#MontegoBay, July 7, 2018 – Jamaica – The Barbadian Government has indicated that it will remove the visa requirements for Haitians travelling to that country as it seeks to be more inclusive in its treatment of Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nationals. This is according to Prime Minister of Barbados, Hon. Mia Mottley, who said the stipulation “breaches the fundamental tenets that bind us together under the revised Treaty of Chaguaramas”.
“Those tenets relate to non-discrimination and relate to not treating anyone outside of the community in a more favourable manner than we treat each other in the community,” she said.
Ms. Mottley was addressing the opening ceremony for the 39th Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of CARICOM on Wednesday (July 4) at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in St. James. She pointed out that this arrangement is unfair, given that persons who are not members of the community are allowed to travel freely into the Caribbean without visas, and that Haiti “took the extraordinary step of signing the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas and committing to a CARICOM single market and single economy”.
The Revised Treaty establishing CARICOM, including the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME), was signed in 2001. Among the objectives are improved standard of living and work in member countries; accelerated, coordinated and sustained economic development; and an organisation for increased production and productivity.
The Meeting of the CARICOM Heads was held from July 4 to 6. Among the key agenda items are crime and violence, disaster management and climate change, and the CSME.
The Conference of Heads of Government, which consists of the Heads of Government of the Member States, is the supreme organ of the Caribbean Community and determines and provides its policy direction.