Group Title: Official newsletter of the Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Title: Official newsletter
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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: April/May 2006
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NE


;TER


The Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
ISSUE No. 109 April 15th May 2006


Prime Minister the Honourable Baldwin Spencer has
called the 3rd CARICOM-Spain Summit held in Madrid, Spain
a success.

The country's leader said that of importance in the
Joint Declaration which he signed, was the commitment
made by Spain to collaborate with CARICOM in its efforts to
advance its regional integration mechanisms, in particular the
full entry into the CARICOM Single Market.


"Spain will give support in exchanging of
experiences it garnered during its entry into the European
Union and it will also offer collaboration to CARICOM to Heads at te CARICOM-Spain Summt
achieve the establishment of the CARICOM Regional
Development Fund which complements the operations of the Common Market, Prime Minister Spencer said.

He also pointed out that both sides expressed pleasure in the recent elections held in Haiti and committed
themselves to supporting Haiti's return to full democratic institutional normality, and its complete re-incorporation within
CARICOM. "Both parties will jointly explore the possibility of collaborating on projects to achieve that goal. We also
underlined the need for the continuing financial and other forms of support from the international community to
consolidate the democratic gains made and to ensure the political and economic stabilization of Haiti," he said.

He stated that agreements were reached on the increase in trade and investment exchanges, the expansion of
Spain development in tourism in the region and Spain contributing to the Special Development Fund of the Caribbean
Development Bank as a first step towards becoming a member of that institution.

Prime Minister Spencer also attended the European Union Latin America and Caribbean (EU-LAC) Summit
which was held in Vienna, Austria.


Inside

* Mount St John Medical Centre Loan Agreement
completed (page 4)
Antigua and Barbuda offers facility for PetroCaribe
initiative (page 71
Government invests USS6M in LIAT page 9)
Antigua and Barbuda receives CARICOM
support on Internet Gaming Dispute
with US (page 11)


On 12th May, the Prime Minister and other members of his
delegation participated in Round Table discussions with regional
and international leaders lead by Federal Chancellor of Austria
Wolfgang Schussel and Federal Minister of Foreign Affairs Ursula
Plassnik.

Before the Summit ended, Prime Minister Spencer held
bilateral meetings with the leaders of Guatemala, Turkey and
Venezuela.


2nd floor, 45 Crawford Place, London W1H 4LP


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A MESSAGE FROM HIS EXCELLENCY

DR CARL ROBERTS, HIGH COMMISSIONER


My Dear Readers,


This is the first of several reports which I hope to make to
you on our activities at the High Commission, especially
concerning the representation which this mission makes on your
behalf

Recently I was a member of the Prime Minister's
delegation attending the fifth UK/Caribbean Forum, which took
place from 26 28th April 2006 in Bridgetown, Barbados.

This is a biennial event, which alternates between the UK
and the Caribbean and is a great opportunity for Britain and the
English-speaking Caribbean to discuss issues of mutual concem.

Opening Remarks were made by the Prime Minister of
Barbados, the Rt. Hon Owen S. Arthur, by Hon Elvin Nimrod, on
behalf of the Council for Foreign and Community Relations
(COFCOR) and by Lord Triesman, on behalf of the UK.

The Forum was held under the theme "Partnerships for
Promoting and Sustaining Caribbean Development". It focused
on strategies to achieve medium and long-term development for
the Caribbean as well as security issues, including those related to
preparations for the Cricket World Cup in 2007. In addition to the
Open Sessions, Ministers met in Retreat and held frank, cordial
discussions on a range of issues.

MEDIUM AND LONG TERM ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
For medium and long term economic development it was
agreed to undertake concrete action to improve the capacity of the
public sector to provide affordable and efficient services to their
populations. Tackling public debt and strengthening public financial
management systems were priority actions in this regard,
acknowledging also that achieving this commitment would not be
easy. Ministers acknowledged the important role that the Diaspora


can play in the economic and social development of the Caribbean
and noted the efforts of the Caribbean Governments to engage the
Diaspora fully towards this end.

INVESTMENT ISSUES
In order to attract greater levels of both domestic and
foreign investments there is an urgent need for continued
improvements in the investment climate and the emphasis placed
on investing in human resources as a key to attracting investment.
The British Prime Minister's initiative to hold an investment event
in London in November 2006 with the objective of showcasing the
Caribbean to potential investors was therefore welcomed.

The work of the OECD's Global Forum on Harmful Tax
Practices showed that progress had already been made towards a
global level playing field in the areas of transparency and effective
exchange of information in tax matters. We now look forward to the
publication of the Level Playing Field Report, which would provide
a factual assessment of where the OECD and non-OECD
jurisdictions are in relation to the OECD standards for transparency
and information exchange.

TOURISM
The vital importance of the tourist industry to the further
economic development of the Caribbean was recognized. Ministers
undertook to carry out a number of specific actions aimed at
expanding the tourist industry in the Region, and ensuring that an
increasing percentage of earnings from tourism remained in the
Region. They welcomed the first steps which had been taken to
develop a Regional Tourism Investment Fund (RTIF), and agreed
to continue to support this initiative.

