Tourism and the movement of goods were identified as the keys to development during the next stage, according to the last meeting of the CARICOM representatives.
At the annual meeting held in Georgetown, Guyana, CARICOM countries established (link in Spanish) that a system will be implemented to guarantee responsibility for the CARICOM integration process and to measure the impact of this.
The areas to be evaluated include legal and institutional measures and support mechanisms for the free flow of goods, services, and capacities and establishing companies in other member countries. The heads of government agreed on the priority areas that need to be tackled, including the challenge of paying for goods and services that are traded within the region and a protocol on procedures for facilitating travel.
They also highlighted the importance of transportation for the movement of CARICOM citizens and requested further discussion on this issue from the perspective of integration.
Those present stressed that tourism is a vital sector for member states’ economies and they welcomed proposals from the Caribbean Tourism Association (CTO) and the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) to move toward a regional tourism agenda, particularly through the sector’s public–private associations.
They also discuss the future of the African, Caribbean, and Pacific Group of States (ACP), including the renewal of the Cotonou Agreement, which governs relations between the ACP and the European Union and which expires in 2020.
The presidency of the conference rotates every six months: the prime minister of Grenada will take over for the next six-month period as of July 1, 2017. The 38th meeting of the conference will take place in Grenada between July 4 and 6, 2017.