Barbados’ Ambassador to CARICOM, David Comissiong (centre) who displayed some of the ‘I Am CARICOM’ memorabilia available, was accompanied by Hipolina Joseph (second from left), Deputy Programme Manager for Strategic Management of the CARICOM Secretariat; Ambassador Gail Mathurin (right), Director General of the CARICOM Office of Trade Negotiations (OTN) and a member of the Executive Management team of the CARICOM Secretariat as well as CARICOM Youth Ambassadors Tirshatha Jeffrey (left) and Chad Monerville, during the press conference.
Barbados hosts successful consultations on new CARICOM Strategic Plan
National consultations held in Barbados this week to help map the way forward for the results-focused new ten-year Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Strategic Plan, have been described as “rich and fruitful”.
The CARICOM Secretariat team participating in the national consultations met with the media on Tuesday in the conference room of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, to report on the discussions. Barbados’ Ambassador to CARICOM, David Comissiong, indicated that the consultations held this week with key interest groups and with youth representatives, have been successful in the effort to contribute to the new Plan, which will replace the first CARICOM Strategic Plan 2015-2019, which ended in December 2019.
He was accompanied by Hipolina Joseph, Deputy Programme Manager for Strategic Management of the CARICOM Secretariat; Ambassador Gail Mathurin, Director General of the CARICOM Office of Trade Negotiations (OTN) and a member of the Executive Management team of the CARICOM Secretariat as well as CARICOM Youth Ambassadors Tirshatha Jeffrey and Chad Monerville, who also gave positive reports.
This comes as the CARICOM Secretariat moves to support CARICOM Member States in convening broad-based consultations over the next few months, to inform the development of the Strategic Plan.
Comissiong meanwhile stated, “We have just concluded two days of national consultations on CARICOM’s new strategic plan. As you may be aware, CARICOM has just concluded its first strategic plan, its 2015 to 2019 Strategic Plan and has now embarked upon the process of national consultations, that will lead to a new 2020 perhaps to 2030 ten year Strategic Plan”.
“So the CARICOM Secretariat has put together a team that has on board with it a consultant firm, and they are going from Member State to Member State engaging in discussions about what should be CARICOM’s Strategic Priorities for the immediate period ahead and what are the ideas that all member states will contribute to this grand pot, out of which will come the next Strategic Plan. So Barbados, we are very pleased to be able to host these two day consultations” he said.
On Monday he revealed, consultations were held at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, with representatives of the public and private sector, the labour movement and wider civil society, whilst youth based consultations mobilised by the two CARICOM Youth Ambassadors were held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Tuesday.
Ambassador Gail Mathurin has meanwhile noted that the CARICOM 2020 Strategic Plan and its accompanying documents, will be submitted for the approval of the Conference of Heads of Government in July 2020.
“It is an ambitious timetable, but nevertheless, we are very encouraged by what we have heard here in Barbados and indeed in the other Member States where consultations have already been held” Mathurin said. (RSM)