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Contact: Julita Peter

June 16, 1998 - A cross of individuals from the private and public sectors came together Monday to discuss one of the protocols amending the Treaty establishing the Caribbean Community.

In the St. Lucia context, it is felt that there is need for a revised timetable for the approval of the remaining protocols amending the Treaty of Chaguaramus.  The consultation looked at Protocol Four which refers to trade policy and Protocol Seven which refers to disadvantaged countries, sectors and regions.

Minister of Trade, Industry and Consumer Affairs, Honourable Dr. Walter Francois, is concerned about the impact of these protocols on the private sector and national economy.  He has also expressed reservations about local and regional competition that is likely to arise.  Dr. Francois is urging members of the private and public sectors to pay careful attention to protocol seven, under which the provisions of More Developed Countries (MDCs) and Less Developed Countries (LDCs) are defined.

The protocols on industrial, agricultural and trade policy and on disadvantaged countries are expected to be completed and ready for signature at the 19th meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government, July 1998.  The protocols relating to transportation policy, competition policy and disputes settlement, should be ready for the 10th Inter-Sessional in the first quarter of 1999.


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