Welcome to the Caribbean Trade and Development Digest for the week of March 11-17, 2018! We are pleased to share some of the major trade and development headlines and analysis across the Caribbean region and the World. We hope you enjoy this edition.
Work to begin on new CARICOM Strategic Plan
Barbados Advocate: By year end the CARICOM Secretariat will be hard at work getting the framework in place for the new strategic plan for the Caribbean Community. Read more
CSME MER Framework Workshop
Barbados Advocate: It is imperative that systems be put in place to more effectively monitor and evaluate the CARICOM integration journey. So says Dr. Richard Brown, Director, CARICOM Single Market and Sectoral Programmes. Read more
CARICOM observer mission releases preliminary statement on Grenada elections
CARICOM: At the invitation of the Government of Grenada the CARICOM Secretariat constituted an eleven-member team to observe Grenada’s Parliamentary Election held March 13, 2018.The full statement may be read here.
Protecting consumers in the CSME
CARICOM: It is important to consider the protection of the consumer as many persons now engage suppliers in a different jurisdiction. This was posited by a senior official from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat during the Barbados Fair Trading Commission’s (FTC) annual lecture series held in Barbados. Read more
EU Lists US Exports it could hit
CNNMoney: The EU has published a list of hundreds of American products that it could target if President Donald Trump moves forward with new tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum. Read more
EP wants to include gender equality in free-trade agreements
EURACTIV: The European Parliament has adopted a resolution to better account for gender equality in trade agreements. The commission could follow up on the resolution in its agreement with Chile, which would be the first to integrate such a chapter. Read more
India-EU trade: India, EU to decide fate of trade agreement next month
Economic Times: New Delhi: India and the European Union will discuss next month resumption of the much-delayed Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) that hasn’t progressed much over the past five years. Read more
Vietnamese farmers expect higher profits with CPTPP
Vietnam Net: At least $40 billion worth of export turnover from farm produce in 2018 is within reach, some experts believe. Read more
Australian Financial Review: Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is pushing for free trade deals with Indonesia and the wider region to be signed by the end of this year, as he insisted there were “no protectionists” around the table at the ASEAN-Australia summit in Sydney. Read more
Buhari cancels Rwanda trip, reconsiders signing African trade agreement
Premium Times: President Muhammadu Buhari has cancelled his trip to Kigali, Rwanda scheduled for Monday. Mr. Buhari was expected to attend an Extraordinary Summit of the African Union (AU) on Tuesday, March 21, to sign the framework agreement for establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area. Read more
Top five trade deals that changed history
World Finance: Today, the global trading network is well established, but it has taken multiple decades and various trade agreements to reach the current degree of complexity. Read more
Jordan suspends free trade agreement with Turkey
Ahval: The Jordanian government suspended a free trade agreement with Turkey, citing unfair competition, the Jordan Times reported. Read more
Winners and Losers in an EU-UK agreement
Financial Times: Read the article here.
Indonesian President Widodo wants a free trade agreement with Australia
Sydney Morning Herald: Indonesian President Joko Widodo will push to sign off an Australia-Indonesia free trade agreement when he meets Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull this weekend, declaring that only “technical” details were delaying the deal. Read more
The Globe and Mail: Now that International Trade Minister François-Philippe Champagne has put Canada’s signature on the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) agreement, the doors to the Asia-Pacific are about to crack open for Canadian businesses. Read more
Severing NAFTA ties harms much more than trade
The Hill: U.S. ties with Mexico and Canada touch the daily lives of more Americans than ties with any other two countries in the world. Trade, border connections, tourism, family ties and mutual security concerns link us closely, but we are endangering those links and our wellbeing by a contentious modernization of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Read more
What impact will trade agreements have on global food markets?
Devex: The political uncertainty surrounding the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement and North American Free Trade Agreement, as well as the implications of Brexit, has left experts struggling to understand what their impacts will have on markets — particularly in developing countries. Read more
Trade War Bad for Region
My commentary in the Business Authority of March 18 (page 15) on the possible fall-out of any trade war between the US and other major trading powers on the Caribbean.