of 25,000 small and medium enterprises, with more than 1,000 offices throughout the country.   Roberto Corbelli, Italian fashion industry expert and producer of fashion events, presented on various fashion trends and scenarios. Daniela Cattaneo, pattern designer delivered a presentation on 24 August entitled “Pattern Making 2.0” and a subsequent workshop was held on 25 August on Pattern Making. (more…)