Caribbean Political Economy

A Long-Term Road Map for Integration, John Hunter

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From time to time the idea of a renewed federation of the West Indies is brought up. Though it might seem as if such plans are unnecessary for the time being, they are essential in a long term vision of where want our region to be…

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A Caribbean Integration Party and New Federalism, Jon

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Responding to Tennyson Joseph’s paper and comments, this contributor argues that a Caribbean Integration Party should take the form of a social movement. He goes on to outline a radically different structure for a new West Indian federation to make it both representative and effective.

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Turning Around CARICOM, The Landell Mills Report

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CARICOM is in crisis. This is for three reasons….the crisis is sufficiently real to put the very existence of CARICOM in question…

Access Report (CARICOM Website)

Is CARICOM in danger of collapsing? Five Views

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Ivelaw Griffith, Norman Girvan, Richard Bernal, Phlliip Hughes and Paget de Freitas give varying views on the danger of collapse of the Caribbean Community to the Washington-based InterAmerican Dialogue

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CARICOM Communiqué: Cold Comfort? Norman Girvan

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The Communiqué issued by Caricom leaders,   at the close of their 23rd Intersessional meeting on March 8-9 offers few clues on the decisive action needed to salvage the regional project called for by Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves in his pre-Summit letter to fellow heads and by the Consultants’ report on the reform of the Secrertariat. Readers are invited to check out the document for themselves and to come to their own conclusion.

Read the Communiqué

Cede sovereignty to CARICOM’s centre, Jamaica Gleaner

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Irwin LaRocque, the still relatively new secretary general of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), arrived at a right conclusion. We are sceptical, however, about his analysis….

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CARICOM: Ambition + Inaction = Failure, Sir Ronald Sanders

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A recent statement by the Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Irwin La Rocque, that the region has been “overly ambitious in its integration targets”, coming from the person who is expected to drive the regional integration process, is cause for disappointment..

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Cari-Crisis–Again, Norman Girvan

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“Crisis” is one of those words that is used so much that it has practically lost its meaning. And if there were a competition among regional organisations on which of them was most often said to be “in crisis”, my bet would be on Caricom winning by a wide margin…

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Imagine a leader leading Sir Ronald Sanders

Prime Minister Gonsalves’ Letter to Secretary General LaRocque Feb 2012

The “deficit crisis’ facing Caricom Nation Editorial

Time to Revisit the West Indian Commission! People’s Empowerment Party

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The Peoples Empowerment Party (PEP) embraces the year 2012 as an opportunity for the Barbadian and Caribbean people to “take a fresh guard” in relation to both their individual island nation building projects and to their collective multi-territory Caribbean Community project…

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CMCE statement of support for new CARICOM Secretary-General

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Message from the Caribbean Movement for Civil Empowerment to Irwin LaRocque, newly appointed Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community

We take note of your express vigour, intended modus operandi and positive approach to regional integration, and the way ahead for CARICOM in the midst of the turmoil and crises in which the region now exists in the wider global context. We also take particular cognizance that your statement made reference to a departure from the “business as usual”, that critical for moving the region forward are governance reform, that the CSME is not on hold, that the use of innovative ways of gaining buy-in from the regional public through use of social media and ICTs is needed and the implementation of the draft strategy for communications…

Read full CMCE statement

A Comment on the selection of Irwin LaRocque as CARICOM Secretary-General, Norman Girvan

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I welcome the selection of Irwin LaRocque to be the new Secretary-General of CARICOM. I know him to be a person of professionalism, integrity and proven commitment to regionalism. However, Mr LaRocque should not be given a basket to carry water. If CARICOM is to be re-energised and if the implementation deficit is to be addressed; Mr LaRocque will need to have the full support of the Heads of Government for reform of governance to provide legal teeth to the decisions of CARICOM organs and to establish an executive authority to oversee implementation.

Norman Girvan

27 July 2011

Vision and Leadership: The Infinite Unity of Caribbean Needs, Sir Shridath Ramphal

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In the inaugural G. Arthur Brown Memorial Lecture of the Bank of Jamaica, Sir Shridath points to the failure of Caribbean leaders,  to,  rise to the regional challenge, fixated as they are with retaining the vestiges of ‘local control’—a hangover from the colonial era.,  

To have been invited to deliver the G Arthur Brown Lecture is honour enough; to have the opportunity of inaugurating the Lecture Series that memorialises this great son of Jamaica and the Caribbean is beyond deserving. …

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The Way Forward For The Caribbean As A Region, Robert Stephens

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Let us admit the fact that as individual islands and certainly in the case of Jamaica, if we continue down our current insular path of Governance and Economic Under-Development we will not survive as a sustainable society. Norman Manley and those who proposed a Federation as the path to sustainable development were correct over 50 years ago and the concept seriously needs revisiting. Here are some simple facts…

