Former prime minister Edison James says his United Workers Party (UWP) is supportive of the move by governments of the sub-region to have a single economic space through economic union of the OECS (Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States).
The UWP leader says economic union “is one further step where hopefully our smallness of size and our small numbers individually, can be to some extent negated by us cooperating as a larger body”.
He expects the move to result in some increased economies of scale.
James has also welcomed a planned OECS assembly where sub-regional matters including OECS economic union can be discussed by parliamentarians – government and opposition across the OECS.
The first assembly is being held in Antigua next month.
The assembly of parliamentarians is the OECS organ required to serve as a forum for deliberation on primary and secondary legislation proposed for the organisation.
The assembly is to comprise parliamentarians chosen from elected government and opposition members of national legislatures, reflecting as closely as possible the proportionate representation of government and opposition members in the legislatures at the time of selection.
James and parliamentary opposition leader Hector John last week attended a meeting of opposition parliamentarians where the sub-region’s integration efforts were discussed.
The UWP and other regional opposition parties are reported to have expressed support there for the OECS economic union.
The OECS treaty pushing forward the integration process through the establishing of an economic union went into force in January 2011.