Caribbean Trade & Development Digest – January 8-14, 2017

Source: Pixabay

Welcome to the first Caribbean Trade and Development Digest for 2017!  I am pleased to share some of the major trade and development headlines and analysis across the Caribbean region and the World for the weeks of January 8-14, 2017. 

For past issues of our weekly Caribbean Trade & Development Digest, please visit here.

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REGIONAL

Brexit looms; Trade Pact now, says Dominican Envoy

Dominican Today: Dominican Republic’s ambassador to the UK on Thursday said negotiations toward a bilateral agreement should be expedited so the country can deal with Brexit’s negative consequences. Read more

Obama ends ‘Wet foot, dry foot’ policy for Cubans

Wisconsin Rapids Tribune: President Obama announced Thursday an end to the 20-year-old “wet foot, dry foot” policy that allowed most Cuban migrants who reach U.S. soil to stay and become legal permanent residents after one year. Read more 

Cuba’s President Raul Castro meets with head of US Chamber of Commerce

Reuters: The head of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce met with Cuban President Raul Castro and in separate meetings with members of Castro’s economic cabinet on Friday, as they prepare for the advent of a more hostile Trump administration next week. Read more 

Serbia formalises diplomatic relations with CARICOM

Jamaica Observer: The Caribbean Community (Caricom) grouping has formalised diplomatic relations with the Republic of Serbia, with the eastern European country indicating that it intends to promote cooperation with a region where it has already been active in the past. Read more

64 percent reduction in Jamaicans being denied entry to Trinidad

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade is reporting a 64 per cent reduction in the number of Jamaicans who have been denied entry to Trinidad and Tobago for the period March to December 2016. Read more

Persons being sensitised about travel in CSME States

Jamaica Information Service: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade has started a public-education campaign to sensitise the public on travel and employment guidelines within CARICOM countries. Read more

CARICOM, UN Women Ink support pact for gender equality

Stabroek: A two-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) outlining areas of support to drive the achievement of gender equality goals was signed yesterday by the Caricom Secretariat and the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women). Read more

Crucial Year for CARICOM process, says Secretary-General

Caribbean News Now: The thirty-ninth meeting of the Community Council of Ministers opened on Monday at the CARICOM headquarters in Guyana, under the chairmanship of Guyana’s vice president and minister for foreign affairs, Carl Greenidge. Read more

Japan looking at Barbados Hub

Barbados Advocate: Japan is considering this island as a hub for its tourists who want to experience what this region has to offer. This from Japan’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Barbados, Teruhiko Shinada, during a courtesy call to The Barbados Advocate yesterday. Read more

Jamaica’s relationship with Trinidad & Tobago improving

Jamaica Observer: Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Senator Kamina Johnson Smith says that, since the intervention of the Government, there has been a 64 per cent decrease in the number of Jamaicans refused entry into Trinidad and Tobago. Read more

CARICOM seeks to strengthen ties with the US

Antigua Observer: The Heads of Government within the Caricom member states will most likely be acting on a recommendation from the Council of Ministers to push to strengthen ties with the United States (US). Read more

CARICOM wants good working relationship with the Trump Administration

Jamaica Observer: The Caribbean Community (Caricom) Council of Ministers has ended a two-day meeting here Tuesday saying it was appreciative of the Caribbean’s good working relationship with past US administrations and was looking forward to working with the Donald Trump administration.Read more

INTERNATIONAL

US files WTO complaint against Chinese aluminum subsidies

WTO News: On 12 January the United States notified the WTO Secretariat that it requested dispute consultations with China regarding alleged subsidies provided by China to its producers of primary aluminium. Read more

World Bank: 2.7 percent growth in trade in 2017

Global Trade Magazine: Global economic growth is forecast to accelerate moderately to 2.7 percent in 2017 after a post-crisis low last year, the World Bank said in a report released today. Read more

President Obama’s Final Economic Report is Released

Whitehouse: The 2017 Economic Report of the President reviews the economic record of the Obama Administration, focusing on how policies have promoted inclusive growth. Read more 

Global Economy looks to Asia

East Asia Forum: Japan, China and the rest of East Asia enjoyed rapid development and rising living standards by opening up their economies and becoming integral parts of the global trade and economic system.Read more

Products under APTA increased

The Nation: Ministers from countries party to the Asia-Pacific Trade AGreement (APTA) met during the Fourth APTA Ministerial Council to conclude negotiations that will more than double the number of products under preferential tariff treatment in order to expand trade and boost growth in the region Read more 

John Kerry defends TPP in last trip as Secretary of State

Global News (Canada): Secretary John Kerry making his last trip as the top U.S. diplomat, on Friday defended the 12-nation trade pact that the incoming administration said it would scrap and urged countries to refrain from provocative acts in the South China Sea. Read more

Trans-Pacific Partnership not dead yet, says Australia 

Financial Review: The Australian government refuses to concede the Trans-Pacific Partnership is dead and says the United States needs more time to come to a final position on the 12-nation free-trade pact. Read more 

UK Exports show sign of pound boost

BBC: Evidence is emerging that the sharp drop in the pound is boosting UK exports, economists say. Read more 

Obama lifts 20-year sanctions on Sudan

Deutsche Welle: US President Barack Obama is to lift some trade and investments sanctions against Africa’s third largest country. But the country will still remain a state sponsor of terrorism in Washington’s eyes. Read more

Trump Advisor: TPP dead, will move quickly on bilateral trade deals

Reuters: President-elect Donald Trump will not revive his predecessor’s stalled Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal in any form, but will quickly pursue bilateral trade agreements, a Trump transition policy adviser said. Read more 

Nick Clegg says May should go for Norway-style Agreement with EU

The Guardian: Theresa May should return the UK to the same 1960s trading arrangements it had with Europe before it joined the EU if she decides there is no alternative to a hard Brexit, according to former deputy prime minister Nick Clegg. Read more 

The Netherlands will block and UK-EU deal without tax avoidance measures

The Guardian: The Netherlands will block any EU trade deal with the UK unless it signs up to tough tax avoidance regulations preventing it from becoming an attractive offshore haven for multinationals and the rich, the deputy prime minister of the country has said. Read more

FACT SHEET: The Obama Administration’s Trade Enforcement Record

WhiteHouse: From day one, President Obama and his Administration have vigorously worked to build a far more capable trade enforcement system.  The result has been a strong record of enforcement victories that are helping to level the playing field for American workers and businesses. Read more 

Have we hit ‘peak’ trade?

World Economic Forum: Over the past five years, global trade growth has been stagnant. With protectionist sentiment intensifying across advanced economies and China and other emerging markets (EMs) appearing to pivot away from export-oriented growth strategies that had incentivised the creation of global supply chains in the 2000s, a hypothesis informally known as ‘peak trade’ has become increasingly popular (Economist 2014). Read more 

China exports slump more than expected

CNBC: China’s exports slumped more than expected in December as global trade remained sluggish while the growth in imports also cooled, official data showed Friday. Read more

NEW ON CARIBBEAN TRADE LAW & DEVELOPMENT

St Vincent and the Grenadines ratifies the Trade Facilitation Agreement

In Defence of Caribbean Citizenship by Investment Programmes

Liked this issue? Read past issues of our weekly Caribbean Trade & Development Digest, please visit here.To receive these mailings directly to your inbox, please follow our blog.

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