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The Original Treaty

​The Treaty of Chaguaramas which established the Caribbean Community, including the Caribbean Common Market was signed by Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago on 4 July 1973, at Chaguaramas, Trinidad and Tobago. It came into effect on 1 August 1973.

The Caribbean Community and the Caribbean Common Market replaced the Caribbean Free Trade Association which ceased to exist on 1 May 1974.

The Treaty of Chaguaramas was a juridical hybrid consisting of the Caribbean Community as a separate legal entity from the Common Market which had its own discrete legal personality.

The legal separation of these two institutions was emphasised by the elaboration of two discrete legal instruments: the Treaty establishing the Caribbean Community and the Agreement establishing the Common Market (which was later annexed to the Treaty and designated the Common Market Annex). This institutional arrangement facilitated States joining the Community without being parties to the Common Market regime.

In addition to economic issues, the Community instrument addressed issues of foreign policy coordination and functional cooperation. Issues of economic integration, particularly those related to trade arrangements, were addressed in the Common Market Annex.

Because of this juridically separate identity of the regional common market, it was possible for The Bahamas to become a member of the Community in 1983 without joining the Common Market.

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