CRICKET WORLD CUP 2007
Ministers agreed that Cricket World Cup (CWC 2007)
preparations meshed closely with and are contributing to the
emerging collective security capability of the Region as is being
promoted under the CARICOM/UK Security Cooperation Plan. For
an event of this scale regional coordination is essential to ensure
that security is in no way compromised by facilitating quick and
easy movement of a large volume of persons and goods across the
Region. They welcomed the steps already taken including the
CARICOM political leadership provided by the establishment of the
Ad Hoc Ministerial Sub Committee for Security Issues pertaining to
CWC 2007 and the identification of CWC 2007 security
coordination as a priority activity for the Implementation Agency for
Crime and Security (IMPACS)

Among other things, the UK agreed to support CARICOM
in the roll-out of its common visa arrangements for the period of the
CWC 2007 and to address urgently the question of assisting in the
issuance of such visas in countries where CARICOM is not
represented. (Excerpts from CARICOM Communique)

I trust that you find this report useful and welcome any
comments which you might have.
Dr Carl Roberts
High Commissioner








W Iu N 1 pi


Government, Private
Sector and USAID join
forces for trade programme

Senior government and private
sector officials from Antigua and
Barbuda and representatives from the
United States Agency for International
Development (USAID), have teamed up
to form a special Partners Working
Group as part of a broader four-year
open trade programme, funded by
SAID.

The Caribbean Open Trade
Support (COTS) programme, currently
operates in Antigua and Barbuda and in
Dominica as pilot programmes for the
region. It is assisting both islands to
transition from traditional trading regimes
to open trade, and compete more
successfully in the global economy. The
programme is also assisting to
strengthen Antigua's overall business
environment and enhance the working
relationship between the private and
public sectors.

The establishment of the
Partners Working Group is a major part
of the success of the COTS Programme.
The group brings together in one forum
the expertise of top key private and
public sector figures to guide the
implementation of the programme.
Members include Ambassador Dr.
Clarence Henry, Development
Coordinator, the Ministry of Finance and
the Economy; Mr. Cordell Weston,
Permanent Secretary, the Ministry of
Finance and the Economy; Mr. Philmore
Mullin, Deputy Director, National Office
of Disaster Services; Ms. Holly Peters,
Executive Director, Antigua and Barbuda
Chamber of Commerce; and Mr.
Lawrence King, President, Antigua and
Barbuda Small Business Association.

The Group expressed
satisfaction with the activities
implemented to date under the COTS


programme. Twenty four tax officials from
the Inland Revenue Department (IRD), for
example, have been trained on customer
service techniques. Additionally, a
comprehensive tax guide and manuals
have been developed for use by IRD staff.
This training prepares IRD staff to provide
high quality assistance to the general
public during tax season, given this is the
first time many Antiguans are filing
personal tax returns.

A detailed analysis was
undertaken by COTS of the cost to
Antigua's consumers and business
community to continue to support the
inclusion of wheat and meslin flour on the
list of protected items under Article 164 of
the Treaty of Chaguaramas. The
Government of Antigua and Barbuda is
using the results of this analysis to
negotiate a position to allow flour from
some of the More Developed Countries
(MDC) of CARICOM to be imported into
Antigua and Barbuda. Consumers will
benefit from lower prices on flour and flour
based products, such as bread.

With the programme's
assistance, the Ministry of Finance and the
Economy has published its second
magazine dedicated to the Caribbean
Single Market and Economy (CSME). The
Magazine will be disseminated throughout
Antigua and Barbuda and presents the
public with information on the CSME and
the associated benefits and opportunities.

Working under the following five
themes: Governance, Public Private
Interface, Doing Business, Resilience to
Natural Disasters, and Public Awareness,
the COTS programme will continue to
strengthen both the public and private
sector efforts to make Antigua and
Barbuda more competitive in the region
and globally. The ultimate and long term
vision of the COTS programme is that
through these targeted activities the
business environment will flourish and the
standard of life of Antiguans and
Barbudans will be significantly improved.


Chinese team reviews
Antigua's electricity
generation capacity

The Government of the
People's Republic of China has
expressed an interest in assisting
Antigua and Barbuda in meeting its
electricity generation capacity.

A two man team from the
Beijing Construction and Engineering
Corporation recently held high level
talks with Minister of APUA, Wilmoth
Daniel, Antigua and Barbuda's
Ambassador to China H.E. Sir David
Shoul and managers of the Antigua
Public Utilities Authority (APUA).

General Manager of the
Beijing Construction and Engineering
Corporation Mr. Yang Qin who was
accompanied by his Deputy Mr. Xing
Yan, said that their visit to Antigua
was as a result of discussions held
between Ambassador Shoul and
China's Minister of Construction who
recently visited the country in
December.

He said that they had specific
instructions to assess the generation
capacity conditions of Antigua and
Barbuda and report back to the gov-
ernment of China in order to facilitate
medium and long term solutions to
the various problems affecting APUA.

As part of their mission, the
Chinese team visited the Crabbs
Power Station and the Sub-Station at
Belmont. Meetings were also held
with General Manager Leon
Symister, Electricity Manager Lindon
Francis, Planning Minister Milton
Pringle, Finance Manager Esworth
Martin and Transmission and
Distribution engineers Reuben
Barnard and Ernest George.


