Caribbean Connect - Full Multimedia Booklet

Page 1

BOOKLETMULTIMEDIA CMC & DIME NETWORK UPLIFTING THE REGIONAL MEDIA SETTING; CMC & DIME NETWORK UPLIFTING THE REGIONAL MEDIA SETTING; PRESENTING THE CARIBBEAN IN A NEW AND BRIGHTER WAY THROUGH OUR OWN LENSES PRESENTING THE CARIBBEAN IN A NEW AND BRIGHTER WAY THROUGH OUR OWN LENSES August 2022

Mr. Frits Pengel (91) Founder of the Surinaamse Televisie Stichting (STVS), frst TV station in Suriname in 1965, and former President of the Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU) from 1976–1980 and 1984–1987. Recipient of the 2022 Caribbean Broadcasting Hall of Fame Award For Outstanding Service to the Regional Broadcasting Sector

DIME Network and CMC, as member and part of the CBU, underscore the words of 2022 CBU Hall of Fame Award recipient Mr. Frits Pengel, stating:

"Te CBU is a very important organization in the Caribbean. Not only is she responsible to increase the level of broadcasting in the region. She is also responsible to bring the Caribbean community closer together [...] I do hope that the CBU may become the organization of Many Voices, One Caribbean. But a very very strong Caribbean."

Te Media-Highlights Compilation spotlights special reports and one on one engagements with CARICOM leaders, heads of regional agencies and other regional stakeholders.

Tis complete media package ofers in published and digital formats the Good Morning Caribbean news updates, the talk-show interviews on Caribbean Connect, and the Caribbean Youth Focus news features. Also included the Caribbean Connect conference magazine, published on the frst day of the conference.

What has hereby been started and achieved collectively, through one single collaboration of regional media entities engaging with the CARICOM should gather greater momentum and force as this Enhanced Media Initiative is carried forward, through and beyond the 50th Anniversary Celebration of CARICOM (2023), and engulfng future Caribbean ItGatherings.isanew day and the time is here for the world to see us, Caribbean countries, both individually and collectively in a new and brighter way through our own (media) lenses!

FOREWORD THE CMC – DIME ENHANCED MEDIA INITIATIVE

Daniella Tauwnaar CMC Teamleader CEO DIME Network

May you treasure, value and disseminate this joint Multi-Media Compilation, refective of the Enhanced Media Initiative, as much as we at DIME Network and CMC do.

Lori Weatherhead

On behalf of DIME Network and the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC), DIME Business Channel is both pleased and honored, on the occasion of the 2022 CARICOM’s 43rd Heads of Government Conference in Suriname, to publish and release this special Multi-Media Booklet connecting the CARICOM with its peoples, regionally and internationally.

Te CMC – DIME joint media coverage was inclusive; featuring for the frst time, signlanguage interpretation for hearing impaired persons in the daily news program Good Morning Caribbean, and a special news program for and made by the youth covering the 43rd CARICOM Head of States conference.

OFTABLE CONTENTSCOLOFON Publication Coordinator: Daniella Tauwnaar Contributing Writers & Editors: Ivan Cairo, Reann Kersenhout, Kimberly Ramkhalawan, Karen Roethof, Sean F. Taylor, Krystal Wong-Fo-San Ofcial Photos: DIME Networks Coverphoto: DIME Network Tropical Forest decor: Recover Art Gallery by Haydee Graanoogst Handmade calabash lamp: Calabash Art by Yvonne Ten Hove Graphic Designers: Chad Abdoellah, Xhosa Trustfull Published by DIME Network © August 2022 Foreword | Te CMC - DIME Enhanced Media Initiative 3 A Union's Mandate to Support Regional Development Trough Media Action & Service 5 Sonia Gill, Secretary General Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU) CMC Chairman's Message 6 Ella Hoyos CARICOM Moving Forward: A Coalition of Willingness 7 Quasi Cabinet 10 Facts About Te Country Host, Suriname 11 Our Job is to Make CARICOM Better 12 Recently-Elected Prime Minister of Grenada, Dickon Mitchell Free Movement & Mutual Recognition of CARICOM Companies 14 Barbados Prime Minister, Mia Mottley Regional Food Security & Climate Change Action 16 President of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali Regional Air & Maritime Transportation: Shared Burden & Shared Benefts 18 Antigua & Barbuda's Prime Minister, Gaston Brown Free Movement & Agriculture Development 20 Jamaica's Foreign Afairs Minister, Kamina Johnson Smith Calls For A Changed Caribbean Mindset 22 Belize Trade Minister, Eamon Courtenay For Te Beneft of Both Of Our Societies 24 Adel Al-Jubeir, Minister of State for Foreign Afairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Invest in ICT, Women & Real Integration 26 Subhas Mungra, former Minister of Foreign Afairs & Ambassador of Suriname CARICOM Looks Past COVID Pandemic; Steps Into Recovery Mode 28 CARPHA Executive Director Dr. Joy St. John Caribbean Connect, Good Morning Caribbean & Caribbean Youth Focus 30 First In-Person Participation UN in CARICOM Heads of States 32 UN Resident Coordinator Dennis Zulu UN Secretary-General António Guterres & Professor Sieuwnat Naipal 34 Another One 35 Mangroves Protect Population 36 Professor Sieuwnath Naipal Develop More Resilience Models 38 CARICOM Deputy Secretary-General Dr. Armstrong Alexis Te 3 C's & Te 3 F's 40 Ute Konig, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Eastern Caribbean We have to Create that Seat Ourselves 42 CARICOM Youth Ambassador (CYA) Corps Dean Renee Atwell Q&A with: Spoken Word Artist, Zulile Blinker 44 D'Orkest From Local News Tune to Regional Music Festival 46 CARICOM Secretary General Dr. Carla Barnett Looks Forward to 50 Year CARICOM Jubilee 48

Te Union will also welcome for the frst time in its history a sitting CARICOM Secretary General as Dr. Carla Barnett is the feature speaker on the AGA Conference Day.

Te CBU is also mindful of the existential issues afecting the region including climate change, and the constantly growing vulnerability to natural hazards, which has led to a need for greater attention to disaster risk reduction. Tis year’s AGA will also see the announcement of the frst batch of winners of co-production grants sponsored by the UN Ofce for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR).

A MANDATE

And now, as the CBU looks forward to conducting its 53rd Assembly, in partnership with the Tobago House of Assembly, it has mined the experiences of the past two years to share with the region at this unique sectoral event. Te travel and movement restrictions established to limit the spread of COVID-19 spotlighted the need for indigenous, credible and committed media, able to inform, entertain and educate.

UNION’S

Sonia Gill , Secretary General Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU)

When the CBU family last met in San Andres Island, Colombia, in August of 2019, it could not have foreseen the fundamental changes to the economic and social landscape globally.

It is a point of particular pride for the CBU to celebrate the ground-breaking work by its afliate, the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) in partnership with CBU-member DIME Network, to provide enhanced multi-media coverage of the 43rd CARICOM Heads of Government meeting in early July 2022. Te Union, looks forward to further such collaboration, which are truly helping to give life to the Union’s mandate to support the development of the region, through media action and service.

TO SUPPORT REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT THROUGH MEDIA ACTION & SERVICE

Tis year, the CBU puts the spotlight on misinformation and disinformation, as it presents the AGA Conference Day with the kind support of UNESCO, the Global Alliance on Media and Information Literacy and the Public Media Alliance.

