Safe, adequate and affordable transportation for goods and people of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), as well as the benefits of links with the wider world are among the major objectives of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) transportation sector. Transportation has been identified in the Community Strategic Plan 2015-2019 as one of the sectors to build competitiveness and unleash key economic drivers to transition the regional economy to growth. In CARICOM the sector is divided into two broad areas: Maritime Transport and Air Transport, each with a number of priorities.
At the CARICOM Secretariat, the Transportation sub-programme working with the Regional Transportation Commission and other stakeholders continues to develop, articulate, implement and harmonise policies and programmes throughout the Community to develop the Air/Maritime Transport Infrastructure and Services. Several engagements with Airline Officials of Government-owned Air Carriers have identified tangible deliverables with respect to coordination/rationalization of their policies, operations and routes in the best interest of regional air transportation services.
Maritime Transport Priorities
The Priority areas with respect to the effective delivery of transportation are
- Development of a Regional Maritime Transport Policy
- Development of a Regional maritime strategy-freight logistics, maritime transport and trade facilitation
- Development of a common shipping policy for small vessel fleet and modernization of fleet
- Development and implementation of a cohesive regional maritime safety and security strategy for Regional small vessels
- Review of regulatory framework of the maritime sector – ratification and implementation of key international maritime instruments
- Establishment of a Regional regulatory maritime institution similar to that of CASSOS.
- Human capacity building for the sustainability of the sector
- Development of programmes to improve maritime transport services operations – passenger speed boats and yachts, intra-regional ferry service).
- Port infrastructure development which includes upgrades to facilitate ferries; cold storage operation; movement of Regional agriculture produce.
Priority areas with respect to the cost and sustainability of transportation –
- Promote strategic economic initiatives for Regional maritime sector (capitalizing on the benefits to be gained from the expansion of the Panama Canal
- Development of energy efficiency programme for sea port and vessel operations
- Contribution of maritime transport to environmental sustainability (addressing the cruise liners and yachts
- Establishment of fast-ferry services operation as an alternative mode of transportation
Air Transport Priorities
The Priority areas with respect to the effective delivery of transportation are:
- Completion of the Community Transportation Policy
- Review of economic regulation framework of the aviation industry
- Establishment of a single integrated airspace block in CARICOM.
- Strengthening Institutional reform and regulatory framework.
- Ratification and implementation of key international aviation policies and regulations.
- Establishment of a Regional a regional accident investigation body.
- Increased contribution of transport to environmental sustainability
- Review economic regulation framework of the aviation industry
Priority areas with respect to the cost and sustainability of transportation are as follows:
- Harmonisation/improvement of airport efficiency and operations (movement of agriculture goods/transiting of passengers through Regional airports).
- Human capacity building and institutional strengthening for the sustainability of the sector.
- Development of energy efficiency programme for airport operations
- Better coordination and collaboration among Government-owned Regional Airlines
- Enhancement of the efficiency of physical air transport infrastructure procedures and associate services
- Development of the Regional third tier aircraft sector and general aviation
Major Activities for 2016
A major activity in 2016 is the development of the framework for the effective delivery of air and maritime transportation. In this context, the Multilateral Air Services Agreement will be finalized and regional air and maritime transportation programmes developed, adopted and implemented.