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CARICOM Secretariat hosts EPA Seminar for legislative drafters

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Friday, April 8, 2011 –   A Seminar on the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) for Legislative Drafters, organized by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat, will be held on 13 and 14 April in Antigua and Barbuda.


The forum will bring together legislative drafters of the CARIFORUM States, to interface with technocrats of the EPA Implementation Unit of the CARICOM Secretariat and regional legal experts. Each CARIFORUM State has been invited to nominate one participant.


The seminar is funded under the 9th European Development Fund (EDF), Caribbean Integration Support Programme (CISP). It is also made possible by UKaid from the Department for International Development, through the Caribbean Aid for Trade and Regional Integration Trust Fund (CARTFund).


The CARIFORUM-EU EPA places new responsibilities on the CARIFORUM States, with respect to undertaking market-opening and rules-related commitments. These commitments relate to trade in goods, trade in services and investment, as well as in trade-related subject areas, such as intellectual property, competition and government procurement. Legislative measures are necessary in many cases.


Against this backdrop, the seminar seeks to clarify the provisions of the CARIFORUM-EU EPA, point to obligations which CARIFORUM States have undertaken and identify elements of the Agreement which will require the introduction of national legislation.


“The seminar is designed to benefit legislative drafters, in particular those who will be tasked with preparing legislation to give effect to provisions of the CARIFORUM-EU EPA,” said Ms Alexis Downes-Amsterdam, Legal Officer in the EPA Implementation Unit. Ms Downes-Amsterdam added, “the seminar’s convening has also been given impetus by the EPA Implementation Unit’s commitment to strengthening engagement with legislative drafters of the CARIFORUM States, as the EPA implementation process moves apace.” Ms Downes-Amsterdam—the point person in the Unit for the upcoming seminar—is tasked with assisting CARIFORUM States with the legal measures to be adopted to give effect to their respective EPA commitments, in particular the provision of legislative drafting assistance.


Hon. Justin L. Simon Q.C., Attorney-General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Antigua and Barbuda is slated to deliver the feature address at the seminar’s opening ceremony.


The fifteen signatory Caribbean Forum of African, Caribbean and Pacific (CARIFORUM) States to the EPA are the independent CARICOM Member States and the Dominican Republic.


CONTACT: Nand C. Bardouille

      Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) Implementation Unit

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