More opportunities provided for private sector as CARICOM, Cuba expand duty-free market access

 

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The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and Cuba on Thursday signed the Second Protocol to an Agreement that will expand access to each other’s markets for goods.

CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, and Cuban Ambassador to CARICOM, His Excellency Julio Cesar Gonzalez Marchante, signed the Second Protocol to the Trade and Economic Cooperation Agreement between CARICOM and Cuba during the opening of the 45th Meeting of the Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) in Georgetown, Guyana.

Under the Second Protocol, Cuba will expand duty free access to more than 320 items including meat, fish, dairy products, fruits, vegetables, beer, rum, cement, soap and apparel. CARICOM will grant duty free access to some 50 items, including fish, pharmaceutical products, fertilisers and articles of iron and steel. The Community will also offer differentiated treatment on 22 items. The differentiated treatment includes phased reduction of duty by Most Developed Countries in CARICOM.

The CARICOM Secretary-General said that signing the Second Protocol marked a further deepening of the trade and economic relations between CARICOM and Cuba and provided further opportunities for the Region’s private sector.

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Guyana gets update on Regional Training Centre

Minister Nicolette Henry is flanked by Cuban Ambassador to Guyana, H.E. Julio Cesar Gonzalez Marchante (right) and Professor Jorge Ramirez
Minister Nicolette Henry is flanked by Cuban Ambassador to Guyana, H.E. Julio Cesar Gonzalez Marchante (right) and Professor Jorge Ramirez

Minister within The Ministry of Education, Hon. Nicolette Henry was brought up to speed on the cooperation and technical assistance Agreement between CARICOM, the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Cuba and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the establishment of the Regional Training Centre. This project is aimed at stimulating the development of children, adolescents and young people with special educational needs associated with disabilities.

The appraisal was done during a courtesy call from the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Julio Cesar Gonzalez Marchante and Professor Jorge Duvalon Ramirez on Monday January 16, the Minister announced on her Facebook page.

The Agreement for this initiative was signed in December 2016 by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Carl B. Greenidge, Ambassador Julio Cesar Gonzalez Marchante and CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque.

The proposal to finance this project was made by the Government of Cuba at the V CARICOM-Cuba Summit in 2014. (more…)