Canada to host summit with CARICOM leaders

Bridgetown, Barbados – Canada will host the summit of Caribbean  Community (CARICOM) leaders and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in Ottawa next month, informed sources have said.

The sources told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) that the two day summit will be held on October 18-19 and that both sides are engaged in the planning stages.

The Antigua and Barbuda government following its weekly Cabinet meeting on Thursday, said in a statement that Prime Minister Gaston Browne had “reported” that “a CARICOM/Canada Summit will take place next month.

“Closer relations with Canada are being developed, especially after the Canadians moved to institute a visa requirement for all persons visiting the country (with a 1,000 mile border with the USA),” the statement noted.

In June this year, the communique issued following the meeting between CARICOM foreign ministers and their Canadian counterpart, noted that they had “reaffirmed the enduring value of the deep and dynamic partnership between Canada and CARICOM, and strengthened their commitment to sustainability, resilience, climate action, access to finance, regional security, and shared values”.

The communique noted that in reviewing concrete progress on the Canada-CARICOM Roadmap for Action, Ministers noted results in key areas such as climate resilience, trade, inclusive governance, and multilateral engagement.

In noted that in February this year, Prime Minister Trudeau said Canada is now implementing CAD$44.8 million in new initiatives to support CARICOM in addressing the climate crisis, and the Canada-CARICOM Expert Deployment Mechanism completed 48 capacity building initiatives in 2022 alone.

The upcoming summit will most likely discuss the ongoing political and socio-economic situation in Haiti.

The foreign ministers had acknowledged that the ongoing political and security crisis in Haiti is a humanitarian challenge and de-stabilising influence in the region, and that it must be addressed through coordinated international action and Haitian-led solutions.

The meeting also agreed to continue working collaboratively towards the establishment of a permanent mechanism to deepen the strategic partnership between Canada and CARICOM, building on the Canada-CARICOM Roadmap for Action, and addressing the ongoing political and security crisis in Haiti. (CMC)

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