As the CBU prepares to conduct its frst in person Annual General Assembly since 2019, it looks forward to paying tribute to its members for the resilience and strength the Caribbean media sector has displayed over the past two and half years, despite enormous challenges.

While CMC has provided coverage for most of the CARICOM Heads of Conferences over the years, we could not pass up the opportunity to extend the coverage of this important regional event in a way which would capture the attention of not only the region, but also the diaspora.

CMC wishes to thank DIME Network and the CBU for partnering with us, a clear example of the level of collaboration that is possible.

6 |

and create the awareness of the progress continually being made by CARICOM.

Ella Hoyos

CMC CHAIRMAN’S MESSAGE

Formed in August 2000 as a result of a merger between the commercial operations of the Caribbean News Agency (CANA) and the Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU), CMC continues to forge ahead to increase and improve the quality of news and entertainment programming produced and disseminated within the Caribbean region and the wider Inworld.keeping with 65 years of the combined experience between CANA and CBU, CMC’s developmental mission is to work with media houses in the region to highlight the best skills in journalism, broadcasting, publishing, on-line and technical services. In addition, the organisation strives to make inroads within the media industry by forging closer links between the Caribbean and the rest of the world.

We wish the CARICOM Heads of Government Conference successful deliberations and we look forward to playing our role in sensitizing the people of the region and the world.

As the Chair of the Board of Directors of the media house that presents the premier pan-Caribbean media services, it is my pleasure to lead the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) as it partners with Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU) member, DIME Network, to ofer enhanced the regional and international coverage of the 43rd regular meeting of the CARICOM Heads of Government from July 3 – 5, 2022 in Suriname.

Given CMC’s global footprint, deep experience and distribution capacity, we know we are well placed to sensitise

CMC stands ready to engage with CARICOM and its institutions to showcase the region’s creativity, dynamism, resolve and uniqueness, in order to achieve meaningful integration and be an example to the world.

We believe that we are best positioned to lead the charge of integrating the region and disaspora through two of our brands: CaribVision, our pan Caribbean television channel - “Te eyes and ears of the Caribbean”; and CANANews, one of the region’s oldest and most credible regional news and sports content providers – “Only the Sun covers the Caribbean better”. With the backdrop of the various crises now facing our world, especially climate change and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important that the people of the region come together to pool their resources and thereby develop a sustainable path forward.

CMC is the region’s leading multimedia organisation dedicated to excellence in communication services. Our services comprise: Television and Radio, Cable and IP distribution, Satellite Uplink Distribution, Print and New Media. Our footprint currently covers the Caribbean, North America and other regions across the globe.

CARICOM Secretary General, Dr. Carla Barnett, in her opening comments, took the opportunity to thank the outgoing chairman for his service and stewardship championing regional issues at the global front. In the same breath, she welcomed the incoming chairman, President Santokhi. Te Belize Prime Minister refected on his tenure as Chairman before handing over to Prime Minister Santokhi with a promise to lend total support to him during his term in ofce.

CARICOM MOVING FORWARD: A COALITION OF WILLINGNESS | 7

CARICOM’s 43rd Heads of Government meeting saw Suriname’s President Chandrikapersad Santokhi receive the chairmanship ofcially from Belize’s Prime Minister, John Briceno on July 3, 2022 in Paramaribo.

UNIFIED BODY Returning the sentiments, the Incoming Chairman applauded John Briceno for his tenure and described his guidance as benefting the community widely. Meanwhile, Santokhi used the opportunity to welcome his CARICOM Counterparts to visit the country at their own leisure, as the easternmost Caribbean state ofers VISA free travel to anyone from around the world. He also urged his fellow CARICOM leaders to utilize their power as a unifed body before global organizations where their 15 votes count on fscal and climate change policies. Santokhi added that the Caribbean had remained a relatively peaceful zone and was united enough to yield more infuence even as small island developing states. Santhoki: “Te reality is we are not sufciently cooperating. Te reality is that we still have diferences in opinion on issues. Te reality is that we have everything to support each other in the economy, single market, movement of goods and persons and connectivity. But the processes to facilitate this are going very slowly. Despite some progress in some regional areas of cooperation, we are still far from achieving the stated goals.”

PRIME MINISTER PHILLIP BRAVE ( BAHAMAS ) Te opening ceremony also served for newly elected Caribbean leaders to address their regional counterparts at the coming together meeting. Recently Elected Prime Minister of the Bahamas, Phillip Brave spoke to the region standing together against global infation: “Challenges including the economic constraints and vulnerabilities inherent to small island developing states. Te ongoing pandemic, which includes new variants, depleted health care systems, long term health impacts and the need to strengthen prevention, surveillance and treatment. Te global infation crisis which leaves many of our people struggling to aford food, energy and housing cost. Social security systems, stretched to the maximum as we seek to provide safety nets, and of course the existential threat poised by climate change. It is striking that most of urgent struggles arrive in great part from external causes. We are each responsible for making our individual countries stronger and more resilient to the impact of events. But the history of our region makes it clear that we can have a greater impact if we also join forces and stand together.

PRIME MINISTER DICKON MITCHELL ( GRENEDA )

Grenada’s newest Prime Minister, Dickon Mitchell says the recent elections is proof of the region’s strong democratic values, where transition of power among leaders in the region are smoother than some of the larger countries in the world ofen viewed as democratic powerhouses. Mitchell:

PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS

“I KNOW YOU JOIN ME IN SEEING THE URGENCY OF MOVING BEYOND PROMISES AND PLEDGES, IT IS TIME FOR ACTION”

UNITED NATION’S SECRETARY GENERAL ANTONIO GUTTERES

Te event also served for newly elected Caribbean leaders their inaugural opportunity to address their regional counterparts at the coming together meeting, including St. Lucia’s Prime Minister Phillip Pierre who used the platform to pledge his country’s support to ensuring the CSME works for all Caribbean nations through developmental initiatives. He put the question of “What is the next stage of Caribbean development” to his fellow leaders. “In light of all the global changes that has taken place in the last decade and since the treaty which established CARICOM, at the center of the thinking behind the CSME, was the need to create the conditions for the free movement of people and capital, and the need to establish a single economy as a unifed space for a joint growth and development of Caribbean businesses. And more importantly the improvement of capital and the need to establish a single economy as was the recognition that the issues of governance in terms of the function in the CARICOM secretariat had to be reworked to facilitate the implementation of decisions and the day to day management of the CSME”.

Te Bahamas is one of the ten countries in the world most vulnerable to climate change, while every country is facing adverse and extreme weather events, the countries in our region face extraordinary and immediate risks. We have heard for many years, about the good intentions of others. I know you join me in seeing the urgency of moving beyond promises and pledges, it is time for action.

Te highlight of this year’s event is the presence of United Nation’s Secretary General Antonio Gutteres who is here to take in the concerns of the region, something he says, while already common knowledge among world leaders, he intends to champion through necessary changes to the way concessional fnancing is distributed to Small Island Developing States. Guterres told CARICOM leaders they were “victims of the myth that middle income countries do not need concessional fnancial support, a need that completely disregards vulnerability to external shocks support the creation of a Caribbean Resilience Fund.

