Japan hosts CARICOM-Japan ministerial meeting next month

GEORGETOWN, Guyana, CMC – The Guyana-based Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat says the second CARICOM-Japan Ministerial Meeting in Tokyo early next month will set a new strategic framework to replace what was adopted in 2000.

The Ministerial meeting follows the 14th CARICOM-Japan Consultations held in Guyana in April.

The First CARICOM-Japan Ministerial meeting in Tokyo in 2000 resulted in “A New Framework for CARICOM-Japan Cooperation for the Twenty-First Century’.

“That Framework established priority areas for cooperation between CARICOM and Japan, and proposed a number of mechanisms to facilitate greater collaboration,” the Secretariat said in a statement.

“In addition to the revised version of the new framework, the meeting is expected to adopt a document titled `Partnership for Peace, Development and Prosperity between Japan and Member States of the Caribbean Community (Outcome Document)’, as well as the Guidelines for the Japan-CARICOM Friendship and Cooperation Fund (JCFCF).”

It said the September 1-3 meeting will be co-chaired by Dominica’s Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit, who is also Chairman of the Council for Foreign and Community Relations (COFCOR) and Japan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Katsuya Okada.

“The future direction of cooperation between Japan and CARICOM, environment and climate change, and assistance for Haiti’s reconstruction are among key agenda items for discussion,” said the Secretariat noting that  a majority of CARICOM member states will attend the three-day meeting.

The Caribbean delegation will also participate in a public symposium on Climate Change and Biodiversity.

“The fourteen member countries of the CARICOM represent one of the most biologically diverse regions on the planet. However, that biodiversity is in serious danger. Most of the CARICOM member countries are small island states which now face growing threats from climate change including more frequent and intense hurricanes, subsequent flooding and erosion, and rising sea level,” the statement said.

It said that the symposium is being organized by the United Nations University, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Inter-American Development Bank.

Barbados Minister of Foreign Affairs, Maxine McLean, her Grenadian counterpart Peter David as well as Guyana’s Foreign Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett, and Sir Louis Straker, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, will make presentations at the symposium.

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