Caricom/UK security plan, World Cup on Caricom Heads agenda
Stabroek News
July 2, 2004

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Caricom heads are to discuss proposals for a Caribbean/ United Kingdom Security Cooperation Plan and preparations for Cricket World Cup (CWC) 2007 when they meet in Grenada on July 4.

They will also examine a proposal to change the format of the Caribbean Festival of Creative Arts (Carifesta) and hold discussions on the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME) and the Caribbean Court of Justice, along with the top agenda items which are talks on the looming restructuring of the EU Sugar Protocol and a review of the situation in Haiti. Prime Minister of Barbados Owen Arthur is to lead the discussions on the CSME.

Caricom Secretary-General Edwin Carrington told the media at a press briefing on Monday, that the discussions on CSME - the flagship of Caricom - will include talks on an approach to the media, seeking assistance in educating the public about CSME.

Carrington said that in addition to the standard agenda, items dealing with the border issue of Bird Rock off the coast of Dominica - which Venezuela is claiming - will be added to the border discussions involving Guyana and Venezuela and Belize and Guatemala.

Carrington said the proposals for the Caribbean/UK Security Cooperation plan was one of the issues that emerged out of the Caribbean UK Forum held in the UK in May. Security, he said, is now a major issue and one can hardly attend a meeting without it being discussed.

He said the Prime Ministerial Sub-committee on Cricket is going to put forward the proposals on preparations for CWC 2007 and discussions will be held on the allocation of matches and the sharing of the proceeds, which result from them.

On changing the format for Carifesta, he noted that many participants who have been taking part in the cultural fiesta feel that it needs to be placed on a better footing. He said that since Carifesta was first held in 1972, it has been held in a topsy-turvy way. Once it took place twice in T&T over a two-year period, then it did not take place for 11 years.

Carrington said there are also going to be some discussions on the Caribbean Agricultural Development Institute (CARDI) and President Bharrat Jagdeo, who has lead responsibility for agriculture in the region, is down to present an item on strengthening agriculture for sustainable development.

On the agenda for discussions, too, is the development of a common community fisheries' regime. Fisheries, he said, is a sensitive issue in the region.

In terms of institutional development of the community, Carrington noted that based on the options for governance, there will be another commission established on how to improve the assembly of Caribbean parliamentarians from what people say is "a talk shop" to "a work shop."

Heads will also exchange views and consultations with special invited guests.