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Message to the CARICOM Summit, CMCE

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Participants at a public forum on The Future of Caribbean Regional Integration held on June 30th at the UWI St Augustine reaffirmed that the people of the Caribbean view integration as crucial for the region’s survival and development; yet there is a strong sense that the process of integration is in decline and is in need of renewed leadership…

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CMCE Petition with Signatures

Caribbean People’s Integration Petition

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The Caribbean Movement for Civil Empowerment (CMCE), a new people-centred organisation established to advance meaningful regional integration in the Caribbean is embarking on a drive to have our Caribbean leaders listen to us citizens and promote true democracy driven by us the people. The most effective way for Caribbean societies to survive the onslaught of the new era in which we live is to forge closer and stronger linkages. We therefore need progressive and genuine action on the part of our leaders.

Caribbean leaders meet in St. Kitts/Nevis from 1-4 July. We can’t afford to let the Caribbean Community fade away into oblivion. Let your voice be heard. Be counted!
Caribbean Movement for Civil Empowerment
Website: http://caribmove.webs.com

View and sign Petition

Caribbean Regional Governance and the Sovereignty/Statehood Problem, Matthew Bishop and Anthony Payne

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Published by the Centre of International Governance Innovation in Waterloo, Canada. Matthew Bishop is lecturer at the Institute of International Relations, U.W.I., St Augustine Trinidad; and Anthony Payne is Professor of Politics at the University of Sheffield, UK.

Why have the many deficiencies of the current system of Caribbean regional governance not been seriously addressed over a period of more than 40 years? This paper argues that the key blockage is the continued adherence of Caribbean political leaders to a conception of sovereignty and statehood that is inappropriate and outdated…

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Re-Energising CARICOM Integration, Prime Minister Tillman Thomas

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Prime Minister Tillman Thomas’s proposals to the Heads of Government deal with reforming CARICOM governance to address the ‘implementation deficit’, management of the Secretariat, prioritising the benefits of economic integration, resolving issues in the movement of Community nationals, mobilising civil society in support of integration and an immediate action plan.

Complete document

Study Shows Jamaicans ‘Averse’ to Caricom Jamaica Observer

Caribbean Powerlessness, CaribMove

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The Caribbean Movement for Civil Empowerment (formerly the CARICOM Civll Society Network) is pointing to the continuing relevance of the Report of the West Indian Commission of 1992, except for one notable shortcoming: the absence of supranationality in its proposals to address Caricom’s implementation deficit.

Even though the West Indian Commission was completed and reported since 1992, it simply amazes me how well it speaks to the issues affecting the region; how poignantly it points out the problems that needs to be fixed, as well as how applicable and sensible some of its recommendations still are. However, something about it rather bothers me…

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CARICOM to retreat in order to advance, Norman Girvan

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The CARICOM Intersessional Summit held in Grenada on February 25-26 ended with a decision to hold a Heads of Government retreat in Guyana to deliberate on the direction of the regional integration movement. Leaders say that they are aware of the ‘scepticism and impatience’ of the public on the slow progress of integration; and that the present structure of governance is not ‘delivering what the Caribbean people demand’.
In the run-up to the retreat, Caribbean citizens need to continue to speak out to their leaders and to lobby vigorously on the urgency of re-dynamising the integration movement and to offer ideas on how to do it. Below is a selection of recent commentaries that addresses issues of Caribbean identity and its link with economic performance, the marginalisation of women, crime and violence, CARICOM’s implementation shortfalls and its participation deficit, and leadership.

The Case for a New Caribbean Identity, Marc Ramsay

CARICOM, Collective Responsibility and Female Marginalisation, Carolyn Cooper

Crime and Violence in CARICOM, Mervyn Claxton

CARICOM’S ‘Original Sin’, Norman Girvan

Is The West Indies West Indian? Sir Shridath Ramphal

CARICOM: Its Leadership That’s Needed Sir Ronald Sanders

A Call For Support For A Caribbean Political Union

CARICOM, Collective Responsibility and Female Marginalisation, Carolyn Cooper

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Last Sunday, ‘mi head tek mi’ when I saw the poster for the conference on ‘Collective Responsibility for the 21st Century’, jointly hosted by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the University of the West Indies (UWI) and the Commonwealth Secretariat. I simply couldn’t believe it. The advertisement featured 11 men. Not even one token woman! Nor a single young man…

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See also “‘Mek West Indies Federate’: Celebrating the Arts of Regional Integration in the Poetry of Louise Bennett,” published in the proceedings of the UWI conference to mark the 30th anniversary of CARICOM: Caribbean Imperatives: Regional Governance and Integrated Development.

Visit Carolyn’s blog at,   http://carolynjoycooper.wordpress.com/

Commonwealth Secretariat, UWI call for greater regional integration CARICOM News Network

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