8 |

“WE NEED TO REFORM THE INTERNATIONAL FINANCIAL SYSTEM TO LAY THE GROUNDWORK FOR A NEW ARCHITECTURE THAT CAN BETTER RESPOND AND PREVENT MASSIVE VULNERABILITY TO EXTERNAL SHOCKS AND ENSURE THAT FINANCING GOES WHERE IT’S NEEDED MOST”

PRIME MINISTER PHILLIP PIERRE ( ST. LUCIA )

“We campaigned on a vision where we wanted to create a sustainable, equitable and prosperous nation for all. We envisioned a nation and we believe it is a time of choosing where we must stand resolute to enable every little boy and little girl, every man, every woman where every citizen who ever dare to dream and look before them that they should know, that they would know, that all have an equal opportunity to realize their potential and enjoy the fruits of their labor without fear of discrimination, or to be told by critics and naysayers that their pursuit cannot be done or it is too hard or too difcult to achieve.”

President Santhoki called for more to be done in providing security to regional countries as it currently took up a large chunk of Caribbean budgets, with the need to protect its maritime zones for individual states all while ensuring they have total control of their spaces. Santokhi said if the region worked together, CARICOM could utilize joint satellite monitoring programs in a comprehensive manner, with public private partnerships at the center of such projects.

PHOTO: Te opening ceremony was also enriched by the many cultural presentations featured by the Surinamese artists and youth. During the entrance of the CARICOM heads of states and their representatives, the musical tunes of the Apinti drum of the Maroons, the sambura drum of the Amerindians, the tabla and tazza of the Hindu-Surinamese, the gamelan instruments of the Indo-Surinamese, and the percussion gongs of the Chinese-Surinamese flled the Assuria Events Centre with melodious bongs and chimes. Te evening was further inspired by moving spoken word from Zulile Blinker and dance performances worthy of the received applause and introspection.

More broadly, we need to reform the international fnancial system to lay the groundwork for a new architecture that can better respond and prevent massive vulnerability to external shocks and ensure that fnancing goes where it’s needed most.

15 VOTES YES Meanwhile President Santokhi echoed similar sentiments, reminding his colleagues that their votes at the global level matters to impacting the necessary change when it came to international climate change and fnancing policies, “the fact that we have 15 votes yes, indeed, on our own small votes, but together we have a strong voice that we can use to promote unity initiate dialogue facilitate intraregional cooperation and joint eforts by CARICOM enterprises.” He closed by ofering a special invite to Grenada’s new Prime Minister to frame the frst youth policy within CARICOM I am inviting him to develop the frst youth policy together with me for the Caribbean region.

And I want to reassure the Prime Minister of Barbados that the UN will be fully supportive of the initiative that you are taking this summer in this regard.

Clearly, our old metrics have failed us. It’s time to change them”.

It’s also high time to move beyond the fnancial system’s preoccupation with per capita income as a sole measure of a country’s economic strength. Tat’s why I strongly support the establishment of a multi-dimensional vulnerability index that takes into account all of the challenges and circumstances that factor into determining access to concessional support. For your countries, this would mean ensuring that the complex and interdependent factors of debt and climate change impact are captured in any eligibility analysis for debt relief and fnancing.

Eforts are also needed to lower the cost of borrowing, while helping countries leverage afordable fnance through publicprivate partnerships. And in this regard, I fully support the creation of a Caribbean Resilience Fund.

| 9

Antigua and Barbuda Services Belize Justice and Governance

Barbados Single Market and Economy (including Monetary Union) Grenada Science and Technology (including Information and Communications)

CARICOM Heads of Government have established a Quasi-Cabinet with a view to further advance specifc issues/areas within the Community. Te decision to establish the Quasi-Cabinet was taken at their Seventh Special Meeting (October 1999, Trinidad & Tobago), convened to deliberate on a Vision for the future of the Region. Within the Quasi-Cabinet, individual Heads of Government have a responsibility for critical areas of CARICOM Development.

Saint Lucia Sustainable Development (including Environment and Disaster Management and Water)

CABINET

10 |

QUASI

PORTFOLIO ALLOCATION

St Kitts and Nevis Human Resource Development, Health and HIV/AIDS Trinidad and Tobago Energy and Security Bahamas Tourism (including Land, Cruise, ACP/EU Partnership Agreement provisions etc)

Suriname Community Development and Cultural Cooperation (including Culture, Gender, Youth and Sport), Industrial Policy

Dominica Labour (Including intra-Community Movement of Skills) Jamaica External Trade Negotiations

St Vincent and the Grenadines Transport (Maritime and Aviation)

Te current Quasi-Cabinet Portfolio allocation is:

Guyana Agriculture, Agricultural Diversifcation and Food Security (including the Regional Transformation Programme (RTP) and Bananas)

* Suriname boasts 90%+ forest cover. Te Indigenous Peoples have been the Stewards of Suriname’s priceless ‘greenery’ having protected and preserved it for millennia.

*

Several waves of ofen forced migrations, starting in the 17th through the 19th century, brought peoples from Africa, China, India, Indonesia and Europe to Suriname. Tus, Suriname is a cultural mecca and meeting ground for peoples the world over, boasting today a rich multireligious, multi-cultural nation.

* Suriname formally became a Member of the CARICOM on 4th July, 1995.

* In the CARICOM, Suriname is the ofcial location for the Caribbean Regional Information & Translation Institute (CRITI).

* In the Caribbean, Suriname is home to the largest Maroon communities – peoples who not only escaped slavery but also who have preserved and maintained their linguistic and cultural roots and traditions from Africa three centuries later.

FACTS ABOUT THE HOST COUNTRY SURINAME

* In the CARICOM Quasi-Cabinet, Suriname holds the portfolio for Community Development & Cultural Cooperation (including Culture, Gender, Youth and Sport) and Industrial Policy.

* Surinamers are a tolerant, friendly and peaceful people. Te country is rich in natural resource with large gold, oil and natural gas reserves and deposits. It possesses highly arable land and is an exporter of rice, bananas and fsh.

* Suriname is home to a sizeable (the largest per capita) Indonesian community in the Caribbean.

* Te era of European Discovery brought an array of colonizers from Europe, some French, Spanish, Portuguese, British and Dutch. Te Dutch prevailed and had the longest period of colonial domination.

* Ancient petroglyphs (rock-paintings or timehri) telling cryptic tales of the First Peoples have been found at Kwamalasamutu, in southern Suriname. Tese are the Werehpai Caves, predating 5000 BCE.

* Suriname is part of the Guiana Shield, an ancient 2 billion year old geological formation on the Earth. Suriname owes her mineral wealth and natural resources to this ancient formation.

* In the modern era, Suriname became an independent nation-state on 25th November, 1975.

* Based on colonization, Dutch is the ofcial language; however, the language of most of the people of Suriname is Sranantongo (the Suriname language). Given its multicultural strands streaming from various directions, every household in Suriname is bi-lingual, tri-lingual or multilingual, with mother-tongues possibly being Aukaans, Saamakans, or any of a dozen Afro-based and Amerindian languages, Sranan, Hakka/Mandarin, Sarnami-Hindi, English, and / or Bassa-Jawa.

* Suriname was twice claimed and ruled as a British colony, 1651-1667, and later, around 1799-1815. Eventually, the Dutch and British swapped Suriname for New York, U.S.A..

Our Job is to Make CARICOM Better!

Dickon Mitchell has assumed ofce as the ninth Prime Minister of Grenada on June 24, 2022. In little over a week’s time since, he travelled to the Republic of Suriname to attend his frst Heads of Government Meeting.

