CARICOM, UN to strengthen cooperation at New York meeting

CARICOM Secretary-General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque

Cooperation between the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the United Nations (UN) System will be further strengthened around several issues including climate change, security, human development, health and education at the Ninth CARICOM-United Nations General Meeting this week.

The two-day meeting begins 20 July 2017 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. It is happening against the backdrop of a changing international environment, replete with uncertainty and complexity, and requiring greater collaboration.

CARICOM Secretary-General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque is leading a delegation from the CARICOM Secretariat which also includes Ambassador Colin Granderson, Assistant Secretary-General, Foreign and Community Relations, and Dr. Douglas Slater, Assistant Secretary-General, Human and Social Development. The Community’s representatives are also drawn from regional organisations including the Caribbean Centre for Development Administration (CARICAD), Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM), Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC), Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), University of the West Indies (UWI), and the University of Guyana (UG).

The Meeting features a number of working sessions to be co-chaired by Ambassador Granderson and the UN’s Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Mr Tayé-Brook Zerihoun. The Secretaries-General of CARICOM and the United Nations will address a High-Level Session on 20 July.

CARICOM and the UN work closely in pursuit of the General Assembly Resolution 69/265 that articulates a goal for the organisations’ Secretaries General to “continue to promote and expand cooperation with their respective mandates, so as to increase the capacity of the two organisations to attain their objectives and to seek answers to global challenges.”

The two organisations have therefore been strengthening cooperation on a broad range of areas such as sustainable development including climate change, non-communicable diseases, electoral management, crime and security, statistics, and agriculture and food security.

The First, Second and Third CARICOM UN General Meetings were held in New York in 1997, 2000 and 2004 respectively. The Fourth Meeting was held in Guyana in 2007 and the Fifth Meeting in 2009, back in New York. The Sixth General Meeting, held at the CARICOM Secretariat in July 2011, was pivotal in reviewing the strategic focus of cooperation under a Regional Strategic Framework (RSF). The RSF was helpful in identifying the areas where cooperation with the UN System was aligned with CARICOM’s priorities.

At the Seventh General Meeting, hosted by the United Nations in New York in July 2013, four major areas were discussed: Integration and Development of the Caribbean Community, Sustainable Development and Climate Change, the Post-2015 Agenda, and Human Development and Security Challenges in the Caribbean.

Among the matters underscored were the existing gaps in capacity building, both institutionally and with regard to the SIDS Programme of Action; the need for disaggregated data on the Caribbean; better coordination and exchange of information between CARICOM and the United Nations system; and giving priority to future collaboration on non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

The Eighth General Meeting, which was hosted by the CARICOM Secretariat in Guyana, dedicated specific sessions to dialogue on Financing for Development; the Post 2015 Development Agenda; and Climate Change, as critical international meetings were imminent on the adoption of the post-2015 development agenda and climate change.

The Community has used these Meetings to emphasise the need for access to concessionary development financing on the basis of vulnerabilities and lack of resilience. CARICOM has consistently expressed its support for a report commissioned by UNDP which proposed that graduation criterion be replaced or at least supplemented by a criterion based on economic vulnerability and not merely GDP.


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  1. J.John-Charles
    July 20, 2017

    When ever I hear Global warming or climate change,I just laugh,because the climate have been changing and it will continue to change.We have an incident recorded in the bible.Paul and others were traveling on a ship to Rome and there arose a massive storm.It was so severe that several days past and they had seen no sun during the day and no moon or stars in the night to give them light Acts 27:20. We will do well to remember 2000 yrs. ago there were no burning toxic materials to pollute the atmosphere,No planes no vehicles,fridges,or batteries.Even the boat they were on, it’s energy was the wind.If we have such a storm today, the cry would be CLIMATE CHANGE.
    Things will be different when the curse is lifted on planet earth……Isaiah 11:6-9

    Until then,be ready for Christ may return today.

  2. Anon
    July 20, 2017

    They need to convey the importance of the UN to Dominica’s admin. I couldn’t help noticing the credentials of those on this delegation. Remember Dominica’s ambassador had just got his doctorate then transferred to a lesser US post, then they just plugged anyone…well Bannis into what they treat as just a hole at the UN. When they had a specialist, best brain for the post….well Crispin in that post with impeccable credentials representing Dominica a few years back, they merely exiled him in NY. Now see CARICOM is sending some of their best to rep us at UN level. Makes Dominica look like ‘a joke dat man’.

    • July 20, 2017

      The importance of the UN? I wouldn’t lose any sleep over that, tourists from a single cruise ship do more for everyday Dominicans than the useless UN has done since independence.

      • Anon
        July 20, 2017

        Yes the UN. Must admit we are donor dependent, though we’d like to shake that some day it is real. I like your take on many things but on this I’m afraid U are taking Trump a bit too seriously that you are beginning to quote him.

      • July 21, 2017

        Come on, I can’t stand Trump, and my words and positions have nothing to do with such a person. And yes, I’m aware we’re donor dependent, I just don’t see the UN as being useful in that or any other regard. But to show you that I’m not just being a hater, I also don’t like the Castro regime at all, but they do send physicians here and accept our university students there, so I cannot say the relationship is not worthwhile to Dominicans.

    • Anonymous
      July 24, 2017

      Correction. The Dominican Ambassador does not have a Ph.D. , so he did not get a doctorate. He is embarrassing himself and us.

      • July 24, 2017

        While often repeated by his political enemies, this is false. Vince Henderson holds an earned academic doctorate.

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