• 16 FEB 2023

CARICOM Heads Meet in The Bahamas

Prime Minister Dr the Hon. Keith Rowley today (Thursday 16th February 2023) joined regional leaders in Nassau, The Bahamas for day one of the 44th Regular Meeting of the CARICOM Heads of Government.

During the plenary session this morning, heads discussed the CARICOM agri-food systems agenda and the steps taken to prioritise regional food security. They also received reports on COVID-19 and other emerging health issues and on the progress of the implementation of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).

Earlier today CARICOM leaders met with the Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada.

Prime Minister Trudeau told heads that Canada is working to expand and simplify access for trusted travellers from CARICOM countries and other countries in the region.

The Canadian Prime Minister also announced initiatives to help support the region including:

–  $44.8 million in new funding to tackle the climate crisis in the Caribbean

– $1.8 million to target illicit drug trafficking and strengthen border and maritime security in the Caribbean

Turning his attention specifically to Haiti, Prime Minister Trudeau said he believes together CARICOM, Canada and international partners can help Haitians bring an end to the ongoing crisis and build a better, and more hopeful, future for their country. To this end, he pledged $10 million to support the International Office on Migration to strengthen the protection and resilience of Haitian women and children along the Haiti-Dominican Republic border and an additional $12.3 million in humanitarian assistance for Haiti.

The situation in Haiti was high on the agenda when heads met in caucus in the afternoon session today. During the closed-door meeting, the leaders were also scheduled to discuss community governance and border issues.

Prime Minister Rowley also met today with former US Senator Chris Dodd, who was recently appointed as Special Presidential Advisor for the Americas.

Minister of Energy and Energy Industries and Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister, the Hon. Stuart Young and Minister of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs, Senator the Hon. Dr. Amery Browne were present for this meeting.

Minister Young also met today with Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Transformation, US Department of State, Anna Shpitsberg.