Recently-Elected Prime Minister of Grenada, Dickon Mitchell:

On the set of Caribbean Connect, he shared the fun fact: "I spent probably as much time in Suriname as I have spent home since becoming political leader." Nevertheless, Mr Dickon made a lasting impression in both his inaugural speech at the Opening of the conference and his one-on-one interview at the DIME Network studio in Paramaribo.

“CERTAINLYbetter."INGRENADA’S

In the fnal moments of the interview, the CARICOM Quasi-Cabinet portfolio of the Head of State of Grenada, namely Science and Technology (including Information and Communications) was discussed. Prime Minister Mitchell declared that he will take on the responsibility of this portfolio full-time and noted that one regulatory body throughout CARICOM needs to be pursued, the high roaming rates needs to be eliminated, the ICT sector needs to be monetized, and broadband needs to be made available throughout the region. He also posited that our educational curriculum needs to be re-examined to include many of the developments of the ICT sector. Te Prime Minister concluded by stating the importance of investing in human capital: “Our most precious resource is our people”.

Mr Mitchell: “But I am happy to be here. Te CARICOM Heads of Government Meeting is obviously an important one and I thought, notwithstanding the fact that I had just been elected, that it was important for me to come to meet my fellow colleagues and to share and hear from them as to the collective challenges we face and how we’re going to overcome them in the WithCaribbean.”regardsto

INVEST IN HUMAN CAPITAL

the issues on the 43rd CARICOM Heads Of Government agenda, Prime Minister Mitchell gave emphasis to the need to re-imagine the governance structure of the CARICOM in order for it to be made "more fexible, more efcient, and crucially it has to deliver." Te prelude to this statement was his examination of the average citizen’s view of the CARICOM as a ‘talk shop’ which he thinks is justifed to some extent. He explains that "too much of it is just circular, sometimes bemusing inconsequential conversations that is not advancing our agenda. Part of it is the bureaucracy – hence the need for government improvement – but also, part of it is that as heads we have to take responsibility." Te Prime Minister followed-up by afrming his belief in the integration process and stating that it is "our job is to improve it and make it

| 13

toClickuI3QySsqgkhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ithelinkbeloworscanQR-Codeseetheinterview.

HISTORY, WHENEVER THERE’S BEEN TRANSFORMATIVE CHANGE TO SOCIETY, IT HAS BEEN LED BY YOUNG LEADERS” GALVANIZE YOUTH ACTION

In response to the invitation extended to him by the incoming Chair of the CARICOM, H.E. Chandrikapersad Santokhi, President of the Republic of Suriname, to be involved in the forthcoming youth policy for the region as the currently youngest Prime Minister in the CARICOM Quasi-Cabinet, Prime Minister Mitchell was both humbled and excited by the request. He went on to say: "What we really want to do is to galvanize youth action throughout the region and within CARICOM. I made the point last night to the youth, that certainly in Grenada’s history, whenever there’s been transformative change to society, it has been led by young leaders. I am actually not the youngest Prime Minister that Grenada’s ever had. Maurice Bishop was, I think, 33 when he became Prime Minister. Sir Eric Gary got involved in politics when he was 29. And they are probably the most transformative leaders Grenada has ever had, so comparatively speaking I am an old man."

Greneda Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell and Caribbean Connect presenter Reann Kersenhout.

In citing concrete examples of what can be done to increase youth participation, Prime Minister Mitchell mentioned the serious freedom of movement within the region and the investment in areas that young people are most likely to be involved in such as the creative arts, entertainment industry and sports. Moreover, he sees it as crucial to view these areas as more than hobbies but potential avenues for careers. As a last example, Prime Minister Mitchell spoke of the possibility of opening a diplomacy centre in Grenada within the context of the CARICOM and the relationships within the international arena. He said, "those are some of the things that we need to pursue with our young people in mind."

:

FREE MOVEMENT & MUTUAL RECOGNITION OF CARICOM COMPANIES

In a brief interview on the set of Caribbean Connect, Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Amor Mottley spoke about the progress in actualizing the CARICOM Single Market & Economy (CSME) – a crucial initiative that falls under her portfolio in the CARICOM Quasi-Cabinet. Most important are the matters about free movement of skilled workers and the mutual recognition of companies in the CARICOM.

With regards to the development of the Single Economy, Prime Minister Mottley cited the close collaboration with the Co-operative Republic of Guyana and President, H.E. Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali concerning the issue of food security and agricultural development as well as the development of an industrial policy in the region to ensure industrial efectiveness and competitiveness as was decided during the Tirty-Tird Intersessional Meeting that took place in Belize 1-2 March, 2022. Te development of the industrial policy in the region falls under the portfolio of H.E. Chandrikapersad Santokhi, President of the Republic of Suriname. Prime Minister Mottley says: “I hope that we would be able to move as quickly on that issue as we would have done recently on the issue of food security and agro-investment with Guyana”.

“IF WE ARE GOING TO BE RESPONSIBLE FOR OUR OWN AFFAIRS, THEN IT HAS TO BE ON BOTH RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES AND THEREFORE THE CONCEPT OF ACTIVE CITIZENSHIP MATTERS TODAY MORE THAN EVER”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfSBC0M4s_8ClickthelinkbeloworscanQR-Codetoseetheinterview. | 15

The Prime Minister noted that a clear decision was made with regards to the defnition of workers which would allow more countries in the CARICOM to implement the laws and regulations necessary to facilitate the movement of Caribbean nationals who fall within those categorisations. She also shared that a decision was made to move quickly on the matter of mutual recognition of companies within the CARICOM, and that in the coming few months, the work of the corporate registries on this issue will be accelerated to achieve this.

Barbados Prime Minister, Mia Mottley

Barbados became a republic on November 30th, 2021 – the same day Barbadians celebrated 55 years of independence. In response to the new developments within Barbados given the recent achievement of the republic independent status, Prime Minister Mottley commented: “It is a continuum of completing the process of independence. When we became frst independent in 1966, the emphasis was on rights alone, but we recognize that if we are going to be responsible for our own afairs, then it has to be on both rights and responsibilities, and therefore the concept of active citizenship matters today more than ever.”

PROCESS OF INDEPENDENCE

Dr.

Ali: President

Dr.

Ali: Regional Food Security & Climate Change Action

President of the RepublicCooperativeofGuyana, Mohamed Irfaan of the RepublicCooperativeofGuyana, Mohamed Irfaan

REGIONAL FOOD PRODUCTION SYSTEM

“I

Fresh from the plenary sessions, President Ali shared some key areas, giving an update following the agriculture expo Guyana hosted in May 2022. Te event was something planned back in March when regional government heads met in Belize at the intercessional meeting and the 25 by 2025 goals were outlined. He shared how an ‘overarching strategy that involves all the stakeholders in the region and individual countries themselves including the private sector, women, youth, the farming community, and university students in some cases’ is developed into something measurable with specifc targets that require specifc actions to be taken by each state in achieving this plan. President Ali: “How do we create an agro-business model that incorporates young people with an understanding that food production was not a backward thing, but rather proftable with opportunities for them to advance their own careers, bringing along the next generation of CARICOM nationals who will be part of the food production system”.

CARICOM’s 43rd Regular heads of government meeting saw a renewed coverage of the event unlike any other the region has seen in quite some time. This year saw the collaboration of CMC with the DIME Network ensuring that the Caribbean was kept abreast of what was happening on the ground in Paramaribo, Suriname, where regional delegates and leaders converged for the meeting.

