CARICOM Governments to increase quality information on the Single Market to CARICOM nationals

(CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana) CARICOM nationals in six Members States are to benefit from a greater flow of tailored information on the CARICOM Single Market (CSM). This is under a new project that aims to connect nationals with the information they need to work, travel and do business in participating CARICOM countries.

Over the next five months, the groundwork for greater information flows and channels on the CSM is being established through technical assistance to governments and training key stakeholders. In partnership with focal point ministries for the Single Market in Belize, Jamaica, Guyana, Dominica, Grenada and St Vincent and the Grenadines, the project will build governments’ and stakeholders’ capacity to develop and sustain well packaged information on the single market to their nationals. This is expected to take place during and beyond the life of the project.

The project, which took effect in October, falls under Component 300 of the CARICOM Trade and Competitiveness Project (CTCP). Funded by the Government of Canada, the project’s objective is to widen the scope of participation by stakeholders and beneficiaries in the process of decision-making, implementation and operation of the CSM.
A robust information and communication infrastructure , which includes up-to-the-minute intra-agency information sharing along with sustainable and accessible public information channels are vital if the intended benefits of the Single Market are to be understood and utilised by the average CARICOM national. This project aims to set this foundation in place.

Among the immediate benefits to the focal Member States are capacity-building through the development of national communication strategies and awareness plans in the case of Dominica, Grenada, Belize and Guyana. Additionally, in all six Member States, there will be CARICOM Single Market workplace sessions within agencies responsible for facilitating access to the five CSM Regimes namely Free movement of skills, goods, services, people and right of establishment (of business).

Each Member State will also benefit from training of Spokespersons, Media and Teachers. Spokespersons training will equip select persons to effectively communicate their knowledge of the Single Market, including how and where to access information, and how to seek redress if rights are challenged. The media training aims to narrow knowledge gaps on the Single Market and to improve participants’ ability to initiate and mediate discourse on the Single Market. Educators’ training at the CXC and CCLC levels will seek to infuse information on the CSM Regimes into school curricula, ultimately sparking greater interest in regional integration among young people. This is also meant to encourage their steady pursuit of the opportunities accessible through the referenced five CSM Regimes.

A Saint Lucia-based company, Right Angle Imaging, was contracted to work with the beneficiary Member States to implement the Consultancy. The Project is expected to conclude around mid-March 2015.
The Community Strategic Plan (2015-2019) identifies, among other areas for priority focus , the accelerated implementation of the CSME, building competitiveness and unleashing key economic drivers to transition to growth and to generate employment and the development of human capital.

About the CTCP
Established in 2008, the CARICOM Trade and Competitiveness Project (CTCP) is mandated to provide more and better opportunities for the people of the CARICOM region to participate in and benefit from the introduction of the CSME, through operational effectiveness at the regional, national and institutional levels. This mandate is advanced through four (4) main programme areas: 1) Harmonisation and Standardisation of Administrative Practices and Procedures (Component 100); 2) Enhancing the Effective Functioning of the Services and Labour Markets through Standardised Licensing and Certification and Mutual Recognition of Licenses and Certificates (Component 200); 3) Widening the Scope of Participation by Stakeholders and Beneficiaries in the Process of Decision-Making, Implementation and Operation of the Single Market (Component 300);and, 4) A ‘Call Down’ Facility for Consultations (Component 400). The CTCP is funded by the Government of Canada.

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