Welcome to the Caribbean Trade & Development News Digest for the week of July 21-27, 2019! We are happy to bring you the major trade and development headlines and analysis from across the Caribbean Region and the world from the past week.
Please note that there will be no digest for the week of July 28-August 3, 2019.
The WTO General Council met on July 23-24, 2019. The summary of the meeting may be viewed here. The US resubmitted its proposals on reforming the current model of eligibility for special and differential treatment, while a consortium of developing countries tabled a paper on strengthening the WTO.
US President Trump issued a memorandum to the USTR to secure reform of developing country status in the WTO. Have a read of my article on this here.
It was announced this week that Prime Minister of Barbados, the Hon. Mia Amor Mottley will be the speaker at UNCTAD’s 16th Raul Prebisch Lecture to be held September 10, 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland.
June 2020 Target For Wto Is ‘Aspirational’
Tribune 242: Elsworth Johnson, newly-appointed minister of financial services, trade and industry and Immigration, told Tribune Business he had been advised even the World Trade Organisation (WTO) itself felt the accession timeline set by The Bahamas was “extremely rigid”. Read more
Guyanese manufacturers say Plantation white sugar unacceptable; reject call for 40% tax on refined sugar
Demerara Waves: The Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association Limited (GMSA) on Monday rejected calls by a Belizean producer of Plantation white, or mill white, sugar to impose a Caribbean-wide 40 percent tax on extra-regionally refined sugar, saying that Plantation white sugar will result in poor quality products and in some cases injury to consumers. Read more
CARICOM Secretariat Team carries out CSME Sensitisation in Jamaica
CARICOM: A CARICOM Secretariat team is in Jamaica this week collaborating with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade (MFAFT) on a series of CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) engagements with the private and public sectors, labour and other stakeholders. Read more
Forex, FDI, trade in ‘freefall’
Barbados Today: Caribbean capacity to generate foreign exchange, investment and exports appears be to freefall, a senior official of the United Nations regional economic watchdog has suggested. Read more
Surinamese business delegation to visit Russia – Lavrov
TASS: Russia and Suriname will prepare a visit of a delegation of Surinamese businessmen and government officials to Russia, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Saturday after talks with Foreign Minister of Suriname Yldiz Deborah Pollack-Beighle. Read more
UK on course for no-deal Brexit as Johnson rejects EU agreement
The Guardian: Boris Johnson has set the UK on an apparent course towards a no-deal Brexit by playing down the likelihood of any talks with the EU unless Brussels agrees to scrap the existing withdrawal agreement and Irish backstop, both of which it has ruled out. Read more
Assuming EU will not budge, Britain ramps up preparations for no-deal Brexit
Reuters: The British government is working on the assumption that the European Union will not renegotiate its Brexit deal and is ramping up preparations to leave the bloc on Oct. 31 without an agreement, senior ministers said on Sunday. Read more
Johnson ready to talk if EU changes position on Brexit deal
RTE: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has told EU leaders he will sit down for Brexit talks when they indicate that they are ready to shift position, otherwise Britain will prepare for leaving without an agreement, his spokeswoman has said. Read more
Fed Survey Finds Widespread Concerns Over Trade
Jamaica Gleaner: The United States Federal Reserve’s latest nationwide survey, released on Wednesday, reveals that despite growing worries about the impact of President Donald Trump’s trade battles, the overall economy remained solid. Read more
India’s proposal for Wto reforms supported by a large majority of countries
Livemint: A large majority of countries on Wednesday endorsed a joint proposal by India, South Africa, and seven other countries for reforming the World Trade Organization, in the face of existential threats to the survival of multilateral trading system, say trade envoys. Read more
Canada and Europe make deal to work around blocked World Trade Organization
CBC Canada: Canada and the European Union have agreed on a plan to set up a substitute appeals body for trade disputes between them, they announced Thursday. Read more
ICC welcomes EU and Canada’s decision to arbitrate WTO trade disputes
ICC: The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) welcomes the European Union (EU) and Canada’s announcement to utilize international arbitration panels to resolve trade disputes under World Trade Organization (WTO) rules. Read more
Africa must boost industrial capacity to benefit from free-trade zone: AfDB
Reuters: African nations will need to boost output of goods and services and integrate payment systems if they are to take advantage of a new $3.4 trillion economic initiative, according to the head of the African Development Bank. Read more
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