Noting that there are barriers within the region itself, according to President Ali this year’s meeting saw ‘a clear commitment from all the leaders that the time for talking is over and there is now a working strategic time-bound approach of the removal of these barriers’.

FIGHT AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE

One such remarkable instance was the sit-down interview with Guyana’s President Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali for the DIME Network Business Channel talk show Caribbean Connect, where leaders were engaged on topics they spearheaded at the plenary sessions during this year’s conference. With President Ali leading the vision of agriculture development and the matter of Food Security at the regional level in particular, the sit down provided an opportunity to discuss the matters at hand and what was on the agenda in moving food security forward.

THINK AN IMPORTANT THING THE MEDIA SHOULD FOCUS ON IN THE REGION IS HOW DO WE MONITOR AND HOW DO WE FOLLOW UP ON THE DECISIONS WE MAKE.”

In his wrap up the President remarked “I think an important thing the media should focus on in the region is how do we monitor and how do we follow up on the decisions we make. I am very optimistic about the future of CARICOM. I believe strongly that there is a renewed commitment on moving from strategy discussions to strategy implementations and this is a good place to be, and a good time to be in CARICOM.”

“I AM VERY OPTIMISTIC ABOUT THE FUTURE OF CARICOM. I BELIEVE STRONGLY THAT THERE IS A RENEWED COMMITMENT ON MOVING FROM STRATEGY DISCUSSIONS TO STRATEGY IMPLEMENTATIONS AND THIS IS A GOOD PLACE TO BE, AND A GOOD TIME TO BE IN CARICOM.”

| 17

Te Guyana president also shared Guyana’s role in preserving one of the world’s largest rainforests, the Amazon, putting into perspective its size on the global map, and how critical saving it is in the fght against climate change. He underscored the importance of meeting the world target of reducing the global warming temperature by 1.5 degrees Celsius, yet striking a balance with low carbon energy industry strategies and sustainability among its indigenous communities through carefully thought-out development plans.

QR-CodeClickwatch?v=34DMM6Sym38https://www.youtube.com/thelinkbeloworscantoseetheinterview.

Antigua & Barbuda Prime Minister, Gaston Brown:Antigua & Barbuda Prime Minister, Gaston Brown: REGIONAL AIR & MARITIME TRANSPORTATION: SHARED BURDEN & SHARED BENEFITS

| 19

“You cannot sustain an integration movement if you cannot move goods and people efectively. Tis has been a major problem within the integration movement since its inception,” Mr Brown said.

“WE ALSO HAVE TO LOOK AT IT FROM THE STANDPOINT OF FOREIGN EXCHANGE LEAKAGES AND THE FACT THAT YOU MAY FIND THAT IF YOU HAVE TO DEPEND ON EXTRA REGIONAL CARRIERS TO GET US WITHIN THE CARIBBEAN, TO GO NORTH IN ORDER TO COME SOUTH, THE COST OF TRANSPORTATION WILL BECOME GREATLY PROHIBITIVE!”

Sharing his vision and insights on the set of Caribbean Connect, Prime Minister Brown highlighted what he called “pressing needs at this time,” which includes “escalating prices, especially food and fuel prices, the existential threat of climate change the region grapples with, and the issue of de-risking” which has been afecting the region for several years now.

Citing his own personal experience, the Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister shared the woes he recently faced trying to book his fights to attend the CARICOM meeting in Suriname. He said, “I tried to book a fight through Miami to get to Suriname, and they quoted, American Airlines, EC$22,000 which approximates US$8500. So we also have to look at it from the standpoint of foreign exchange leakages and the fact that you may fnd that if you have to depend on extra-regional carriers to get us within the Caribbean – to go north in order to come south – the cost of transportation will become greatly prohibitive! Even the requirement of a VISA to go to north America to come back to the Caribbean region! Many people will not be able to move because they do not have a VISA. So all sorts of social and economic implications necessitate urgent action to get transportation within the region right, both maritime and air transportation.”

PETROCARIBE Mr Brown also touched on the issue for the de-escalation of fuel prices. CARICOM will be pushing for some relaxation of the sanctions against Venezuela so that countries in the Caribbean can access its petroleum products at a discount (PetroCaribe), in order to reduce the cost of living on the people of the region. “Antigua and Barbuda has been at the forefront of Caribbean integration, and we continue to play our part in keeping the region united, and contributing to the various debates.” Antigua and Barbuda has been fghting for more developmental funding for the region for development is one area afecting the region.

Sustainable air and maritime transport within the region, is critical to the integration movement of CARICOM’s people. So, said Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, as he underscored the need to reintroduce a proper plan for meeting the transport needs of Caribbean People.

QR-CodeClickwatch?v=sLOAQdoaTLohttps://www.youtube.com/thelinkbeloworscantoseetheinterview.

“YOU CANNOT SUSTAIN AN INTEGRATION MOVEMENT IF YOU CANNOT MOVE GOODS AND PEOPLE EFFECTIVELY”

And while these issues continue to grab our attention, the Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister said, it is critical that we resolve the issues of connectivity, both maritime and air-transportation.

COLLECTIVE EFFORT In recent months, Barbados has undertaken talks of an Inter-Island Ferry with possible routes and even the budget approvals on the table. However, it will take some time before this plan is implemented. “When you look at matters of air transportation and maritime, it cannot be sustained by any single member-state. So, it requires a collective efort; it requires collective burden. As much as Barbados has indicated it has done some work, clearly they will have to broaden it to include all of CARICOM and to provide the kind of maritime transport mechanism in which we can move goods and people throughout the region,” Mr Brown stated frmly. As for keeping the price of food down, the Prime Minister said, it is vital that the region makes reliable and sustainable maritime transportation possible. He suggested comboassets for modes of air transportation, that is, aircrafs which can carry both people and goods. Similarly, with maritime transportation, vessels that transport people and products simultaneously, all which sustains the integration movement.

Te region is hoping to come up with a new sustainable model for air transportation in which member states will contribute; a model of shared burden and shared benefts. “In the past.” the Prime Minister said, “we have seen some countries beneft from being loafers; they made promises but did not wish to contribute. You cannot sustain air transportation or maritime, as a matter of fact, on that type of model in which some pay and others don’t.”

Jamaica’s

Foreign Affairs Minister, Kamina Johnson Smith:Jamaica’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Kamina Johnson Smith:

FREE MOVEMENT AND DEVELOPMENTAGRICULTURE FREE MOVEMENT AND DEVELOPMENTAGRICULTURE

of

POSITIVE SIGNAL About the presence of external organizations at this year’s CARICOM meeting Ms Johnson Smith said, "For CARICOM, its engagement with other international organizations can only enhance the outcomes that we engage in. Having the UN Secretary General here, we take that as a positive signal of the value of CARICOM to the UN, and an expression of respect in regard to issues primarily discussed with the UN, such as climate fnance and climate action, and issues particularly of importance to small island developing states and low lying coastal states. With the OACPS, we have been discussing matters in relation to our cooperation with the EU which takes place through the development agreement with the OACPS."

Jamaica’s Foreign Afairs Minister, Kamina Johnson Smith, expressed views illustrating the common understanding of this topic in the region.

