Bridgetown, Barbados, June 4, 2013. Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) as chair for the CARIFORUM, French Caribbean Outermost Region (FCOR) and EU Overseas Countries and Territories (OCT) Task Force on Trade and Investment convened the 7th Meeting of the Task Force in Tortola, British Virgin Islands on May 30-31, 2013.
The mandate of the Task Force on Trade and Investment is to promote dialogue on issues related to trade and investment and to assist with the identification of projects between CARIFORUM States and the French Caribbean. This dialogue is important given the fact that the French Caribbean Regions through their political status with the French Republic is a party to the European Partnership Agreement (EPA).
Speaking at the opening of the meeting Caribbean Exports’ Executive Director Pamela Coke-Hamilton stressed that “It is also important to note that there are host of opportunities for enhanced trade and investment between CARIFORUM States, the French Caribbean and the OCTs. These opportunities range from the traditional trade in goods (where CARIFORUM enjoys trade surpluses) but also with regard to trade in services where all parties have significant opportunities to gain from enhanced private sector involvement.”
Dr. The Honourable D. Orlando Smith, OBE, Premier, British Virgin Islands echoed her sentiments and expressed that, “ Although BVI has only observer status in the organisation we are proud to be part of a forward moving process and congratulate the region for being able to move forward with the European Partnership Agreements (EPA) with the European Union (EU).”
The two day meeting allowed members of the task force to examine the key developments that have taken place in 2010-2012 as it relates to the CARIFORUM-EU relationship including an update on the CARIFORUM-EU Partnership Strategy, deliberations in the CARIFORUM-EU EPA Institutions and an update on EDF programming.
Pictured – From left, DR. THE HONOURABLE D. ORLANDO SMITH, OBE – Premier of the Virgin Islands, Government of the Virgin Islands, PAMELA COKE-HAMILTON, Executive Director, Caribbean Export, and HONOURABLE OLIVER JOSEPH, Deputy NAO – Ministry of Economic Development, Planning, Trade and Cooperatives – Grenada
Pictured at top from left, HONOURABLE OLIVER JOSEPH, Deputy NAO – Ministry of Economic Development, Planning, Trade and Cooperatives – Grenada and PAMELA COKE-HAMILTON, Executive Director, Caribbean Export