The 46th Meeting of the CARICOM’s Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) was held in Georgetown, Guyana, May 16-17. Due to the many ongoing international and domestic issues the Council tried to find “appropriate mix of methodologies and strategies” to focus on its expanding agenda.
The Hon. Chet Greene, Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Immigration of Antigua and Barbuda, who chaired the Meeting, in opening remarks at the session, stated that there are currently several trade issues that are influencing the Community’s headway to sustained economic growth. He referred to the impasse between the USA and China, and the importance of “the future trading and other relations with the United Kingdom and the EU.
Minister said that region’s status related to the implementation of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) could be better, and that it is Council’s responsibility to “promote the development and oversee the operations of the CSME”. In addition, the review of the Common External Tariff (CET) is considered as important response to CARICOM’s promptly changing trading environment.
Ministers with responsibility for trade also discussed the importation of fake goods from various countries, reports of Turkish imports into the region and the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).