Tis year Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness was carded to be present for the meeting; however, according to Minister Johnson Smith, urgent pressing matters prevented his travel for his in-person contributions. Nonetheless, the Prime Minister was assuredly engaged in meetings virtually, thus ensuring Jamaica’s voice was heard at the sessions.

the following categories of

At the Head of States meeting this year, progress and fnalizing the implementation of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) was one of the four big ticket items on the agenda. “Speak to the average person in many CARICOM countries and they don’t understand what CARICOM is, but when you speak about the opportunity to live and work in other neighboring countries, then they understand.”

Jamaica was one of the frst member states to reopen its doors in the height of the pandemic, utilizing a model called ‘resilient corridors’ which ensured visitor safety, as well as maintaining its hotels were stocked utilizing locally sourced goods. Minister Johnson Smith spoke on how much this model ofers linkages to agriculture, and whether Jamaica had plans on sharing its template with the region what allowed the resilient corridors to be successful. Key to this was government supporting farmers to produce regularly at a high quality and quantity capacity.

employment in any of the participating CSME Member States: While Minister Johnson Smith expressed her pleasure that progress had been made - especially with Trinidad and Tobago having recently passed legislation to recognize the ten categories - she says she was hoping to leave this year’s meeting having made progress on the two additional categories, agricultural workers and security workers. Tese areas, she says, are high on the lists of people seeking work outside her island, and sthere is a high demand for labor across the region.

Te Single Market comprises of fve (5) regimes: 1. Free movement of skills/labour 2. Free movement of goods 3. Free movement of services 4. Free movement of capital 5. Te right of establishment According to

RESILIENT CORRIDORS Jamaica is also on the committee for food security, a topic that was also on the agenda of this year’s meeting. Jamaica made a clear statement on the ministerial task force about: climate smart technology, including more women and young people in agriculture, and how to facilitate entrepreneurship in areas of organics and other niche high-value elements of agriculture. Ms Johnson Smith also mentioned the achievement of the 25 by 2025 goals outlined by CARICOM heads of state, including the reduction of the region’s food import bill which has been exacerbated by the pandemic, and more recent, the further disruption in the supply chain as a result of the Russia Ukraine war.

watch?v=9HLhn7BnSnUhttps://www.youtube.com/ClickthelinkbeloworscanQR-Codetoseetheinterview.

However,

nationals: 1. University Graduates 2. Artistes 3. Musicians 4. Media Workers 5. haveSportspersonstherighttoseek

| 21

Ms Johnson Smith said, “We believe that the movement of people is one of the most signifcant ways in which Caribbean people experience CARICOM, and we know there is ofen a great divide.” she noted it has been a challenge ‘making progress on the regime for skills certifcate applications, as well as the recognition of the ten categories, plus the new two ones, that were agreed upon a few years ago’. Article 46 the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas CARICOM

“We have to understand that we are all Caribbean people”. These were the simple words of Belize’s Minister of Foreign Afairs, Foreign Trade and Immigration, Eamon Courtenay, as he sought to capture the notion of uniting our region as one. This is the kind of thinking, he believes, will get much of the issues we face as a region corrected. "We must work together to achieve and have the best for the Caribbean people."

CALLS FOR A CHANGED CARIBBEAN MINDSET

Eamon Courtenay 22 |

Belize Trade Minister,

Transportation remains the other big topic on the table. He too, like many other leaders in the region, lament that while there was ‘tremendous trade and investment opportunities within the communities, its people felt disconnected from CARICOM processes’, seeing it as an obligation. It is a duty on leaders to make CARICOM real. As to how leaders make CARICOM real, Minister Courtenay said, "Make it easier, cheaper and more afordable for people and goods to move around the region."

Te free movement of people within the Caribbean is not ofen a reality says the Belize Trade minister. He cites the issue of discrimination where nationals from Guyana are not treated right when they did not have all their documents.

“WHEN COVID HIT AND THE BORDERS WERE CLOSED, WE WERE ABLE TO FEED OUR PEOPLE”

The idea may not be so farfetched according to the Belize Trade Minister. In hindsight looking at how the Caribbean region faced the pandemic together, this kind of unity, working for one another, makes things Tpossible.echallenges

And likewise, in recent times, Haitians in the Caribbean are being discriminated against entering its countries. Courtenay describes this as a wealth gap which exists within the Caribbean, and depending on how well one economy is doing, people feel more welcomed or not, and labeled it as a sensitive topic.

NON TARIFF BARRIERS

Belize has been touted in recent times at the agriculture and food security forums as having the ability to render assistance in these areas at CARICOM. “We have arable land and a lot of people involved in agriculture; we have marine resources, we have farm shrimp. When COVID hit and the borders were closed, we were able to feed our people. So we have to ramp up our production in order to export more. I believe that if the volumes are increased then transportation would become easier. We are exploring new markets in CARICOM, exporting to Grenada for example”. Belize is already having discussions with Grenada’s new government, as there are still some issues to work out. Currently, Belize has trading agreements to export sugar to St. Kitts, Trinidad and Tobago, as well as Jamaica.

EXPLORING NEW MARKETS

Minister Courtenay stated: “We have to change the mindset, it’s not easy. But we have to change the mindset and believe we are all Caribbean people. And unless we become more familiar with each other, unless we come together and understand we are Caribbean people, we will have these Clickproblems”.thelink below or scan QR-Code to see the watch?v=z5Q-ht1qWSYhttps://www.youtube.com/interview.

Citing other examples, Courtenay said there have been a few cases between Barbados and Trinidad on cement, and Guyana and Trinidad over cement as well. “Te point of the matter is that is the forum for the resolution of any issue. Our private sector and our governments have to use it more, so that we as governments will realize that if you are going to import something, you are going to be confronted, you are going to be taken to court, so better play within the rules.”

Another big issue is non-tarif barriers. As to how this is being tackled, the Belizean Minister did not hold back when it came to sharing issues his country has faced in recent times with another member state that failed to honor the regional tarif agreement, a matter that resulted in going to the Caribbean Court of Justice. Tis too, he said, is part of being “WhenCaribbean.wetalkabout the non-tarif barriers, we have to remember we are a treaty-based community; individuals, companies, countries have rights. If we are experiencing nontarif barriers, we must try to resolve them diplomatically, try to resolve them amicably, and if we can’t, we have to use the organ that has been set up. I am trying to sell something from Suriname to Trinidad, and Trinidad has a barrier in place. I have tried to work it out, and it can’t be worked out, go to the courts and ask the court to have it resolved.”

‘MAKE IT EASIER, CHEAPER AND MORE AFFORDABLE FOR PEOPLE AND GOODS TO MOVE AROUND THE REGION’

| 23

Caribbean countries has faced recently have been similar. Minister Courtenay cited the high cost of living that is putting a dent on local economies following the COVID pandemic. Te Belizean Minister saw some of its highest moments together during the pandemic. "When there was vaccine hoarding, and the struggle by the region to procure vaccines by working together as a community, we were able to leverage that power to get vaccines. Not only in the health spheres, but in the trade spheres, in the economic spheres, and the political and diplomatic spheres. So the most difcult and important thing for CARICOM is the ability to speak for us as one on an international scene, and where necessary, and regional hemispherical”.

“We are interested in building partnerships. We are interested in building bridges. We are interested in deepening friendships. We are interested in promoting trade and investment. We are interested in coordinating to deal with the challenges of Climate Change. We are interested in making sure that we as Developing Countries protect our interests and agenda when it comes to global events and conferences so that we are voices heard.”

