CARICOM 46th regular meeting focuses on developing region’s welfare – SG Barnett

─ as the 46th regular meeting begins in Georgetown, Guyana

The 46th regular meeting of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) will take a resolute approach towards implementing initiatives and policies to further improve the welfare of the region and its citizens.

Guyana is hosting this year’s high-level regional conference which got underway at the National Cultural Centre (NCC) Sunday afternoon, with several regional leaders and government officials in attendance.

CARICOM’s Secretary General, Dr Carla Barnett

The four-day session will see the country heads partaking in intense dialogue, collectively pooling their wisdom and devising sustainable solutions to the threats and challenges facing this part of the globe.

CARICOM’s Secretary General, Dr Carla Barnett underscored the importance of the regular session, noting that it will see the region’s resilience, adaptability, and development being examined in detail.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Dr Barnett said CARICOM is committed to retaining the region as a zone of peace, despite various border controversies and the passage of guns and dangerous drugs through lands and seas.

She stated that significant technical and policy works have led to accomplishments in various areas, including food and nutrition, security, advancing aspects of the CARICOM single market and economy, border security, and air and maritime transportation, among others.

“Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, our past and present generations of leaders have established a solid foundation for us to build on. Our more than 50 years of existence demonstrate that the Caribbean community remains a viable integration movement. We have shown a keen appreciation of the development priorities that are critical to the region’s peace and prosperity,” the Secretary-General noted.

With President, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali taking up the Chairmanship of CARICOM, Dr Barnett stressed that there is no doubt that the Guyanese leader will drive the region’s agenda.

“The stage is well set for this new generation to engage its innovativeness, ingenuity, and dynamism to secure and improve on the gains so far achieved…Let us therefore harness the wisdom of our 50 years of existence, learning from what we have done well, and what we know we can do better and move forward with passion and determination to overcome today’s challenges.”

Further, the CARICOM leader called for active participation from youth, women, civil society, labour organisations, and the private sector to join in the efforts and lend support to develop the lives of people across the region.

CARICOM heads of government conference opens in Georgetown, Guyana Sunday afternoon

Later this week, President of the Federative Republic of Brazil, His Excellency Luis Inacio Lula da Silva will be joining the conference to participate in the talks.

The Brazillian president will meet high-level guests from Canada, the United States, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, and the United Nations, to continue robust engagement with diverse international partners on matters crucial to the sustained development and transformation of the region.

President of Suriname, Chandrikapersad Santokhi, and Prime Ministers of The Bahamas, Philip Davis; Barbados, Mia Mottley; St Vincent and the Grenadines, Ralph Gonsalves, and Grenada, Dickon Mitchell, are among the regional leaders present at the opening ceremony.