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NI Iu N 1 A i


"The


Depmty Prime Minster and Minister
Wilmo/ Danelk Amlassador S4ou/an
ofAPUA meet miti Cinese te

Minister Daniel said that the
meetings with the officials were very
fruitful and he is confident that the
assistance the Chinese Government is
seeking to provide will significantly
enhance the overall generation capacity
of APUA.


Chinese


Government has
demonstrated once
again that they are
true friends of Antigua
and Barbuda and we
are grateful that they
are willing to share
their expertise and
resources with us. We
are indeed proud to
rO/APUA have friends like
dManlagers China," Minister
Wam Daniel stated.


Ambassador Shoul, who
arranged the meeting, said that the
Chinese, who have a proven track
record in electricity generation, were
very happy to accept our request for
assistance. They are committed to
assisting the government in meeting the
energy needs of the country.


Tickets for All

Cricket fans will be spoilt for choice when they apply for tickets for ICC CWC
2007. Fans are being offered an opportunity to select from a Single Ticket to Tickets that
will take them from the Group Stage to the Final.

"This range caters for all, from the serious cricket fan to the people who just like
to be where the action is. In Antigua and Barbuda, our tickets will cost US$100 for
Category One, US$75 for Category Two, US$25 for Category Three and US$90 for Beach
366, the Party Stand. Everyone who want to attend has an equal opportunity when
applying for tickets from May 1st on-line or May 2nd at our official Ticket Office on the
corner of Long Street and Independence Avenue" says Martin Cave, Cricket Operations
Manager World Cup Antigua Inc. ICC CWC 2007 Local Organising Committee.

Cave adds that: "People should not be concerned about the application process.
It is just filling in an application form, making payment and getting a receipt. Cricket fans
here in Antigua and Barbuda can apply for any game they wish to see, not just here at the
Sir Vivian Richards Stadium but at the other host venues. This process is the fairest and
most equitable way for fans to access tickets. Many of the features being put in place,
including the issuing of tickets during Phase Three are to prohibit counterfeiters and
scalpers from selling non-valid tickets to unsuspecting fans. It is important to remind our
cricket fans that there are only two official locations to apply for tickets, either on line
from www.cricketworldcup.com or from our Ticket Office located on the corner of Long
Street and Independence Avenue."

For more information contact: Martin Cave, Cricket Operations Manager, World Cup
Antigua Inc., ICC CWC 2007 Local Organising Committee, and Tel: 268 562 9224/9227.


The Chinese team is expected
back in the country later this year on a
follow-up visit.


Mount St. John Medical
Centre loan agreement
completed

The Government of Antigua
and Barbuda has completed
negotiations with the China Exim Bank
for the new loan arrangements to
complete construction work on the
Mount St. John Medical Centre.

Antigua and Barbuda's
Ambassador to the People's Republic of
China, who negotiated the new loan
arrangements, said that the principals of
the China Exim Bank sent a team to
Antigua to finalize the loan agreement
and this was mostly due to the excellent
relationship the government has with the
People's Republic of China.

Ambassador Shoul who made
preliminary arrangements for the new
agreement with the Chinese
Ambassador here Madam Ren Xioping,
said that the loan agreement was
temporarily held up because of
outstanding arrears the government had
with the Exim Bank for the 69 KV Phase
II Upgrade at APUA. Government
ceased paying the loan in 2003,
accumulating arrears of 12 million RMB.

During the recent negotiations,
Ambassador Shoul said that the
government rescheduled the loan and
secured a reduction in the interest rate
from 4% to 2 %. The loan was also
cleared.

The $8 million loan for the
Mount St. John Medical Centre was
negotiated with a moratorium of 5 years
and repayment over twenty years.


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Is No 1 A i


The new loan will facilitate the
completion of construction of the Mount
St. John Medical Centre, before
government enters into management
arrangements with International health
care providers.

The Exim Bank officials also
held discussions with the Finance
Minister Dr. Errol Cort, Financial
Secretary Whitfield Harris, Budget
Director David Matthias, Health Minister
John Maginley, APUA Management and
Finance teams and Ambassador David
Shoul.

Germany seeks Antigua
and Barbuda's support for
UN position

German Ambassador Dr.
Helmut Ohlraun visited Antigua and
Barbuda to meet with Prime Minister
Baldwin Spencer to lobby for Germany's
candidacy for the United Nations Human
Rights Council.

Ambassador Ohlraun is based
in Port-of-Spain Trinidad and is
Germany's representative to the Eastern
Caribbean countries and to the
CARICOM Secretariat.

Both men discussed the
regional situation especially the
implementation of the CARICOM Single
Market and Economy. Ambassador
Ohlraun emphasized that Germany saw
CARICOM as the leading regional
organization which can prepare regional
states for trade liberalization. The
German Ambassador explained that
almost all German development
assistance went to CARICOM for
regional projects.

PM Spencer called on
Germany not to forego the bilateral
partnership completely, but to have both
the regional and bilateral working side by
side.


Frme M ister Balolmn spencer aino ermant Amoassaoor Dr Heimut utiramu
dunAfig tdeir discussing


Both men also discussed the
development of Antigua and Barbuda's
Merchant Shipping International Register
and the appointment of an Antigua and
Barbuda Honorary Consul in Hamburg
Germany.

