Harmonised procedures necessary for full economic integration – CARICOM Assistant Secretary-General tells customs officials

Harmonised approaches to conducting trade across borders in the Caribbean, and effective customs valuation, are among the steps that must be taken towards full economic integration within the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

CARICOM Assistant Secretary-General, Trade and Economic Integration, Mr. Joseph Cox, said on Monday that harmonised laws, procedures and best practices would increase the predictability with intra-regional movement of goods under the CARICOM Single Market and within the context of the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).

He was at the time addressing the opening ceremony of a three-day regional workshop targetting Customs officials from across Caribbean Forum of African Caribbean and Pacific States (CARIFORUM) member states. The workshop on the Single Administrative Document (SAD) and Customs Valuation, is aimed at building capacity in CARIFORUM. The sessions are being held at the CARICOM Secretariat in Georgetown, Guyana.

The Workshop is being facilitated by Mr. Paul Hilaire, Team Leader, and Mr. Martin Wilde, Customs expert and is part of a Project under the ACP TradeCom II Programme funded by the European Union. It has as one of its outcomes, the development of a regional SAD pursuant to Chapter 4 of the EPA, and capacity-building, which requires the promotion of regional integration, and the progressive development of systems to facilitate the electronic exchange of data among traders, customs administrators and related agencies and the implementation of a CARIFORUM SAD.

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CARIFORUM Customs officials begin three-day workshop in Georgetown

A Regional Workshop aimed at building capacity in the Caribbean Forum of African Caribbean and Pacific States (CARIFORUM), began this morning at the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat in Georgetown, Guyana.

The Regional Workshop on the Single Administrative Document (SAD) and Customs Valuation brings together stakeholders from CARIFORUM States’ Customs Administrations.

It is being facilitated by Mr. Paul Hilaire, Team Leader, and Mr. Martin Wilde, Customs expert. The workshop, which is part of a Project under the ACP TradeCom II Programme funded by the European Union, has as its outcomes the development of a regional SAD as per Chapter 4 of the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement, and capacity-building in customs valuations in CARIFORUM States. The Workshop will consider the proposed regional SAD and how it will be implemented, as well as provide training in customs valuation.

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Successor Cotonou Agreement must take into account Region’s vulnerabilities – CARIFORUM Council of Ministers

The successor to Cotonou Partnership Agreement between the African Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) States and the European Union must take into account the inherent and exogenous vulnerabilities of the Caribbean Forum of the ACP States (CARIFORUM) as critical elements in the negotiations.

A Statement of the CARIFORUM Council of Ministers said that successor agreement also had to the take into account the development priorities of the ACP, including CARIFORUM’s priorities, and must aim at sustainable, inclusive and resilient development of the ACP regions.

The Council of Ministers met in St. Kitts and Nevis, 26-27 March, 2018.

At the opening ceremony, CARIFORUM Director General, Mr. Percival Marie, said that the meeting was timely and extremely vital. (more…)

 

CARIFORUM stakeholders acknowledged for continuous preparation for fallout post-BREXIT

Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): The Honourable Mark Brantley, Premier of Nevis and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Aviation in the Federal Government, applauded various key persons from CARIFORUM Member States for their continuous work in preparation for the fallout after the United Kingdom’s (UK) withdrawal from the European Union (EU) also known as ‘Brexit’. 

Speaking at the Special Meeting of the CARIFORUM Council of Ministers on Monday, March 26, at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort, Minister Brantley acknowledged and thanked representatives from Member States who were based in the UK and in Brussels, noting that much of the diplomatic activity took places in those areas, especially at such a crucial time. 

“Your work at both the technical and consultative level has helped to clarify much of the issues which emerged since the decision by the United Kingdom to leave the European Union close to two years ago, and informs the shape and contours of our future engagement,” stated Minister Brantley, while expressing thanks and appreciation to the hardworking staff at the CARIFORUM Directorate and the Office for Trade Negotiations at the CARICOM Secretariat in Guyana. (more…)

CARIFORUM Council of Ministers Meeting underway in St. Kitts and Nevis

The United Kingdom’s (UK) withdrawal from the European Union (EU), also known as ‘Brexit’, is an emerging trade issue that is of paramount concern to the Caribbean Region. Against this backdrop, a number of government ministers and delegates from the Caribbean Forum of African Caribbean and Pacific States (CARIFORUM) countries are currently in St. Kitts-Nevis attending a two-day Special Meeting of the CARIFORUM Council of Ministers. The meeting at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort concludes on 27 March.

CARIFORUM Director General, Percival Marie, said that the meeting was timely and extremely vital.

“The meeting is held at a crucial time when post Cotonou negotiations between the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group of States and the European Union are about to commence. This meeting is also held when the European Union and the United Kingdom are in discussions on the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union,” said the Director General. “We are also in discussion with the United Kingdom in a rollover agreement between the Caribbean region and the United Kingdom to ensure that there is a smooth transition without any loss of trading opportunities between the Caribbean and the United Kingdom when the United Kingdom would have left the European Union.”

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