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CARICOM HEADS FAST TRACK FULL IMPLEMENTATION OF CSME

Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) signed four Instruments at their Thirteenth Inter-Sessional Meeting in Belize City, Belize to fast track the full implementation of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).  The Instruments signed were: Protocol on the Provisional Application of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas, Agreement Establishing the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism, Agreement Establishing the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre, Agreement Establishing the CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality (CROSQ).

Of the Instruments that were signed by the Heads of Government, those in relation to the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas and CROSQ speak directly to the implementation of the CSME. The Protocol for the Provisional Application of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas provides Member States of the Community with the legal framework to apply the Treaty in a limited way. The Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas, which provides the legal framework for the Community to move from a Common Market to a Single Market and Economy, was signed by most Heads of Government when they met for their regular Meeting in July 2001 in The Bahamas.

The signing of the Agreement establishing CROSQ is a giant step towards the further implementation of the CSME as the organisation's operation will be important to the Community in four significant ways. It will represent the Community in hemispheric and world standards bodies where individual Member States presently represent themselves; it will put into operation Community programme of standardisation with respect to the adoption of world standards and setting and promoting regional standards; it will be the organisation to represent the Community in disputes between the Community and third countries as well as mediate in disputes taking place intra-regionally and it will be the regional umbrella body for national standards organisations.

The CROSQ is regarded as an organisation that is indispensable for the internal development and positioning of the Community to effectively defend home markets, promote sales and compete effectively on the global market. The organisation will be headquartered in Barbados.

The Agreements Establishing the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism and Agreement Establishing the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre provide the legal framework for the operation of both organisations.

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