Germany is one of nine European
countries seeking a seat on the UN Human
Rights Council, and Ambassador Ohlraun
asked for Antigua and Barbuda's vote to
allow Germany to be on the HRC. He
emphasized Germany's human rights
record.

PM Spencer explained that it was
CARICOM's policy to achieve regional
consensus on this and other candidates,
and that CARICOM Foreign Ministers
would discuss these matters later this
month and agree on a slate of candidates
that they would support.

Dr. Ohlraun described the new
structure of the United Nations Human
Rights Council and explained the built-in
safeguards. He stated that Germany was
satisfied with how the new Council was
structured.

PM Spencer explained that it was
likely that CARICOM would also have a
candidate for the HRC and that, should


CARICOM Foreign Ministers agree,
there would be reciprocal support.

The recently concluded
EU/LAC summit was also discussed
as well as the slate of upcoming
regional and international meetings.


UK firm to conduct study
of Antigua and Barbuda
education sector

Cambridge Education
limited, a United Kingdom
consultancy firm, has won the tender
to undertake a broad based
European Union funded education
sector study for Antigua and
Barbuda.

Making the disclosure
Ambassador Dr. Clarence Henry, the
National Authorizing Officer, for the
European Development Fund (EDF)
programme expressed satisfaction


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Is No 1 A i


Among the objectives of the
study is the preparation of an education
sector plan that will provide a road map
for the delivery of a coherent, integrated
and high quality educational service now
and into the future.

"The expectation is that the
plan will be suitable for use on a national
level as well as for the purpose of
accessing external financing and should
focus on strengthening institutional
capacity, improving access to quality of
education at all levels", according to
Ambassador Henry.

Of particular importance, he
said, will be the production of a work plan
for the amalgamation of the three public
tertiary education institutions Antigua
State College, Antigua and Barbuda
Hospitality Training Institute and the
Antigua and Barbuda International
Institute of Technology.

"The consultancy will be
required to review existing policies and
standards regarding tertiary education,
effective delivery of the curriculum,
minimum facilities required for the
executive of this task, structure of the
tertiary education system, the number
and locations of new departments
required at the tertiary level, and design
of a 16 month work programme to
culminate in the amalgamation of the
three public tertiary institutions", he said.

Other aspects of the study
includes recommendations on the
organizational structure at all levels,
staffing needs and training programmes,
Faculty Manual, Draft Legislation to
govern the institution, Course Structure
and Sales and Marketing Plan.

During the execution of the
study, the consultants are expected to
organise a series of stakeholder
meetings, as well as a workshop at the
Draft Final Report stage in collaboration
with the Ministry of Education to discuss


major findings arising from the review of
the sector.

The framework consultancy is
being financed under the Technical
Cooperation Facility (TCF). Cambridge
Education is also executing the EU project
designed to strengthen Technical and
Vocational Education and Training (TVET)
in Antigua and Barbuda which involves
infra-structural expansion, procurement of
equipment and capacity building at the
Tomlinson campus of the Antigua and
Barbuda Institute of Continuing Education
(ABICE) as well as refurbishment of the
engineering workshop at the ASC.

Antigua and Barbuda
Treasury Bills over-
subscribed once again on
the Regional Government
Securities Market (RGSM)

The Antigua and Barbuda
Government continues to yield much
success and support as it makes its
second showing on the Regional
Government Securities Market (RGSM).

On April 19, 2006 the
Government returned to the RGSM to
issue another EC$17million in treasury
bills.

At the close of the market it was
revealed that the issue was once again
over subscribed by some $5.3 million with
subscriptions totalling $23.3 million.

It was reported that investments
were received from institutional investors
and individuals from Antigua and Barbuda,
across the region and North America.

The bids ranged from $5000 to
$12.6 million with interest rates starting
from 4.5% to 6.5%.

An ecstatic Finance and
Economy Minister, Dr. Errol Cort, said the


over-subscription was great news for
the people of Antigua and Barbuda
and this again confirms the
confidence the people have in the
Baldwin Spencer Administration.

Dr. Cort expressed sincere
gratitude to the investors especially
the many local investors who
continue to demonstrate their trust in
the government and the country's
economy.

The Finance Minister added
that as the government continues
with its reform programme as it seeks
to transform the economy, he is
anticipating that the people's
momentum will persist.

The government has
already started using the resources
gained from the first tranche of
treasury bills to pay out high interest
debts which as a result, has
produced some 400 thousand dollars
per month in savings. Hence, the
funds from this second tranche will
be used to continue this process.
Additionally, the monies from the
treasury bills will also be used to pay
the voluntary separation and
retirement packages to public sector
workers, while, funds will also be
allocated to facilitate various
infrastructural programmes to be
undertaken by the government.

Dr. Cort concluded his
remarks by commending the staff of
the ABI Group and the Ministry of
Finance for their hard work and
dedication "since the success of the
government with the second tranche
is ultimately the success of all
Antiguans and Barbudans".

Manager of the Investment
Department of the ABI Bank Ltd. Mr.
Casroy James said his company will
continue to lend its support to the
Government of Antigua and Barbuda
as it seeks to enhance the economy


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No III Apri 111


and the ABI Group will continue to inform
the public as the need arises.