Adel Al-Jubeir, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Adel Al-Jubeir, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

H.E. Adel Al-Jubeir. Minister of State for Foreign Afairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Minister Al Jubeir said, “We think what CARICOM is doing in terms of the environment is critical and important. We believe that what they are doing in terms of tolerance and diversity, whether it involves religion, culture or ethnicity is extremely commendable and should be an example for the world to follow. We support it wholeheartedly because we think that through dialogue we overcome misunderstanding and confict. We share the concern of the CARICOM countries with regards to Climate Change and its impact on countries’ physical borders. We share the concerns about the energy concerns in the world and how we can deal with it together. We share the interest in terms of sustainable food production and agriculture in CARICOM and we want to be part of the solutions. We are very interested in the issue of transportation within the CARICOM and how it evolves because we learn from that and see if we can use it in the Middle East. We think that this region has tremendous opportunities in all the sectors that I mentioned and it is a beautiful region. So we come as friends, we come as partners, and we come as people that believe that everything has to be mutually benefcial.”

| 25

FOR THE BENEFIT OF BOTH OF OUR SOCIETIES

“We have the technology as human beings to deal with this problem, and we have the capital as countries to fund this issue. What is lacking is a serious, rational debate that is based on logic and science, not based on emotions.” He considered the CARICOM’s approach to energy security and oil and gas development as rational. He added that ultimately: “Te objective is energy independence, because it reduces your cash outfow which allows you to invest internally for infrastructure, education, healthcare – the things that improve the quality of life of individuals.’

Adel Al-Jubeir, Minister of State for Foreign Afairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia visited Suriname for the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting at the invitation of the Minister of Foreign Afairs, International Business and International Cooperation, H.E. Albert R. Ramdin. In his interview with Caribbean Connect, H.E. Adel Al-Jubeir noted the similar worldview shared between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the CARICOM region - including the sovereignty of nations, principle of non-interference, the peaceful resolution of disputes, empowering youth and women, and instilling the culture of diversity and tolerance as examples thereof. “We have a lot of commonalities that we can take advantage of for the beneft of both of our societies,” said Minister Al-Jubeir.

ENERGY INDEPENDENCE

On the topic of energy security, Climate Change, and the recent developments of oil and gas within the CARICOM, the Saudi minister emphasised the importance of making rational decisions and supporting rational debate amongst all the international actors that should share the responsibility of Climate Change and clean energy development.

In addition to the visit of the Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Afairs to the CARICOM Heads of Government meeting, the minister mentioned that the Saudi Deputy Minister for Investment is also visiting Suriname and will have joined a meeting on investment between Caribbean nations and an extensive Saudi delegation comprised of representatives from their sovereign wealth fund, the Saudi development fund, as well as other fnancial institutions and private sector investors that would have taken place in the Dominican Republic to solidify the Saudi interest in the CARICOM agenda.

watch?v=KoeufeLEBtQhttps://www.youtube.com/ClickthelinkbeloworscanQR-Codetoseetheinterview.

Subhas Mungra, former Minister of Foreign Affairs and Ambassador of Suriname:

Former Minister of Foreign Afairs of the Republic of Suriname, Ambassador Subhas Mungra in response to Suriname’s decision to join the CARICOM 20 years afer the country had gained independence in 1975.

"INVEST IN ICT, WOMEN & INTEGRATION"REAL

On the set of the Caribbean Connect talk show, Suriname Ambassador Subhas Mungra spoke about the signifcance of Suriname joining the Caribbean Community as its 14th member state on July 4th, 1995, as the then-Minister of Foreign Afairs of the Republic of Suriname.

‘IF YOU ARE INDEPENDENT, YOU NEED TO FILL IT IN’

“DON’T BELIEVE POLITICIANS BLIND. THIS IS NOT A CHURCH, IT’S THE REAL WORLD. SO YOU HAVE TO INCREASE THE CONTROL SYSTEM. THE SYSTEM TO MAKE SURE THAT THE FORCES OF THE SOCIETY, THE NATURAL RESOURCES, ARE PROTECTED AND DISTRIBUTED ON A FAIR BASIS, FOR EVERYONE”

2. The CARICOM needs to invest and protect women and increase women participation

4. The CARICOM needs to empower their consumer sectors

In great detail Ambassador Mungra explained that efciency is not just a function of capital. “In today’s world, the only factor of production is the technology that you put in the head of the manager, of the labourer, etc. Tese are the new opportunities. And we should not only increase the participation of young women and boys in the labour market, we should double the market by giving priority to women in the private sector, and increase their skills."

Concerning the vital role of Caribbean women, Ambassador Mungra stressed: “We have to invest, and put high priority to invest in education, high education. But today, another factor, is equally important and that is health. You have to protect your nation, invest sufciently in health that you should be ready for any other variation of corona.”

“WE SHOULD DOUBLE THE MARKET BY GIVING PRIORITY TO WOMEN IN THE PRIVATE SECTOR, AND INCREASE THEIR SKILLS”

Mungra concluded the interview with a call to action to CARICOM nations: ‘Please increase the power of women in your society. Protect them, because you are seeing what is happening all over the world. Don’t believe politicians blind. Tis is not a church, it’s the real world. So you have to increase the control system. Te system to make sure that the forces of the society, the natural resources, are protected and distributed on a fair basis, for everyone.’

| 27

On his fourth key take-away, Ambassador Mungra referenced 19th century economic thought: "Keep in mind, the old story. People say that production determines economic development. I say that is nonsense. Te power of the economy is not in the hands of the production sector, but the Ambassadorconsumers."

Click the link below or scan QR-Code to see the watch?v=hrWhD6_FjOEhttps://www.youtube.com/interview.

Ambassador Mungra believes that advancing ICT education within the CARICOM region is of utmost importance. “Te whole world is changing now. We are in a diferent world. Increase the quality of global information, so you have to advance ICT education at all levels of education. You have to exploit the new possibilities to get information globally. You need information, especially, women. Nobody should tell you how the world is, and how you should act. Please fnd this out for yourself."

In discussing the further path of development for the CARICOM particularly as it relates to macro and microeconomic measures, given Ambassador Mungra’s expertise in the feld of economics, and in light of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting, the Ambassador stressed the following four points:

3. The CARICOM needs to move forward towards ‘real integration’

1. The CARICOM needs to invest in greater ICT education and advancing the use of technology

ICT EDUCATION

With reference to point one, Ambassador Mungra said: “We have been driving too long on some wrong visions. It is not true that there are a few basic factors of productions; one is the availability of natural resources, but you can have the natural resources and if you don’t have the know-how you cannot process it. Te second thing, you need labour, a major factor of production. But also labour, does not determine the speed of development in a country, because it depends on how much model technology you have. Te third thing, you need the capital. Te capital in terms of money, but also there we have a limitation. What are you going to do with the capital? What kind of investment, in what direction? A country will develop at the speed at which they adapt technology and put it in the labour.”

