Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Feature: CARICOM Member States to review Draft Caribbean Fisheries Policy – COTED

By Adelle Roopchand
At the COTED and ALLIANCE closing media conference at the close of CWA 2013 in Guyana
From L-R: Chairman of the Alliance (2011-2013) - Minister Mathew Walters (Dominica), Chairman of the COTED - Minister Roland Bhola (Grenada), Host of CWA 2013 - Minister  Dr Leslie Ramsammy (Guyana) and CARICOM’s Officer-in-Charge of Trade and Economic Integration Desiree Field-Ridley 
The Ministerial Council of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) has reiterated its support for the Caribbean Community Common Fisheries Policy (CCCFP) and has called on CARICOM Member States to ensure that they expedie their internal consultations to facilitate this approval.

The Council made the call at the 4th Special Meeting of the Ministerial Council of the CRFM held at the CARICOM Secretariat in Turkeyen, Guyana earlier this month.

Milton Haughton, Executive Director of CRFM, said the Council recognises the important role of fisheries and aquaculture in the CARICOM Region and its contribution to food and nutrition security, employment, and the economic and social well-being of the people of the region.

According to Guyana’s Agriculture Minister Dr. Leslie Ramsammy, “The Ministers of Agriculture and COTED endorsed the Common Fisheries Policy and commended it for approval. At this stage the Common Fisheries Policy will be sent through the Legal Affairs Committee of CARICOM.” 

Dr. Ramsammy added that the ministers are committed to urge their Attorneys General to complete the internal reviews and move the draft policy on for approval. Member states have up to the end of January 2014 to complete the vetting process. 

CARICOM’s Officer-in-Charge of Trade and Economic Integration, Desiree Field-Ridley, said subsequent to approval at the country level, the CCCFP will be sent to the region’s Council for Foreign and Community Relations and then the CARICOM Heads for their approval to take effect in 2014.

Dr. Ramsammy added, “Our hope is that that process can be completed in time that it will move to the Heads for signature so let’s just say 2014.”

The CCCFP seeks to establish, within the context of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas, appropriate measures for the conservation, management, sustainable utilization and development of fisheries resources and related ecosystems; the building of capacity amongst fishers and the optimization of the social and economic returns from the fisheries; and the promotion of competitive trade and stable market conditions.

The CCCFP was formulated and then unanimously endorsed by the 4th Meeting of the Ministerial Council of the CRFM on 20 May 2011, supported by the 38th Special Meeting of the Council of Ministers for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) held on 14 October 2011.

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai