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Group Title: Official newsletter of the Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Title: Official newsletter
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00099220/00007
 Material Information
Title: Official newsletter
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Publisher: Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Place of Publication: London, England
Publication Date: June 2005
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Bibliographic ID: UF00099220
Volume ID: VID00007
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

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Table of Contents
    Cover
        Cover
    Introduction
        Introduction
    Main
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
Full Text


S............ ..... ......



NEWSLETTER


The Antigua and Barbuda High Commission

ISSUE No.100 June 2005

/ _t rime M.inister Badiwff in Spencer has statedthat hii
J government i committee to tie fiw l
implementation ofthe Caribbean Court offustice (CCJ
in its orinal[andappel&tejuriscdtions.

Tie Prime Minister made tie comment during tde
afternoon session of tie 1 Meeting of Jead of
Government andfeaders of Parliamentary Opposition
S oftte Memiber States ofCARZCoM which was edfin St.
vnt Iluckz on 2ndJuy. 7e notedthat hi government & of
Mte view that they must accept tie realty that tie
"g ,, Caribbean must be ablG to dlsensejustice among itself
S anTdeelconfidcnt that thiejustice fair

h e Prime Minister afiopointed out that hil
government knows tiat it wiTlfave a dEficuft task in
aa onvincing iedextensiv la tfiesigifia to of-S
Prime Minister BaCdwin Spencer and Oppositin convincing e ntua andBarbui to
leader Robin yearwood at the meeting in St Lucia support tie CCJin its apelktejur&d7dtio reficing
the lrivy Councitin oondon Jfe citedtiree iandmsar
Pivy Councidc-cions tiat wilTmake tle tasfk ad cud loweverle notedtiat hs government wilijpress
forwarding convincing tiepeo.p ofiAntaua and Barahud tat tie CCJis beforefor tle region andthe
country

Antmgua andarkzuda wi/Aiave to conduct a referendum andgain a two tiirdi majority support
hotipuficly andin parliament to make the CCJ in its apipel&te juridiction applica to tie country

Opposition Leader Robin yearwood, wuo was art oftie d Antgua andf aruadi d~igation and
accompaniedSy t ad-isor ennox Veston, notedtAat iisparty ias no di~fultuy in suporting thie
government' dAcision on thief imnpimentation ofttie CCJ

The iead andLeaders off/arfamentary Opposition lokedextensiveiy at tie s(ynficance to tie
region of the C4ARCOM Singk Market and-Economy CSME. Prime Miniter Spencer during an
intervention outinedt-iat OECS countries including Antyua andaBarudi- must be given special
dffferentialtreatment iftihey are toaftry reap tie benefits oftihe CSME.

Tie SYeads and-eadrrs ofPard-amentary Opposition agreedtiat tie meeting was an historic one
andeyiedto diaibgue on otier issues affecting tihe region, They a/io agreedto review the re-institution
oftihe Association ofCartibean Parltamentarians to aidin the process.

Inside

Attorney-at-Law Clare Roberts re-elected as President
of Human Rights Commission (page3)
World Cup Cricket Stadium drawings ready for construction start in September (page 5)
Antigua and Barbuda signs PETROCARIBE Energy Co-operation (page 9)


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~I~


.............








HIGH COMMISSIONER'S MESSAGE


London was host to some of the Caribbean's
Business Community on 21st June when the
Caribbean Britain Business Council held the first
UK/Caribbean Business Forum at Lancaster House.
The Forum, which was created to facilitate dialogue
on business issues affecting UK/Caribbean trade and
investment was jointly organised by the Caribbean-
Britain Business Council (CBBC) and the Caribbean
Association of Industry and Commerce, with support
from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).

The Right Honourable Owen Arthur, Prime
Minister of Barbados gave the keynote address in
which he spoke at length on the establishment of the
Caribbean Single Market and the Economy.

During his address the Prime Minister
pointed out that "By the end of this year, it is
proposed and envisioned that five regimes to permit
the free movement of goods, services, capital, skills
and to confer new and important rights of
establishment of enterprises on Caribbean nationals
across the region will be put into effect. This single-
Market-creation phase of our economic integration
project will essentially involve the removal of the 450
restrictions in accordance with an agreed programme
that began in 2002."


In February 2005 our Prime Minister, the
Honourable Baldwin Spencer acknowledged that the
country was not yet quite ready for the CARICOM
Single Market and Economy (CSME) but that he
would pull out all the stops in an effort to get the
twin-island state ready for implementation.

He emphasised that Antigua and Barbuda is
committed to the CSME, and that there is 'no turning
back now, it's a question of letting the people
understand and appreciate that the future of the
Caribbean is intertwined and we have to move
together as one nation'.

He said, "...we certainly have to step-up our
public relations and education exercises on the whole
question of the CSME ".

Subsequently on the 10th March 2005 the
CSME Unit in the Ministry of Finance and Economy
(Industry & Commerce) held a series of consultations
on the CARICOM Single Market and Economy. These
consultations were executed in collaboration with
officials from the CARICOM Secretariat, who met with
Members of Cabinet, the Private Sector, youths and
many other stakeholders.

Arising from the discussions were many
issues relating to the CSME that were challenging, but
the Government explained the importance of
implementing this regional framework. Discussions
included, among other things, the free movement of
persons and the Regional Development Fund.

Regarding the issue of the number of
CARICOM nationals present in Antigua and Barbuda,
it was outlined that the CSME framework only allows
five categories of Skilled Persons exemption from
work permits (University Graduates, Media Workers,
Sports Persons, Artists, and Musicians).

In discussions with the Private Sector,
concerns were raised over the issue of unfair
business practices and possible redress under the
regional laws entrenched in the Revised Treaty of
Chaguaramas.

Dr Carl Roberts
High Commissioner








GOVERNMENT NEW,


Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer accepting the
database from OAS Cicelyn Norr


Antigua and Barbuda
now has its own trade
reference centres

The Foreign Trade Information
System (SICE) of the OAS Office for
Trade, Growth and Competitiveness,
through the CARICOM Capacity Building
Project funded by the Canadian
International Development Agency
(CIDA), has put together a trade
information database to meet the needs
expressed by Antigua and Barbuda in
their National Strategies for Trade
Capacity Building for greater and easier
access to trade-related information.

On 3rd June Prime Minister
Baldwin Spencer, accepted the trade
information database and the computers
from the OAS on behalf of Antigua and
Barbuda at a launch and handing over
ceremony at the Antigua and Barbuda
Investment Bank (ABIB), Redcliffe
Street, St. John's.

Trade is an essential part of
Antigua and Barbuda's economy. As
Antigua and Barbuda participates
simultaneously in negotiations at the
multilateral, regional and sub-regional


level in the WTO, the
FTAA and the CSME,
there is an increasing
demand for relevant and
up to date information to
guide policy makers and
civil society. The
database is intended not
just for use by
government agencies,
but also for the private
sector and civil society.

The Caribbean
Trade Reference
Centre (CTRC) is
comprised of thirteen
computers and country specific Trade
i Information Databases
(TID). Each database
contains the texts of official trade
agreements, related national legislation,
studies as well as other analytical tools that
may facilitate a better understanding of
trade policy issues confronting Caribbean
countries. It also includes the Hemispheric
Trade and Tariff Database provided with
the kind compliments of the Inter-American
Development Bank and valuable data from
other international organizations.

The Database will provide a
simple and user-friendly mechanism to
access regional and country-specific
information related to trade and trade
negotiations that Antigua and Barbuda is
currently involved. The database will also
assist the Government of Antigua and
Barbuda in bringing this information to all
spheres of the public and members of civil
society. A far more important purpose of
the Trade Information System Database is
to stimulate much greater public
involvement or feedback on trade policy
and its many related issues, as well as to
supply relevant easily accessible
information to government agencies,
private sector and civil society at large in
Antigua and Barbuda.

In order to further facilitate the
civil society's access to this information, a
number of Trade Reference Centres will


be established in Antigua and
Barbuda, and will consist of a
computer containing the Trade
Information System Database. A
specific requirement of the
designated Trade Reference Centre
is that they are readily and easily
accessible to all civil society and
governmental users.

Hence, in the case of
Antigua and Barbuda, there are three
designated locations for the Trade
Reference Centres:

* The Antigua and Barbuda
Investment Bank (ABIB) 'The
Information Bank'
* The University of the West Indies
School of Continuing Studies
* The International Trade Division
of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

At this event there will be a
demonstration of the trade
information system database by
representatives of the Organization
of the American States (OAS). The
OAS representatives will be handing
over the computers and will be also
providing a limited number of CD
sets which would contain a mini-
version of the Caribbean Trade
Reference Centre to the Government
of Antigua and Barbuda.

Dr Mansoor concludes
COFCOR Meeting in
The Bahamas

Minister of Information,
Broadcasting and Communications
Dr Edmond Mansoor has described
the 8th Meeting of the Council for
Foreign and Community Relations
COFCOR, which concluded on 4th
June, as a success.

He said that among the
main items addressed was the
Region's approach to and


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GOVERNMENT NEW,

preparations for the 35th Meeting of the
General Assembly of the Organisation of
American States, being hosted by the
USA for the first time in 25 years and
scheduled for Fort Lauderdale this
weekend.

Dr Mansoor also noted that the
reform of the United Nations and what
the priority issues are for the Caribbean
at the upcoming 60th session of the UN
General Assembly, was also prominent
on the agenda.

"With regard to the reform of the
UN Security Council, the Council of
Foreign Ministers agreed that reform
should contemplate both the working
methods of the Council and its
expansion to ensure that it is open,
democratic and effective," Dr Mansoor
said.

"On expansion, the Council of
Ministers agreed that the UN's Security
council should be more broadly
representative of the international
community as a whole. Expansion of
both the permanent and non-permanent
categories of the Council would be
justifiable. In this regard, the Council
agreed that CARICOM would wish to see
increased accessibility for small states,"
he noted.

The Council of Ministers'
agenda also included an extensive
discussion on CARICOM's relations with
the USA. The Council of Ministers
agreed that CARICOM would engage
the Caribbean Diaspora, Congressional
Groupings and representatives of
departments and agencies of the US
government and the Chairman of the
Senate Foreign Relations Committee in
the effort to re-energise CARICOM-US
relations.


CARICOM's
Canada, the UK,
and France also
discussions.


relations with
Cuba, Brazil,
came up for


minister or Inormation, Broaccasting and
Communications, Dr. Edmund Mansoor

Dr Mansoor was accompanied to
the Bahamas by Permanent Secretary in
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ambassador
Colin Murdoch.

Dr Mansoor attends series of meetings
in Florida

On the 4th June Information,
Broadcasting and Communications
Minister Dr Edmond Mansoor represented
Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer at a
Business Roundtable of the Inter-American
Economic Council IAEC in Florida.

Governor of the State of Florida,
Jeb Bush inaugurated the Business
Roundtable along with the newly installed
Secretary-General of the Organisation of
American States, His Excellency Jose
Miguel Insulza.

Dr Mansoor noted that Antiguan
and Barbudan businessman, R. Allen
Stanford moderated a session on
"Strengthening the Relationship between
the US and the Caribbean Basin." He said
that speakers during that session included
Congressmen Donald Payne and Bob Ney
who both visited Antigua and Barbuda


recently and held discussions with
the government.

The Information Minister
said that other sessions focused on
"Investment and Trade in Latin
America", and "Is Latin America
Taking Advantage of the Digital
Divide?"

On the 5th June, Dr
Mansoor attended the inaugural
session of the OAS General
Assembly, which was preceded by
meetings with Permanent Observers
of the OAS and Civil Society
representatives.

On 6th June, Dr Mansoor
joined CARICOM Foreign Ministers
for a breakfast Meeting with the
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Canada,
Pierre Pettigrew. The agenda
included discussions on Haiti, the
International Policy Statements, and
Canada's continued assistance to
relief efforts after natural disasters.

The Minister and Antigua
and Barbuda's OAS Ambassador
Ms. Debra Mae Lovell also joined
their CARICOM colleagues in a
meeting with US Secretary of State
Dr Condeleezza Rice.

Dr Mansoor said that the
bilateral meeting with Dr. Rice raised
the need for regular structured
meetings between CARICOM and
the USA.

"A Conference on the
Caribbean was advanced by
CARICOM as it would help US
decision makers to better understand
the complexities and concerns of
CARICOM States. There were some
discussions of the possibility of this
occurring around the time of the
convening of the UN General
Assembly," Dr Mansoor noted.


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GOVERNMENT NEW,

He said that CARICOM
welcomed the Third Border Initiative and
advanced the notion of greater
collaboration with the US in activities that
are vital to the economies of the
Caribbean, particularly tourism and
security.

Other areas that were
discussed included the evolution of the
situation in Haiti and the Western
Hemisphere Travel Initiative which will
require all American citizens returning to
the USA to enter on a valid US travel
document.

Recent studies have confirmed
that a large percentage of visitors from
the USA to Caribbean holiday
destinations do so regularly and may not
have a US passport.

Dr Mansoor stated that
CARICOM is advancing that this new
policy be delayed until a common policy
is worked out with all of the USA's
neighbours.


Antiguan and Barbudan
re-elected President of
Human Rights Commission

Attorney at law and former
Independent Senator, Clare Roberts, of
Antigua and Barbuda was
overwhelmingly re-elected to the
Presidency of the Inter-American
Commission on Human Rights for
another four year.

Mr Clare Roberts received an
overwhelming endorsement from the
people of the Americas when he secured
the largest number of votes cast, thirty-
two of thirty-four, during an election for a
position on the Inter-American
Commission on Human Rights, an organ
of the Organization of American States
(OAS), created to promote the


president or te inter-American commission
on Human Rights, Clare Roberts

observance and protection of human rights
in the hemisphere.

The election was held on 7 June,
2005, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida at the
Thirty-Fifth Regular Session of the OAS
General Assembly. Mr Roberts received
the support of thirty two of the thirty four
member states of the OAS, defeating the
candidates from Uruguay, Bolivia,
Dominican Republic and Colombia.


PM Spencer inaugurates UK
Security Advisory Team
UKSAT for the Caribbean

On 9th June, Prime Minister
Baldwin Spencer inaugurated the United
Kingdom Security Advisory Team (UKSAT)
for the Caribbean during a ceremony at
Camp Blizzard.

UKSAT which will focus on
training, advice and mentoring of law
enforcement agencies and security forces
in the Caribbean to combat drug trafficking,
other serious crime and the threat of
terrorism in the region; will work in
partnership with the Regional Security
System RSS and the UK Caribbean
Overseas Territories COTs, supporting
their security initiatives to reduce the flow
of drugs, weapons and illegal migrants
through the region.


The Maritime Training Unit
MTU located at the Defence Force
Headquarters at Camp Blizzard,
formerly the British Military Advisory
Training Team, BMATT, will be
incorporated into UKSAT, and in
conjunction with the RSS Training
Unit will continue to provide training
and advice in support of a range of
maritime law enforcement activities
to the region.

During his address, Prime
Minister Spencer spoke on the issue
of receiving funding from the United
Kingdom and the USA to fight crime
within the region. He also addressed
the problems faced by countries
within the region as a result of the
high incidences of deportee
criminals.

The inauguration ceremony
was also addressed by the British
High Commissioner to Barbados and
the Eastern Caribbean His
Excellency Mr. John White.
Governor General Sir James Carlisle
was also in attendance.


Antigua and Barbuda
calls for unanimity in
application of tariffs

Antigua and Barbuda's
delegation at the 41st Meeting of the
Authority of the Organisation of
Eastern Caribbean States OECS,
has called for the unanimity in the
application of tariffs instead of
Quantitative Restrictions in the
administration of the regime.

Making an intervention on
Article 56 and 164 of the Revised
CARICOM Treaty which is up for
renewal after it expires on December
31, Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer
and Ambassador Dr Clarence Henry
told Heads that it is the government's


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GOVERNMENT NEW,

intention to request authorization to
pursue this course of action at the next
Council of Trade and Economic
Development COTED meeting.

It was pointed out that Antigua
and Barbuda supports the efforts of
Grenada which presented a paper on the
matter in Guyana recently on behalf of
the Lesser Developed Countries LDC's.

Antigua and Barbuda however
believes that the arguments supporting
its request for renewal of the provision,
would be strengthened by an empirical
study, and has therefore called on the
OECS Secretariat for support. It is
believed that the MDC's will oppose the
renewal of the provision.

Antigua and Barbuda says that
it believes that a study may show the
need to extend the current list of
protected industries especially the
identification of industries and products
in the Leeward Islands such as water,
UPVC window and doors, and stain
glass. Flour, water and natural gas are
among those items currently protected.

The Antigua and Barbuda
delegation pointed out that there could
be other industries and products, but the
hiring of a consultant to collate the data,
could then benefit from further reflections
by Member States in time for the next
COTED in October.

Tourism Minister elected
as the Chairman of the
CTO Board of Directors
Air Transportation
sub-committee.

Minister of Tourism Harold
Lovell has been elected to serve as
Chairman of a new sub-committee
established to look at the current
difficulties being faced regarding the
establishment of a regional airline.


Minister of Tourism Harold Lovell


Other Ministerial colleagues
comprising this board include the Minister
of Tourism in Grenada, Brenda Hood, the
Minister of Tourism in Barbados,Noel
Lynch and Mr. McHale Andrew, Research
and Development Consultant with the
Caribbean Regional Sustainable Tourism
Development Programme.

This development surfaced out of
the recently concluded 43rd meeting of the
Board of Directors of the Caribbean
Tourism Organization held at the New York
Hilton on June 2nd.

Minister Lovell, who is also the 2nd
Vice Chairman of the CTO Board of
Directors and Director for Governments,
says that he welcomes the opportunity to
represent Antigua and Barbuda once again
in such an esteemed capacity.

Antigua and Barbuda will once
again play a major role among the region's
policy makers and this time it is in the field
of aviation, for which I am also responsible
on the national scale," Minister Lovell
outlined. "I am honoured to have been
issued the mandate to lead a team
comprising of my regional colleagues to
develop policies that will steer one of the


critical components of the tourism
industry," he noted.

Also arising out of this
meeting was the selection of Mr.
Vincent Vanderpool-Wallace of the
Bahamas as the new Secretary
General of the Organization.
Vanderpool-Wallace takes over from
the Acting Secretary General Karen
Ford Warner.

During this forum the
Ministers and other tourism officials
were given an update on the
implementation of the Caribbean
Regional Sustainable Tourism
Development Programme of the 8th
European Development Fund, as
well as a report by CHL Consulting
LTD on institutional strengthening of
the CTO and the move towards a
new strategic direction.

The Caribbean Regional
Sustainable Tourism Development
Programme, is an EU funded 36
month program of assistance to the
Caribbean Tourism Organization, the
Caribbean Hotel Association, and the
Dominican Republic's Pontificia
Universidad Catolica Madre y
Maestra (PUCMM). The
programme's objective is to
contribute towards the tourism
sector's enhanced competitiveness
and increased sustainability, while
contributing significantly to economic
growth and poverty reduction in the
Caribbean.

The CTO Board of Directors
Meeting occurred during the annual
Caribbean Week festivities which
also facilitated a series of CTO
Ministers and Commissioners of
Tourism meetings.

Caribbean Week in New
York, is created by the CTO as a
celebration of sights, sounds,
colours, cultural delights, and
vibrancy of the Caribbean.


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GOVERNMENT NEWM


Minister Cort holds bilateral
discussions with
counterparts at UN
Ministerial Forum

Minister of Finance and the
Economy, Dr. Errol Cort recently held a
series of bilateral discussions with his
counterpart Ministers on the margins of
the United Nations General Assembly's
High-level Dialogue on Financing for
Development, which is a major gathering
for Ministers of Finance and of
Development Co-operation.

"I was able to accomplish a lot
in the relatively short period I spent at the
United Nations," said Minister Cort, who
in addition to addressing the General
Assembly as the head of the Antigua and
Barbuda delegation, undertook a
number bilateral consultations with his
counterparts on matters related to UN
reform and on economic development.

"I welcome in particular the
chance to discuss and explore


opportunities for economic development in
Antigua and Barbuda, particularly in the
area of infrastructure development, with
my counterparts from both developed and
developing countries," said the Minister,
who met with Ministers or senior
representatives from Brazil, India, Japan,
Germany and Italy.

Minister Cort also co-chaired a
Ministerial roundtable on external debt.



New members appointed
to Public Service
Commission

Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer
has appointed six new persons to fill the
vacant positions on the Public Service
Commission.

Retired Permanent Secretary,
Mrs Victorine George Alexander has been
named as the Chairperson, while Nurse
Ineta Wallace, former pilot Alec Tomlinson,
Attorney Alfred James, former civil servant
Myrna Richardson Smith and businessman


Phillip George-John has been named
as members.

The six join Mrs. Pauline
Daniel to make up the seven-
member Commission.

The new appointments
arose from the resignation of six
members of the Commission, some
of whom have served for over twenty
years under the Opposition Antigua
Labour Party administration.

Prime Minister Spencer
made the announcement after
consulting with the Leader of the
Opposition, Robin Yearwood.





Antigua and Barbuda
ready for hurricane
season

Antigua and Barbuda is fully
prepared for the 2005 Hurricane
Season, which began on Wednesday
1 st June and runs until November 30th.

Minister of Housing, Culture
and Social Transformation, Hilson
Baptiste, under whose portfolio the
National Office of Disaster Services
falls made the above statement.

Speaking at a press
conference in observance of Media
Awareness Week under the theme,
"Be Aware and Be Prepared'
Minister Baptiste said he's pleased
with the work of Director of NODS,
Mrs. Patricia Julian and her team. In
addition, the Minister said that not
withstanding the fact that the
finalized list of shelters are yet to be
published, the entire country's
response unit has been strengthened
through various training programmes
over the past few months.


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Minister of Finance and the Economy, Dr Errol Cort








GOVERNMENT NEWM
I h t M Il I I.. 11 i. 11 fi .


(left to right) Director of NODS Mrs Patricia
Julian, Minister Hilson Baptiste and Deputy
Director Philmore Mullin


Meantime, Mrs Julian asked for
the support of the media and said that
her department looks forward to working
with them during what is promised to be
an active hurricane season.

Deputy Director, Philmore
Mullin, said that once the public focuses
on early preparedness it could severely
reduce the overall impact on lives and
property.

"We are forever asking the
general public to focus on proper
preparedness and mitigation...I believe
that if we pay more attention to
mitigation I believe we will see a
reduction in the level of impact of natural
disasters."

During the press conference
Minister Baptiste told the media that his
government is seeking to construct
several community centres, which can
be used as hurricane shelters.

He said, "one of the things we
are focusing on is community centres,
which can also be used as hurricane
shelters; and we hope that these
shelters will become available for next
year's hurricane season."



a,490~


Antigua and Barbuda and
Guadeloupe to forge
cultural relationship

Antigua and Barbuda is
, seeking to forge a closer relationship
- with Guadeloupe.

S The initiation was made in
early June when Cultural Attache in
the French Embassy of the OECS, Mr.
Philippe Girerd, paid a courtesy call on
Minister of State in the Ministry of
Housing, Culture and Social
Transformation, Eleston Adams and
Minister of Housing, Culture and Social
Transformation, Hilson Baptiste.

Mr. Girerd, said that his
Government is seeking to establish
training opportunities for Antiguan and
Barbudan dancers, in a bid to pull
together dancers from across the region
to perform on one stage, all at the same
time.

The Ministers were also
informed of plans to divide the
Caribbean into zones where they will
focus on music, drama, theatre and
cinema. Both ministers were invited to
the special launch to be held in Santo
Domingo in January of 2006.

The Ministers expressed their
optimism with the projects and








rz4 I


Cultural Attache in the French Embassy of the
OECS, Philippe Girerd (right). At left is
Cultural Attache Gilbert Laudat


welcomed the initiative by the
Government of Guadeloupe.

The relations with Guadeloupe
began with the establishment of the
Cultural Internet Cafe that was launched
earlier this year at the Cultural
Department.

Planning for 2005
Independence celebrations
underway

The National Independence
Steering Committee has commenced
plans for celebration of the country's 24th
Anniversary of political independence.

In his opening remarks at the
first meeting on June 2nd, Minister of
State in the Ministry of Housing, Culture
and Social Transformation and Steering
Committee Chairman, Eleston Adams,
urged members to participate fully and
creatively to ensure this year's
celebrations surpass the standards set
during 2004.

During the meeting, several
ideas were discussed for the week-long
Independence programme, and
recommendations sought for ways of
improving the celebrations in
anticipation of next year's 25th
anniversary.

The Independence
Homecoming theme which was
introduced in 2004: "Antigua and
Barbuda One Family" will remain
the constant slogan for the next few
years, with a new sub-theme added
each year. Consequently, members of
the public are invited to submit ideas for
the 2005 sub-theme.

The phrase must be around ten
words, must be catchy and easily
Remembered, and must reflect some
aspect of positive national
development.


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NATIONALS' CORNER


%q/f


A HISTORY OF ANTIGUA:
THE UNSUSPECTED ISLE.

This book, written by Brian Dyde
and published by Macmillan Education in
2000, not only covers the history of
Antigua from pre-Columbian days until
the achievement of Independence in 1981
but also deals with events over the same
period in both Barbuda and Redonda.

The author is an Englishman
who, having known the island for over 40
years and being married to an Antiguan,
has taken great care to treat what could
be thought of as potentially dry historical
material from a balanced cultural
perspective and to write for the widest
possible readership.

His 360-page book covers the
pre-Columbian migrations, colonialism,
slavery and the plantation economy, the
rise of the trade union movement,
Associated Statehood, Independence,
and the transition from an agricultural to
a tourist economy in an interesting and
highly-readable manner. As well as being
illustrated with maps, reproductions of
paintings and prints, and many
photographs, the text also contains
numerous apt contemporary quotations
from each significant period of Antigua's
history. It is a book which will appeal to
anyone with any connection with Antigua,
or with an interest in West Indian history.

The author has also written the
definitive visitor's guide to Antigua (now
in its third edition) as well as a history of
the West India Regiments.

His book, ISBN number 0 333
75169 8, is available from any good
bookshop, priced at 17.95


CALYPSO TENT EXCELS


It's virtually impossible to
conceive of a UK calypso event more
authentic than the one the Yaa Asantewaa
produces each year.

Since the ABC (Association of
British Calypsonians) created the London
Calypso tent thirteen years ago, the shows
have never been more sought after. It has
developed into the eagerly anticipated pre-
cursor to the Notting Hill Carnival show,
attracting around 300 people per night and
serves as a flagship to Caribbean culture
and sound.

The show promises to not only
excite but also inspire since its format is
exactly as one would expect from a calypso
tent in the Caribbean. With the sultry,
message based lyrics of social commentary
to the faced paced rhythm of soca songs
everyone is guaranteed a memorable time.

Whilst savouring traditional West
Indian food and drink, viewers can expect to
see artistes representing most of the
Caribbean islands including Barbados, St
Vincent and Jamaica to name a few.
Everyone will even be treated to the likes of
Explainer, a renowned calypsonian hailing
from Trinidad whose music has been
entertaining for over 30 decades. Parents
need not worry about restless children as
the Junior Calypso monarch from Trinidad
also appears. Her talent is undeniable as at
the tender age of eight she has already won
several awards such as the Best Primary
School performer and TUCO Junior Calypso
Monarch.

The Tent takes place for six weeks
during the months of July and August and
is held at the Yaa Asantewaa Arts &
Community Centre, 1 Chippenham Mews,
Chippenham Road, London W9.2AN.

Dates: 29th July, 5th August,
12th August, 19th August,
25th August, 26th August.

For more info and a chance to win
tickets visit www.londoncalypsotent.co.uk.

This is a must see event. To avoid
disappointment tickets should be booked
early.


Antigua and Barbuda
makes case for
community whaling

Antigua and Barbuda made
its voice heard at the 57th annual
meeting of the International Whaling
Commission which concluded in
Ulsan South Korea on Friday 24
June.

During the meeting
Ambassador Anthony Liverpool,
Antigua and Barbuda's Whaling
Commissioner urged members of the
Commission to respect the tradition
of whale consumption among
communities whose heritage and
cultural habits are dependent on
whaling.

"The people of Taiji in
Japan who have a long tradition of
over four hundred years of whaling,
are very much distressed that the
IWC for the past ten years have
denied them the right to continue
their cultural tradition and to utilize
whales for both economic and
subsistence purposes," the
Ambassador said.

He argued that some
members of the Commission lack the
respect for cultural traditions and fail
to accept the position of coastal
communities and small island states
to utilize whales for food. "It is no
secret that communities in countries
like St. Vincent and the Grenadines,
Norway, Iceland, Greenland and
Japan, have been hunting and eating
whales for generations. This failure
on the part of some developing
countries to support the proposal by
Japan for small type coastal whaling
is about 'big countries' trying to
direct, dictate and determine how
people in smaller countries should
live."


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GOVERNMENT NEW


I

Antigua and Barbuda's delegation to the IWC meeting in South Korea. (I to r) Tricia
Lovell, Ambassador Colin Murdoch, Minister Joanne Massiah and Ambassador Liverpool


The IWC which has a
membership of approximately 66
countries, is deeply divided between pro
and anti whaling countries with strong
positions on issues relating to the
establishment of a Revised
Management Scheme designed to
monitor the proper utilization of whale
stocks, the establishment of
sanctuaries, without any reliable
scientific support, the issuing of
scientific permits, for research,
introduction of simultaneous translation
and the reduction in the contribution
fees to IWC for countries like Antigua
and Barbuda.

Minister Massiah who attended
the Meeting along with Ambassador to
the IWC Anthony Liverpool,
Ambassador Colin Murdoch and
Fisheries Officer Tricia Lovell, said that
the Commissioners further highlighted
that the establishment of an open
equitable and functioning Revised
Management Scheme (RMS) will help to
pull the organisation back from the brink
of irrelevance and place it firmly on the
path to effective management of an
important resource.


"There is no longer significant
disagreement in scientific opinion that
the population of some species of
whales have rebounded sufficiently to
allow for sustainable harvesting. The
RMS can establish such a regime, one
that is equitable, transparent and based
on the precautionary principle," she said

More work on liberalization

Efforts on ways to reduce
tariffs continued as CARICOM trade
officials met in Trinidad, June 15-17 to
discuss formulas and market access
opportunities ahead of the General
Council slated for the end of July.

Developing countries,
including all of CARICOM, want to
ensure that there is clear language that
"less than full reciprocity" and their
flexibility are not traded off against each
other and should remain as separate
entities. This would preserve the policy
space created for small economies to
further assist in the economic
development of each developing nation.

Small economies, including
Antigua and Barbuda, cannot afford to


reduce their tariffs to accommodate the
liberalization approach without due
compensation. Tariffs are vital to the
development and growth of this twin
island state, whereby the revenues
collected are utilized for infrastructure,
health and educational means. With any
reduction, developing nations must
adopt measures to lessen the burden, or
compensate for the foreseen losses.

Trade Affairs Officer, Michael
Freeland, made claims that the
Caribbean countries were more lenient
to the Argentina, Brazil, India formula,
otherwise known as the ABI formula.
"This is not as severe as the US or EC
proposals which seek to cut high tariffs
by more than 50% and low tariffs by
10% or less. Developing countries, like
CARICOM, have average tariffs bound
at 56 %, while developed and larger
developing countries binds at an
average of 8%. If smaller countries opt
for another formula other than the ABI, it
would mean giving up vast amounts of
revenue and significant policy space for
future rounds of negotiations."


Trade Affairs Officer,
Michael Freeland


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GOVERNMENT NEW

"However, what the conference
was not aware of was a draft proposal,
ultimately aimed at being the
CARICOM-Botswana formula for tariff
reduction. This formula encapsulates all
the sensitivities of preferences,
vulnerabilities from tariff revenue loss,
debt problems and the need to maintain
tariffs for that purpose, and openness."
"It goes a step further than the ABI
formula supporting a non-linear formula
which has credits and uses average
tariffs," he said.

As this debate rages on, OECS
member states must ensure that any
formula brought into play must address
their relative concerns. These countries
will have an opportunity to further
discuss the proposals, and agree in
principle to a formula that will
adequately suit their needs when they
meet in St. Lucia at the end of the week.

A Special Meeting of OECS
Ministers of Trade and Trade Officials of
the Trade Negotiation Group (TNG) has
been summoned for the purpose of
considering and advising the OECS
Heads of Government ahead of the
Conference of Heads of Government of
CARICOM in St. Lucia in early July.

Consultation on CARICOM
Financial Services and
Investment Agreements
and CARICOM Investment
Code held in Antigua

On the 27th June the Ministry
of Finance and the Economy (Industry &
Commerce) in collaboration with the
CARICOM Secretariat hosted a
consultation on the CARICOM Financial
Services Agreement, the CARICOM
Investment Agreement and the
CARICOM Investment Code at the
Multipurpose Cultural Centre.
The CARICOM Secretariat has
prepared these three draft


intergovernmental
instruments to address the
provision of financial
services and to govern the
treatment and promotion of
investment by nationals of
the Community as well as
investors from third states.
Additionally, these
agreements give effect to
the broad policies
elaborated in Chapter
Three of the Revised
Treaty of Chaguaramas.

The Draft
CARICOM Financial Deputy P
Services Agreement is PETRO
designed to facilitate intra-
regional operations and delivery of
banking, insurance and securities
services.

On the other hand, the Draft
CARICOM Agreement on Investment is
a comprehensive legal instrument that is
intended to operationlise the broad
investment policy framework that is
contained in Chapter Three of the
Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas.

The purpose of the consultation
was to involve the relevant stakeholders
at the policy-making, regulatory,
promotional, industrial and non-
governmental levels. Essentially, this
session ensured that the views of the
national stakeholders were reflected in
Antigua and Barbuda's comments on the
agreements, which will be inputted in the
final draft of these agreements.

Antigua and Barbuda signs
PETROCARIBE Energy
Co-operation

After years of failing to
capitalize on the opportunity to
participate in preferential trade
agreements designed to reduce the
price of fuel for consumers, Antigua and


'rime Minister Wilmoth Daniel signs the
CARIBE Energy Co-operation Agreement

Barbuda is now poised to benefit from
the region's newest energy cooperation
agreement. On June 29th Deputy Prime
Minister Wilmoth Daniel joined
Venezuela and twelve other Caribbean
Countries in signing the
PETROCARIBE Energy Cooperation
Agreement.

Under the terms of this
Agreement the Bolivarian Republic of
Venezuela and the Caribbean territories
which are signatories to the Agreement
will establish a Ministerial Council
formed by the Ministers of Energy or
their equivalents. This Council will
constitute the institutional platform while
the operating aspects of the Agreement
will be handled by PDV Caribbean, an
affiliate of Petroleos de Venezuela
(PDVSA).

PDV Caribbean will be vested
with adequate cargo capacity to enable
it to deliver fuel supplies to the
signatories to the Agreement. The
signatories will benefit from savings
since the freight expenses will be
charged at cost price, and all
intermediaries in the supply process will
be eliminated. Further, the Agreement
provides an opportunity to access both


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GOVERNMENT NEWS

short-term and long-term financing for
the purchase of fuel from Venezuela.
The interest rate for such financing is set
at 1% with a 2 year grace period and an
overall repayment period of 17 to 25
years.

The percentage of the price that
can be financed varies with the price per
barrel of fuel and begins at a low of 5%
and may reach a high of 50% if the price
per barrel exceeds $100. At the current
price, 40% financing would apply.

The PETROCARIBE
Agreement also makes provision for the
establishment of a fund dedicated to the
social and economic development of
beneficiary countries. The ALBA-Caribe
Fund has been activated with an initial
deposit of US$50 million from Venezuela.

While in Venezuela, the
Antiguan Delegation which included
Ambassador Joan Underwood and
Technical Advisors Dr. George Daniel
and Dr. Percival Perry, also engaged in
bilateral negotiations with their
Venezuelan counterparts. As a result of
these negotiations, Venezuela has
pledged to provide technical assistance
in a number of areas including measures
designed to improve the efficiency of the
country's electrical supply.

Antigua and Barbuda World
Cup Cricket Stadium
drawings ready for
September construction
start

On the 25th June the
architectural drawings for the Sir Vivian
Richards Cricket Stadium were formally
agreed to in the city of Changsha, Hunan
Province, China.

The China Hunan Architectural
Design Institute (CHADI), one of the top
architectural design enterprises in China
was contracted by the Government of


the Peoples' Republic of China to design
the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium.
The final drawings are a product of
intensive discussions and interactions
over the past 6 months between the
staffs of CHADI and World Cup Antigua
(WCA) Inc. along with technicians from
the Ministry of Public Works and the
Antigua Public Utilities Authority.

Ambassador David Shoul, Non-
Resident Ambassador to the Peoples'
Republic of China, formally signed the
agreement signifying acceptance of the
architectural drawings by the
Government of Antigua and Barbuda in a
ceremony marking the end of a week of
hectic activity which had technicians
from Antigua and Barbuda and China
working virtually non-stop to ensure that
the drawings were completed on
schedule.

During the ceremony praise
was lavished on the technicians from
both countries for their dedication and
professionalism in ensuring that the final
product was of the highest standard and
consistent with the stipulated guidelines


laid down by the International Cricket
Council (ICC) for the venues that will
host matches during ICC Cricket World
Cup 2007.

The acceptance of the
architectural drawings now clears the
way for the Government of the
Peoples' Republic of China to contract
the construction company which will
build the stadium. Actual construction
of the stadium will commence with an
official ground-breaking and turning-of-
the-sod ceremony scheduled for the
second week of September 2005.
Officials from the Government of the
Peoples' Republic of China and CHADI
will participate in this ceremony.

Ambassador Shoul headed
the delegation which comprised
George Goodwin Jr. and Sheon
Samuel, Managing Director and the
Venue Development Co-ordinator
respectively of World Cup Antigua;
Wesley James, an architect attached to
the Ministry of Public Works; and Victor
Meade, an engineer with the Antigua
Public Utilities Authority.


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Ambassador David Shoul


S .--" ...




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