DECLARATION OF BARRANQUILLA II – CARICOM-Colombia Ministerial Summit

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The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Colombia and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), meeting in Barranquilla, the Golden Gate of Colombia, on January 28 of 2022, on the occasion of the II Colombia-CARICOM Ministerial Summit:

  1. Reiterate their interest and willingness to continue deepening the relationship between the Caribbean Community and the Republic of Colombia, and in this regard, recognize the Colombia-CARICOM Ministerial Summit as the optimal space for dialogue and the strengthening of political, economic, cultural, social and cooperation ties.
  2. Agree that regional cooperation is an important instrument to achieve sustainable and inclusive development in each of their States and commit to continue strengthening the regional integration and coordination mechanisms in which they share membership, renewing their support for the proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a zone of peace.
  3. Reiterate that the Colombia-CARICOM Ministerial Summit is a High-Level forum that through dialogue, recognizes an extraordinary role for culture in the political agenda of the CARICOM Member States and Colombia, thereby contributing to making cultural diversity visible and recognizable in the region and serves to enhance the potential for creative productivity.
  4. Reaffirm their commitment to continue building solidarity responses to face current challenges, such as those arising from the pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus, as well as future ones, including through encouraging open and constructive dialogue in the Greater Caribbean Region and in Latin America.
  5. Express their condolences to the families who have lost loved ones as a result of COVID-19. In this context, recognize the prevailing need to strengthen collaboration and deepen dialogue between our countries, to promote actions that contribute to reducing external dependence in terms of availability and access to health technologies to deal with COVID-19 and have a more coordinated response to future pandemics and global health threats. Similarly, call on the international community to continue promoting equity and solidarity in access to vaccines so as to prevent deaths from COVID-19 with the support of PAHO/WHO, COVAX and other competent organizations
  6. Express their profound gratitude to the Government of Colombia for the donation of one million dollars to the Pan American Health Organization to support vaccination programs in CARICOM member countries.
  7. Celebrate the Twenty-eighth Anniversary of the establishment of official relations between the Republic of Colombia and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), through the signing of Partial Scope Agreement No. 31 on trade and economic and technical cooperation, signed on July 24, 1994, within the framework of article 25 of the Latin American Integration Association (ALADI), in Cartagena de Indias.
  8. Agree that the Partial Scope Agreement No. 31 should be an instrument for economic and commercial reactivation and, consequently, reaffirm the importance of an active agenda, that allows  the current commercial Agreement to be adapted  to new  global  trends and incorporate new disciplines and products to encourage greater participation by companies in foreign trade, allowing for the comprehensive and further deepening of economic and commercial relations. In this regard, invite the Bahamas, Haiti and Suriname to explore their incorporation into the PSA.
  9. Highlight the interest of some countries in creating bilateral agreements with Colombia on trade and investment matters and, in line with the above, urge these countries to establish working groups to explore such bilateral trade approaches.
  10. Acknowledge the meeting held between the Caribbean Agency for Agricultural Health and Food Safety (CAHFSA) and the sanitary entities of Colombia, in which the procedures and contact points for future processes were shared. Agreed to promote this type of engagement to achieve sanitary admissibility of products of interest to each country.
  11. Agree to promote a joint cooperation agenda aimed at agricultural reactivation between Colombia and the Caribbean Community to generate greater competitiveness, based on knowledge management, innovation and technology transfer.
  12. Highlight the efforts made by the Export and Investment Promotion Agencies to boost trade, the exchange of experiences, information and commercial intelligence, which have allowed the promotion of trade and mutual investments in sectors of interest such as food, tourism, construction, services, among others. Called on these organizations to continue promoting the promotion of business and investment opportunities, aimed at maintaining and increasing the flow of trade, investment and tourism.
  13. Reaffirm their commitment to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development as a roadmap for a sustainable, green and resilient economic recovery, especially in the face of the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, and welcome the consensus reached by the Member States of the OAS to approve the Inter-American Business Charter during the 51st Period of Sessions of its General Assembly. Reiterate, in this regard, their willingness to work in accordance with the common principles established in this instrument, to promote and enhance the capacity of the business sector to contribute to sustainable development in the region.
  14. Recognize the importance of transitioning towards a circular economy that contributes to making the production and consumption chains more sustainable, and in this regard, commit to continue exploring and identifying coordination and cooperation mechanisms that contribute to the sharing of experiences and good practices for strengthening national capacities, as well as technology transfer and resource mobilization.
  15. Reaffirm their commitment to gender equality and the development of public policies aimed at generating employment, entrepreneurship and productive inclusion of women, in order to favor their economic empowerment, reduce gender gaps and continue advancing towards an inclusive recovery including in particular for women in rural communities.
