CARICOM, Italy sign MOU
GEORGETOWN, Guyana – The Guyana-based Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and Italy have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at strengthening political, scientific and technical relationships and promoting development co-operation partnership between them.
The MOU is intended to develop the human resources of CARICOM in areas vital to the development of the economies of the 15-member regional grouping notably in the fields of trade negotiation skills and trade promotion and to develop the scientific and technical capacity of CARICOM.
Other areas identified include tourism, agriculture, fisheries, mining and climate change.
A Management Committee comprising representatives from CARICOM and Italy will oversee analysis, revision and follow-up of the MOU as well as of any specific Memoranda which may be concluded arising from the original document,” a CARICOM Secretariat statement said.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Acting CARICOM Secretary General, Ambassador Lolita Applewhaite, said the MOU would strengthen “the already excellent cooperation existing between Italy and our region and in its implementation, give tangible expression to the close and friendly relations that the Community and your country have enjoyed for some time now”.
She said that CARICOM is particularly appreciative to Italy for its continued sensitivity to the challenges confronting all Small Highly Indebted Middle Income Countries (SHIMICS).
“The inherent vulnerability that is characterised by our features of small size, open economies, susceptibility to natural disasters and the vagaries of international markets have been greatly aggravated by such phenomena as the global financial and economic crises, the escalation in food and energy prices and the negative effects of global weather patterns caused by climate change.
“As the Community continues to pursue development in spite of these challenges, the advocacy of our friends in important decision making global fora to which CARICOM Member States have no access, like the G8, is critically important. We thank Italy for its continued willingness to be such an advocate.”
Applewhaite said the region was looking to the early implementation of the projects that will emanate from the MOU “so that there is no delay in the benefits to the people of the Caribbean Community”. (CMC)