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Offices and Directorates

The Office of the Secretary-General comprises the following :

The Executive Office: provides direct support and advice to the Secretary-General, in achieving his priorities, through research and consultations internally with EMC Members and other staff; with Member States; with Institutions and other stakeholders.

The Internal Audit Unit : delivers independent and objective assurance and advisory  services to add value to and improve the operations of the Secretariat and other Community institutions as requested and agreed.

The Communications Unit: creates awareness of the Community and the Secretariat’s role, work and achievements, and seeks to positively shape perceptions, attitudes and behaviour towards the Community and its Secretariat.

The Change Management Office: A three year special project to assist the Secretary-General to,  inter alia,  drive the process of  restructuring the CARICOM Secretariat . This includes the preparation of a Business Plan for the organisation encompassing a close examination of, and agreement on, its core business guided by the  Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Srategic Plan. The restructuring of the Secretariat is intended to make it more fit for purpose, enabling it to fulfill its role as envisaged in the Strategic Plan.

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The Office of the Deputy Secretary-General  is responsible for the following:  

Administrative Services: establishes, maintains  and monitors systems to enhance the delivery of the Secretaiat’s programmes of work

 

Conference Services: is responsible for servicing the meetings of the Organs and Institutions of the Community.

 

Documentation Centre & Registry: fall administratively under the Corporate Services Programme. The Central Registry is responsible for the receipt, recording, routing and storage of both hard copy and electronic official mail received by the Secretariat while the Documentation Centre primarily provides information support to CARICOM Staff.

The Documentation Centre is also a repository for all documents emanating from meetings convened by the Secretariat.

See also: Regional ISBN Agency

 

Finance: is responsible for the financial operation and management of the Secretariat with respect to Member States’ and Donor Resources.

 

Human Resource Management: provides support to the management and general staff through the promotion of human resource development.

 

Integrated Information System: is responsible for providing IT service and support to the organization. The department coordinates and manages the IT resources including the network infrastructure and services, websites, software

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The Office of the General Counsel is responsible for providing legal advice to the Community. In addition to providing legal services to the CARICOM Secretariat (the Administrative Organ of the Community), the Office also advises the Organs, Bodies and Institutions of the Community. The work of the Office of the General Counsel supports the functions of the Secretariat, and the responsibilities of the Secretary-General set out in the Treaty, particularly in relation to advice on implementation of the Treaty and Community obligations, dispute settlement and treaty depositary functions. 

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The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat’s Office of Trade Negotiations is responsible for developing and maintaining a cohesive framework for coordinating and managing CARICOM’s external trade negotiations resources.The OTN’s mission is to help Member States maximize the benefits of participating in trade negotiations by: Providing sound advice,Facilitating the generation of regional positions,Coordinating the formulation of a cohesive negotiating strategy, Leading negotiations where appropriate

 

For information on Trade Issues click here

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A unified Community, competitive in the global arena; enabling resilience and improved quality of life, underlie the strategic objective of the Directorate for Foreign and Community Relations.

Coordination of foreign and external relations

Essential to the work of the Directorate is safeguarding and promoting the Community’s interests within the global environment[1]. This is done through the coordination of foreign and external relations evidenced, inter alia, by:

positioning CARICOM in the international environment; facilitating collaboration, cooperation and strategic alliances with Third States; and understanding and advocating  for the special needs of small open states, sensitive to external shocks of all sorts.

In this context, the Directorate provides support to the Council for Foreign and Community Relations (COFCOR); the Community Organ which determines the relations between the Community and international organizations and Third States. The COFCOR also promotes the development of friendly and mutually beneficial relations among Member States.

Specifically, the Directorate works to ensure effective coordination at the national level, that is, between Foreign and line ministries; and at the Community level, with Member States, the Secretariat and Community Institutions.

The Directorate’s work helps influence policy and informed decision

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Enhancing social resilience is an essential element of CARICOM’s thrust to build “A Community for All”.  To this end, sustained human and social development with reduced levels of poverty, equitable access and significant improvement of citizen security underlie the essence of the work of the Directorate of Human and Social Development of the CARICOM Secretariat.  To achieve the desired Community goals, the Directorate collaborates with a variety of stakeholders including Community Institutions, Civil Society, centres of higher education, regional and multilateral institutions and agencies to generate evidenced based information on which to provide sound policy guidance and the basis for advocacy by regional governments. In this regard, its programmes and activities are identified below.

 

Sustainable Development:

Sustainable Development Environment Human Development

Human Resource Development

Education Sport Development

Labour

Culture and Community Development

Culture Gender and Development Youth Development

Health Sector Development Crime and Security

 

CARICOM’s response to HIV and AIDS epidemic through the Pan Caribbean Partnership against HIV and AIDS (PANCAP) also falls within the ambit of this Directorate.

 

In carrying out its functions in pursuit of the Community’s goal, the Directorate:

 

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Sustainable economic development with improved quality of life for the Caribbean Community is the aim of CARICOM’s economic integration; largely conceived through a single economic space, the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME). Establishing and implementing the CSME is at the heart of the work of the Directorate of Trade and Economic Integration of the CARICOM Secretariat

 

To this end the Directorate has identified its goal as an effectively functioning and relevant CSME which positions the Community to achieve its objectives and to function beneficially and successfully in the global economy.  This goal is informed by the need for job creation; and market integration to facilitate production integration. It is also informed by the need for greater integration of the less developed countries to enable them to benefit from and to contribute to the Community; and for initiatives, in general, to impact  all of the people of the Community.

 

 It is expected that the CSME will, among other benefits  -

provide cheaper and better quality goods and services create greater opportunities for travel, work and study in other CARICOM countries provide access to larger markets enable the Community to have a greater voice in the international arena allow  for  fiscal, monetary and investment policies  to be coordinated and harmonised allow for

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The Forum of the Caribbean Group of African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) States (CARIFORUM) is the body that comprises Caribbean ACP States for the purpose of promoting and coordinating policy dialogue, cooperation and regional integration, mainly within the framework of the  Cotonou Agreement between the ACP and the European Union and also the CARIFORUM-European Community Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).

 

Membership 

There are sixteen (16) Participating States, namely: Antigua and Barbuda The Bahamas Barbados Belize Cuba Dominica Dominican Republic Grenada Guyana Haiti Jamaica Suriname Saint Lucia St. Christopher and Nevis St. Vincent and the Grenadines Suriname Trinidad and Tobago

All Participating States, with the exception of Cuba, are signatories to both the ACP/European Union Cotonou Agreement and the CARIFORUM-European Community Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA). In this regard, they benefit directly from regional resources under Caribbean Regional Indicative Programmes financed by the European Development Fund (EDF) and also belong to the preferential trade arrangement with the European Union.

 

The Group also allows observer status for other Caribbean territories. The following British and Dutch Overseas Territories and Countries (OCTs) have observer status in CARIFORUM:

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