Any investor who buys treasury
bills will after 91 days be repaid the
investment plus the interest on that
investment and then it is up to that
investor if they want to go back into the
market and re-invest in the securities of
the government of Antigua and Barbuda.

For further information on the issuance
of Government of Antigua and Barbuda securities,
please contact the Ministry of Finance and the
Economy at telephone (268) 562-5261 or email
Antigua.tbills@hgmail.com or the Investment
Department of the ABI Bank Ltd. at 480-2822 or
visit their website at www.abifinancial.com.



inent Member
athe Diaspora passes

It is with deep sadness that
e acknowledge the passing of
r Gilbert (Desmond) Barthley.
He was taken from us on
Sunday 14th May, 2006.

Mr Barthley was the longest
serving Public Relations Officer in the
Antigua and Barbuda National
Association in London. He had a long
career at the Post Office and was
always on hand to help the youngsters
in the community stay out of trouble with
the police. He also worked at Lord's
Cricket Grounds.

Mr Barthley was instrumental in helping
to build this High Commission's
database by supplying the names and
addresses of Antiguans and Barbudan
in the community who showed intere t
in receiving this newsletter.
He will be missed.

Thanksgiving for his life will k
place on Thursday 25th aa
Mary's Church, St
Church St et


Antigua and
Barbuda offers
facility for
PetroCaribe
initiative

Antigua and
Barbuda has offered its
facilities at the West Indies
Oil Company to be the


storage and transshipment
point for fuel to the OECS territories under
the PetroCaribe initiative.

The offer was made by the
Antigua and Barbuda delegation at the 3rd
Meeting of the OECS Energy Task Force
which was held in St. John's.

"We have an agreement in
principal from all of the countries to
capitalize on Antigua and Barbuda's
strategic positioning in the region in order
to utilize our facilities as a storage and
transshipment point. The plan at this point
is to have the PetroCaribe fuel destined for
the OECS territories shipped to Antigua
and Barbuda and from here, the fuel will
then be sent to the other participating
territories," Ambassador to Latin America
Joan Underwood announced.

She said that Antigua and
Barbuda is prepared to work along with the
member territories of the OECS to ensure
that the arrangement is successful. "We
have a number of logistical issues that
need to be addressed but Antigua and
Barbuda is very pleased that our
neighbours have decided to put their trust
and confidence in us by giving us the
responsibility in terms of the coordinating
role we will be required to play in order to
make it successful."

During the Task Force Meeting,
Prime Minister Spencer said that the
PetroCaribe's arrangement presents the
region with the opportunity to devise
methods for the introduction of alternative


wIc


PM Spencer addressing t4e Tas4 force Meeting.
To Rs left i AmbassadorJoan Underwood


approaches to market access and
correction of the various pricing
imbalances that exist in most
markets. "Our Energy policy must
therefore address issues of
partnerships with the private sector,
pricing, trade in services, external
trade negotiations and environment
and energy conservation," he said.

Addressing the issue of the
OECS formulating an Energy Policy,
the Antiguan leader also said that
"The PetroCaribe agreement already
highlights important aspects of an
Energy Policy for our sub-region. It
provides the avenue for coordination
and harmonization of energy policies
where they do exist, including oil and
oil derivatives, gas, electricity and the
efficient use of these resources,
technological cooperation, training,
development of energy infrastructure
and the harnessing of alternative
sources of energy such as wind,
solar and other kinds of energy."

Prime Minister Spencer also
outlined that the PetroCaribe
agreement should also be the
launching pad for the regional
integration of energy production and
use, to provide benefits to the people
of the region, in the form of greater
efficiency along with adding stability
to the energy market.


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Is No 1 A i


Antigua and Barbuda
Internet gaming dispute
proceedings with US to
move to the next stage

At the first meeting of the
WTO's Dispute Settlement Body (DSB)
since the passing of the April 3 deadline
for its compliance with that body's
recommendations and rulings on the
Internet gaming dispute with Antigua and
Barbuda, the US Ambassador to the
WTO, Peter Allgeier, told the DSB that
US ..."is now able to show that relevant
US laws do not discriminate against
foreign suppliers of remote gambling on
horse racing [and] US laws do not
discriminate and we can show this."

"We are aware from public
statements that Antigua and Barbuda
has a different understanding of the
findings and conclusions of the DSB in
this dispute. That understanding is
incorrect. Unfortunately, Antigua and
Barbuda's misreading of the results of
this dispute has fostered misperceptions
concerning their implications," said
Ambassador Allgeier.

In his detailed response to the
US' statement and the contents of its
"Status Report" on its so-called
"compliance" with the DSB findings,
Antigua and Barbuda's Ambassador to
the WTO, Dr. John W. Ashe, observed
that..."the United States believes that
the panel and the Appellate Body in our
dispute simply got the matter wrong by
concluding that the United States had
not met its burden of proof with respect
to the [relevant articles of the
GATS]...[and] the position of the United
States Department of Justice and the
USTR [is using] to assert US'
"compliance" is in fact no different than
the position which was raised during the
course of the proceedings and found
unpersuasive by both the panel and the
Appellate Body."


Ambassador Ashe, in seeking to
underscore the apparent paradox in the
US' position, told the DSB that the US was
in fact taking a position that was already
adjudicated in the dispute and simply
asserting "...that exact position as a basis
for coming into compliance with the
recommendations and rulings of the
DSB..."

Since the two sides disagree then
the next step in the process would be
invoking an "Article 21.5 compliance
panel."

"This is a procedure used when a
WTO member has been told to bring its
laws into compliance with a WTO ruling,
has taken some steps to comply, and the
parties to the original dispute disagree as
to the efficacy of the compliance efforts,"
said Mark Mendel, the legal adviser to
Antigua and Barbuda.

"Under Article 21.5, the offending
member's laws, as affected by the
compliance efforts, are reevaluated for
WTO consistency by a three-member
panel, which is preferably comprised of the
same three persons that made up the
original panel. In some ways this is much
like the original proceeding, providing for a
full review by the panel, the issuance of an
interim then final report and a right to
appeal to the Appellate Body. This
process, which has been invoked in
various WTO disputes, can be initiated by
Antigua and Barbuda at any time and could
take well over a year to resolve," he said.



Western Union
resumes operations

On the 24th April Minister of
Finance and the Economy Dr. Errol Cort
officially presented to the Jamaican-based
company Grace Kennedy, the new agent
for Western Union, a permit to operate a


money remittance and transfer
business in Antigua and Barbuda.

In January this year,
Western Union suspended its
services in Antigua and Barbuda
under its agent the British American
Insurance (BAI), in order to carry out
an internal review of its operations.

Minister of Finance and the
Economy Dr. Errol Cort during a
Press Conference welcoming the
team to Antigua, said "we are looking
to Grace Kennedy for greater things
to come, not just Western Union, but
we know that you are a financial giant
within the region and we are hoping
that we will be able to partner with
you in further developing the financial
services in Antigua and Barbuda".

Regional Vice President of
Western Union (Caribbean) Mr.
Tarcisio Bortoletto said now that
Western Union has returned to the
market with a new agent and they
now have a better working
relationship with the government
they are resuming operations on a
better footing.

Also present was Mr. Noel
Greenland, International Marketing
Manager of Grace Kennedy
Information Services. Greenland said
his company is overjoyed to be
operating in Antigua. He also added
that the Antiguan public can expect
only the best service from Western
Union since its aim is to serve and
please its customers.








jo


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Is No 1 A i


Minister Coifn Derrin urig tle sessions

Senator Colin Derrick
attends Justice Ministers
of the Americas meeting
in Santo Domingo

Minister of Justice Senator
Colin Derrick represented Antigua and
Barbuda at the 6th Meeting of Ministers
of Justice and General Prosecutors of
the Americas (VI REMJA) from April 24
to 26, in Santo Domingo with the topic of
the prisons and the international
cooperation in the area forensics.

The meeting addressed,
among other things, the reform of the
justice system, the reorganization of
Police, Judicial and Penitentiary
systems; all designed to protect the
fundamental rights of persons against
any form of abuse or violence and to
guarantee just treatment to those
involved in penal processes and their
reintegration into society.

This event also concentrated
its interest on corrections, taking into
account that the situation of the prison
population and its deteriorating
conditions has worsened in the region for
the last few years.

Antigua and Barbuda
injects US$6 Million into
LIAT Shareholdings to
increase

The Government has invested
the sum of US$6 million into LIAT (1974)
Ltd. The investment is provided within


the context of LIAT's ongoing
restructuring programme aimed at
restoring financial viability to the
regionally owned carrier. The investment
takes the form of an immediate infusion of
US$5 million to be followed by a further
US$1 million at a date to be agreed with
LIAT management.

In announcing the investment,
Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation,
Harold Lovell of Antigua and Barbuda,
noted the critical role that LIAT played
within the Antigua and Barbuda economy
and the need for the airline's owners to
provide financing for the airline during its
transition to a more low cost operation. The
Minister noted that the Government of
Antigua and Barbuda had confidence in the
new Business Plan being pursued by LIAT
which was aimed at improving
performance and productivity through a
number of measures including the use of
new technologies, strengthening the
airlines marketing capabilities, and
introduction of more direct services and
new routes.

The Minister noted that while
LIAT had recently been successful in
relation to a number of important
achievements including introduction of
ticket-less travel, a new low-cost ticketing
system for advance purchases, and
commercial arrangements with BWIA, that
continuing high fuel prices and an
extremely competitive airline industry had
adversely affected LIAT's performance
during the first quarter of 2006.

Minister Lovell noted that as was
the case with other regional airlines, LIAT's
owners had
therefore seen it
necessary to invest
finances into the
upgrading and .......................
operation of the
carrier during this
period. He noted
that the investment
by the Government
of Antigua and


Barbuda followed an earlier
investment of US$10M by the
Government of Barbados, and that
discussions were planned with the
Caribbean Development Bank (CDB)
for financing of various elements of
the airlines medium term to long term
development plans.

The decision by the
Government of Antigua and Barbuda
to provide additional investment into
the company is expected to increase
the shareholding of Antigua and
Barbuda within the company to over
30%, and allowing for the
appointment of three Antigua and
Barbuda Directors to the LIAT Board
of Directors. Other principal
shareholders in LIAT are the
governments of Barbados and St
Vincent and The Grenadines and
BWIA. Additionally a number of
OECS owned banks, private
corporations, credit unions, and other
investors also have shareholding in
the regionally owned company
including airline staff.

LIAT will celebrate fifty
years of service to the Caribbean in
October 2006. In addition to its role
role as a leading Caribbean carrier
the airline is also seen as a key
instrument of regional integration
including efforts for establishment of
a Caribbean Single Market. The
airline presently serves destinations
throughout the eastern Caribbean
from The Dominican Republic in the
north to Guyana in the south.


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Is No 1 A i


Mill Reef Club makes
donation to Holberton
Hospital

The Mill Reef Club has made
another substantial donation to the
Holberton Hospital in the form of four
Metalyse medication from the Mill Reef
Club to assist patients who have had a
heart attack.

In presenting the medication to
the Hospital Administrator Gary Thomas,
Dr Madeline Fraser, a member of the Mill
Reef Club said that the medication will
improve the blood supply to the heart
muscle and break down clots activating
a natural enzyme in the blood.

The cost of the Metalyse
medication is $3,260.00 each

Dr Fraser also noted that this is
the fourteenth time in 3 years that the
Mill Reef Club has donated the Metalyse
medication to the Holberton Hospital.

In accepting the donation, Mr.
Thomas said that he was grateful for the
contribution and he hopes that the Mill
Reef Club will continue to make similar
donations to the health institution.

Over the years, according to
Mr. Thomas, the Mill Reef Club has
donated over US$6 million towards the
country while $60,000 was given to the
Holberton Hospital to upgrade the facility.

The Club has already donated
a golf cart for the laundry room, two
industrial size machines and a hot water
system, linens, chairs, curtains, patients
call systems, bed side tables, and
refurbishing the semi private rooms on
Edward Ward.

The Mill Reef Club was formed
in 1948 and started making contributions
to Antigua and Barbuda in the early
1950s.


qOotB

P.,, TO [pj flEU N IUIN .O N G(-, _ L A _._eO;_
. A E_ IIo N


Minister ofLalfo) Drjacqui Qu inn-Leadedro centre l resenting ceque to Se/l/y
c/arke (/eftl an Maurke Chtie n lri t ofte TUC


Government presents
$50,000 subvention to
Trade Union Congress

Minister of Labour Public
Administration and Empowerment Dr.
Jacqui Quinn Leandro handed over a
cheque in the amount of $EC50,000.00 to
the Antigua and Barbuda Trade Union
Congress (ABTUC). This grant was an
election promise made by the United
Progressive Party to the TUC and is now
being honoured by the government of
Antigua and Barbuda.

While making the presentation of
the first annual subvention to the TUC, the
Minister of Labour noted that it was the
very first time that a government was
partnering with the Unions in this country.
"I would like to call it a red letter day," she
said. "Today through this subvention, my
government is assisting in improving your
viability as an organization."

The Minister had high praises for
the TUC and in her remarks stated, "I want
to say to you that the TUC is an admirable
effort, a bold and laudable step taken by all
the Unions of this country to unite in peace
and harmony; to set aside political,


ideological and philosophical
differences to work for a common
cause in the best interest of Labour
and specifically for workers in this
country."

President of the TUC,
Maurice Christian thanked the
government for sharing the workers
taxes with the workers
representation. "I am pleased that
the government lived up to its word,"
he said. Christian shared that the
TUC at present has annual revenue
of less than $5000.00.

Christian stated that the
funds would go toward training Trade
Union educators to enlighten workers
about the labour code and workers
rights and some of it will help to
provide education about AIDS in the
workplace.

Shelly Clarke, Treasurer of
the TUC, thanked the Labour
Minister for the tangible support and
tangible proof of the pledge made by
the UPP during the 2004 campaign.
Clarke made it clear to those who
would think otherwise that the TUC is
not for sale and pointed out that it is
not unusual for governments to


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W Iu N 1 pi


Support trade union congresses.

Present at the handing over
ceremony was Ambassador Keithlyn
Smith, Antigua's Ambassador to the
International Labour Organization (ILO).



Ambassador Richie
Richardson participates in
photo exhibition and panel
discussion in Toronto
Canada

CEO of the Antigua and
Barbuda Sports Tourism Alliance
(ABSTA), Ambassador Richie
Richardson represented the Cricket
Diaspora and his nation, at "Cricket:
reality, respect, reward" photo
exhibition and panel discussion in
Toronto Canada.

According to organizers of this
event, the West Indies preparation for
the hosting of the ICC World Cup Cricket
2007 is stimulating the interest of
Canada's cricket community, especially
given the aspiration of the Canadian
National Cricket Team, which will
compete in the quadrennial event.

With the kind endorsement of
Toronto City Councillor Michael
Thompson, and of the Consulate of
Antigua and Barbuda in Toronto,
photographer Michael Phang presented
the photo exhibition 'conjuring cricket':
images of a culture, at Metro Hall from
April 24 30.

The exhibition comprised
images created during a recent visit to
Antigua, the country that will host the
ICC Cricket World Cup quarter final
matches. "These images explore a
nation on the verge of welcoming the
world, a nation in which cricket is more
passion than a simple pastime," reflected
Phang.


On the evening of April 26th,
Antigua and Barbuda's Consul General
Mme. Madeline Blackman hosted a public
reception followed by a panel discussion.
The Panel Discussion focused on the
theme; "Cricket: reality, respect, reward", in
which Ambassador Richardson played a
major part.

With ICC Cricket World Cup 2007
fast approaching and the excitement and
enthusiasm beginning to pervade the
Caribbean, Richardson said he was very
excited to have participated in "Cricket:
Reality, Respect, Reward" a Photo
Exhibition and Panel Discussion in Toronto
on April 26th.

"This event featured grass root
cricket in Antigua and Barbuda and our
plans and preparation for World Cup 2007,
which will no doubt give Antigua and
Barbuda priceless exposure in Canada
and indeed North America as a whole,"
remarked Ambassador Richardson.

Errol Townsend, President of the
Ontario Cricket Association and one of five
selectors to Canada's Senior Team,
moderated the proceedings. The panel
also featured Ben Sennik, President of the
Canadian Cricket Association, Andy Pick,
Team Coach of the Canadian National
Cricket Team, Film-maker Sanjay Talreja,
and Manyu Sharma, President of the
Ryerson Student Cricket Association.

Antigua and Barbuda
receives CARICOM support
on Internet Gaming dispute
with the US

CARICOM has agreed it is
imperative for the region to bring to bear
the maximum levels of diplomatic support
to Antigua and Barbuda on the WTO
Internet Gaming matter with the United
States.

This was one of the agreements
reached at the recently concluded 9th


Meeting of the Council for Foreign
and Community Relations COFCOR
in Grenada.

Prime Minister Baldwin
Spencer, who attended the two-day
meeting, said that CARICOM agreed
that the US non-compliance with the
WTO Ruling had far-reaching
implication that extended beyond
Internet gaming to the entire sector of
services.

He said that the grouping
agreed that CARICOM Member
States should provide political and
diplomatic support to Antigua and
Barbuda in its efforts to have the US
comply with the WTO ruling. "To
assist the process, Antigua and
Barbuda will be required to prepare
and forward to the CARICOM
Secretariat a dossier on the issue
outlining the background, the initial
and appellate rulings of the WTO and
actions required of the US in respect
of compliance with the rulings," PM
Spencer stated.

The Prime Minister stated
that he has already instructed
Antigua and Barbuda's Ambassador
to the WTO, Dr. John Ashe, to
prepare the dossier, as the
CARICOM Secretariat along with the
Caribbean Regional Negotiating
Machinery CRNM would consider the
best way forward to provide the
support Antigua and Barbuda needs
at this time.

The dispute between
Antigua and Barbuda and the USA
over the Internet Gaming matter has
moved to the stage of invoking Article
21.5 compliance panel since both
sides cannot agree on the way
forward.

This is a procedure used
when a WTO member has been told
to bring its laws into compliance with
a WTO ruling, has taken some steps


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Isu NoI. 109 Api 00


to comply, and the parties to the original
dispute disagree as to the efficacy of the
compliance efforts.

Under Article 21.5, the
offending member's laws, as affected by
the compliance efforts, are reevaluated
for WTO consistency by a three-member
panel, which is preferably comprised of
the same three persons that made up the
original panel. In some ways this is
much like the original proceeding,
providing for a full review by the panel,
the issuance of an interim then final
report and a right to appeal to the
Appellate Body.




International Social
Services (ISS) Fair

International Social Services
(ISS) Fair was held at the Kensington
Town Hall on Tuesday 9th and
Wednesday 10th May. Antigua and
Barbuda's Stall was well received,
thanks to the tireless efforts of Mrs
Roberts and her helpers.

Princess Alexandra visited
Antigua and Barbuda's stall where she
purchased some items (see photograph
top right).

The Fair had the honour of
listening to the melodious sounds of
Harry Hughes and his steel-band. The
organizers of the Fair was extremely
thankful for the entertainment they
provided to the many shoppers as they
entered the hall. Their music was
commented upon and enjoyed by all.

The feature item for the Antigua
and Barbuda stall was, of course,
Cavalier Rum. We are always grateful to
Mrs Manners and Mrs Molly Richards
who we can always depend on to make
our coconut sugar cakes, peanut sugar


cakes and coconut fudge (Antiguan style).

To those of you who were able to
support us at the Fair, some for the first
time, Thank You.


(above) Just a few photographs
of the Antigua and Barbuda Stall at
the ISS Fair and Harry Hughes
and his steel-band


HONORARY
CONSULS/TOURIST/
MARITIME OFFICES


FRANCE

Mr Manuel Preud'homme
43 Avenue de Friedland
Paris 75008
Tel: +33(0) 1 53 75 15 71
Fax:+33(0) 1 53 75 15 69


GERMANY

Dr Werner Giersch
Thomasstrasse 11
D-61348 Bad Homburg
Tel:+ 49 (0) 61 72 21 50 4
Fax:+49 (0) 61 72 21 51 3


Captain Martin Liestmann
Department of Marine
Services and
Merchant Shipping
AM Patentbusch 4
26125 Oldenburg
Germany
Tel: + 49 441 93959-0
Fax:+ 49 441 93959-29

ITALY

Miss Yvonne Fisher
Via Santa Maria alla Porta
9 20123 Milano
Tel/Fax:+39 02 877983


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