  16. Underscore their willingness to collaborate to address common problems that threaten the security and stability of the region, such as the world drug problem, trafficking in small arms and light weapons, human trafficking, cybercrime, radical extremism, smuggling, money laundering and corruption. In this regard the Ministers recognized the importance of formulating practical solutions that include the formulation of action plans in these matters.
  17. Commend the approaches that are being carried out between the CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS), to strengthen the relationship with the authorities in Colombia, especially with the Colombian Navy, to work on instruments in terms of cooperation in safety.
  18. Acknowledge with appreciation the invitation extended by the Colombian Authorities for CARICOM member states to attend and participate in the next International Defense and Security Trade Fair – ExpoDefensa, with the aim of helping governments and armed forces to face their capacity challenges operations, as well as playing a key role in building a safer region.
  19. Congratulate the work carried out by the National Police of Colombia and its commitment to the Caribbean, through the design and implementation of activities aimed at strengthening collaboration networks and knowledge management between peer entities, evidencing the will and solidarity of the governments of their sister Caribbean countries to join the determined efforts of Colombia to put an end to transnational organized crime in all its forms, from a position of co-responsibility and coordinated joint work.
  20. Express their concern about climate change, the unprecedented loss of biodiversity and pollution, and recognized that, in light of the available scientific evidence, their adverse impacts on people and nature will continue to worsen with each additional increase in temperatures, soil degradation and the deterioration of the  environment  particularly given the high vulnerability of the Greater Caribbean region, in particular the Small Island Developing States (SIDS),  to the adverse effects of climate change. Therefore, underline the urgency to progressively increase ambition and action in relation to mitigation, adaptation to climate change and climate financing, in light of the principles, objectives and commitments agreed in the Paris Agreement, as well as the adoption of a new global framework for biodiversity post-2020 of the Convention on Biological Diversity that is ambitious and effective.
  21. Highlight the contributions and calls made by the Caribbean countries to act decisively to combat climate change, to preserve marine biodiversity, to promote the blue economy, and to have the financial and technical support it requires. Underscore the need for continued collaboration on the transition to sustainable renewable energy.
  22. Reaffirm their support and commitment for the development of a new global instrument to combat marine pollution by plastics, within the framework of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA 5.2), considering the serious impacts of plastic pollution in the Greater Caribbean region and the agreed goal of eliminating all plastic waste discharges in the Ocean by 2050. Consequently, they encourage all governments and relevant actors to join this call for a new instrument and to participate actively and constructively in the process within the framework of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee that is expected to be established.
  23. Agree on the importance of highlighting the cultural ties and common history shared by Colombia and the CARICOM countries and, in this context , welcome the exchange and cooperation initiatives on tangible and intangible cultural heritage, the Orange Economy and academics, student and sport exchanges, which redound to the benefit of the inhabitants of the Greater Caribbean.
  24. Celebrate the First Bilateral Meeting of Higher Education Institutions -IES- of the Colombian Caribbean and the Greater Caribbean, in which rectors and Directors of International Relations Offices of the region participated, in which they expressed their willingness to continue advancing the creation construction of a single Caribbean as a region of knowledge through academic and research work that promotes exchange, mobility and the implementation of programs.
  25. Recognize the importance of sport as a tool to promote talent and provide opportunities for youth, for which they expressed their interest in cooperating on sports policy and welcomed the launch of the regional international cooperation project Paralympic sport: Latin Americans and Caribbean together for inclusion, on September 2, 2021, with the support inter alia of the Inter-American Development Bank and APC – Colombia and the National Paralympic Committees of Colombia and Trinidad and Tobago, to promote more inclusive societies.
  26. Acknowledge the countries of CARICOM, Aruba and Curaçao for their participation in the activities carried out in the six (6) projects of the 2020-2022 Cooperation Program approved within the framework of the First Joint Commission for Technical, Cultural, and Educational Cooperation of November 26, 2020, held in compliance with paragraph 23 of the Cartagena Declaration and urge continued collaboration on these projects. The Ministers commit to convene the II Colombia-CARICOM Joint Commission, in order to follow up on the cooperation issues raised during 2021.
  27. Celebrate the Knowledge Fair for the Exchange of Successful Experiences, held on January 26 and 27, 2022, expressing its commitment to carry out at least two (2) robust, strategic projects with high added value, for each of the security and defense, climate change, inclusion and equity, and rural development and innovation sectors. for the benefit of the citizens of the region.
  28. Commit to convening the next Colombia-CARICOM Ministerial Summit, in a maximum of two years, in order to review and examine the implementation of the agreements adopted during their meetings and continue with a high-level dialogue on cooperation.
  29. The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Caribbean Community express their gratitude to the Vice President of the Republic and Ministry of Foreign Affairs for convening and hosting the Ministerial Summit, and express their appreciation to President Iván Duque for his participation and to the Government and people of Colombia for their hospitality.
  30. Adopt the present Declaration, in two original texts in Spanish and English, on January 28, 2022.

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