28 |

CARICOM LOOKS PAST COVID PANDEMIC; STEPS INTO RECOVERY MODE

CARPHA Executive Director

QR-CodeClickwatch?v=H6XhekXMGMshttps://www.youtube.com/thelinkbeloworscantoseetheinterview. | 29

Dr. Joy St. John

Part of this moving past the pandemic entails reopening of countries and that means welcoming travelers. Dr. St. John says its current concerns over COVID-19 cases revolve around the Omicron variant, which she notes while spreads at a rapid rate, the symptoms do not ofen lead severe illness and high death tolls. She adds that key to reopening is keeping in mind not to stop the fow of tourism, or business travel and trade, but knowing that the lessons learnt in the last two years have resulted in an upskilled pool of health care workers, that have strengthened regional health services. Making sure that the region is capable to withstand any COVID uptick through the injection of funds, equipment donations supply materials from agents, giving regional health institutions some bufer room.

REGIONAL PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY

With talks about developing the pharmaceutical industry in the region, Dr. St. John says the current Caribbean regulatory system can support any development manufacturing capacities by ensuring what is being manufactured is using ‘progenitor products or substances that are up to standard including the fnal product reaching international standard’. At the end of this year, CARPHA will mark a major milestone, the turning of ten as to which Dr. St. John said her team had a list of events carded to mark the occasion among staf. And while she did not want to give away too much on how CARPHA planned to celebrate with its stakeholders, she made sure to tease that there was much to look forward to in months leading up to the occasion.

REOPENING OF COUNTRIES

Dr. St. John says while the region has performed remarkably well in ‘containing frst disease and then fnding the balance between lives and livelihoods’, what matters is the ‘return to economic activity safely’. Part of the presentation included how member states ought to ensure that they not only deal with COVID but build resilience while they recover, with the aim of adding COVID-19 into the list of ‘usual health concerns’. Dr. St. John says over the last two years several programs were put aside, but the time has come to refocus on the usual programming and support economic recovery and development.

Dr. St. John is sure to remind the region that prior to the pandemic, CARPHA has introduced its tourism health program which works a lot with the hospitality industry, not just the hotels. She noted this works at keeping people safe while traveling into the region. But there are some concerns regarding intra-regional transport, as she says there hasn’t been an improvement in this segment of travel as anticipated. And while tourism has bounced back for travel into the region, there also needs to be a reconnection among some countries. Tis has not only afected tourism, but the reentry of drugs into the region.

It’s been two years since the pandemic took hold of the region, however, in 2022 CARICOM heads have regrouped in person to discuss its impact and recovery measures for economic growth, but more so as a public health response. Present for the meeting and deliberations was the Caribbean Public Health Agency, CARPHA’s Executive Director Dr. Joy St. John, who was privy to share with regional leaders just exactly where the Caribbean is in the progression of the pandemic.

REANN Presenter/TalkshowKERSENHOUThost

Presenter/Talkshow host

KIMBERLY RAMKHALAWAN

Having been selected by CMC to work with the DIME Network and CDQ on the ground in Suriname was nothing short of amazing. The team continued to impress me every step of the way with the level of professionalism in coordinating productions, to the quality of the output for the packaged product out for dissemination within minutes throughout the region. I stand proud to say I was part of the team, that welcomed and made me one with them overnight in offering coverage of this year’s event like never before. The layout, set up of studios on-location, edit suites, and structured design of programmed content tailored to the event, made it unique and a breath of fresh air when it came to capturing the Caribbean’s coming together on matters of importance. It provided more than just a glimpse often seen in regular news, but a chance to go in depth with regional movers and shakers on items that affect us all as a region. I believe their work is also testament of the Surinamese hospitality, as every task at hand was done with a smile, making every move, throughout the production process, including back-to-back interviews, appear seamless to guests and hosts alike.

While coverage of this year’s CARICOM Summit was not my first in person, it definitely provided some of my career’s latest highlights and experiences I will treasure for a lifetime. Thank you for the wonderful opportunity and the pleasure of working with your team.

I can undoubtedly say that joining the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC) and DIME Network to offer enhanced regional and international coverage of the 43rd Regular Meeting of the CARICOM Heads of Government here in Suriname has been one of the most educative – and in that sense, rewarding – moments of my adult life. Not only did I learn from the intense and extensive organisation that goes into the production, but I bared witness to the benefit and appreciation such media coverage engendered amongst the delegations but also among average citizens interested in more diverse ways of taking in information.

PETER RICHARDS Editor in Chief CANA News Senior reporter CARICOM Heads of Government meetings

We were provided with content, both visual and text that in the past would have been very difficult to have obtained. I am glad that this collaboration took place. May be now that the Guyana-based CARICOM Secretariat has seen and welcomed the enhanced coverage provided by CMC/Dime, I look forward now to their continued cooperation in the future, so that the region could be fully appraised of the issues confronting us all.

To be quite frank and honest, I never expected the CMC/ Dime coverage to have achieved the success that it did, primarily because as someone who has been covering CARICOM summits for several years, the support shown in Suriname from the regional stakeholders, could best be described as a mirage, a one in a life time occasion. Perhaps it had to do with the fact that not many regional media houses were present in the Dutch-speaking Caribbean Community country and with a plethora of Dutch-speaking media houses, it was therefore necessary for our regional leaders to be seen throughout the Caribbean region and the CMC/Dime partnership provided that Couldavenue. you imagine, having several Prime Ministers sitting down to a live and taped interviews. There are some regional leaders, who regardless of the situation confronting the region, always find it impossible to spend even one min ute to inform the media of their position. Even the |regional technocrats found time to give the region their views on is sues that Caribbean people are worried about, or discussing.

This year marked the frst heads of state meeting at CARICOM level that the United Nations participated in-person, and according to Mr Zulu, it came afer much work with CARICOM’s secretariat and each member state, all while highlighting and attaching itself on the importance of working with the CARICOM. Te Secretary General's visit also followed an invitation from CARICOM’s Secretary General Dr. Carla Barnett, and his virtual participation at the Intercessional Meeting of CARICOM held in Belize earlier this year.

| 33

The arrival, visit and participation of UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres in this year’s CARICOM 43rd Regular Heads of Government Meeting, was dubbed one of the highlights of this year’s gathering, the arrival of UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres. Prior to his touchdown in Paramaribo, Suriname, UN Resident Coordinator Dennis Zulu stopped by at Good Morning Caribbean to give an idea just how much this visit meant to the CARICOM region and likewise the United Nations community.

As to what areas peaked their interest to ensure the UN’s attendance this year, the UN Resident Coordinator mentioned the issue of climate change and how it afects vulnerable states such as coastal areas on the islands, as well as how they can greater support resilience in each country and assist the region coping with the devastation of strong storms and hurricanes, and more recently, the impact of volcanic activity on some islands.

Te United Nations has outlined 17 Sustainable Development Goals that are of paramount importance to countries around the world achieving by the year 2030. Mr Zulu said a majority of these are of critical importance, and many are interlinked with each other, including poverty, gender equality, climate change. He said tackling these issues collectively as a region starts at the CARICOM level.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gP2dVUTS3rkClickthelinkbeloworscanQR-Codetoseetheinterview.

UN Resident Coordinator Dennis Zulu:

FIRST INPARTICIPATIONPERSON UN IN HEADSCARICOMOFSTATE

Professor Naipal is one of the driving forces behind mangrove conservation in the Caribbean. Guterres: “Nature-based solutions – such as preserving mangroves, rainforests and other essential ecosystems – are vital. Te world needs more such initiatives.”

UN SECRETARY-GENERAL ANTÓNIO GUTERRES & PROFESSOR SIEUWNAT NAIPAL IN A MANGROVE PLANTING CEREMONY.

STATEMENT BY THE SECRETARY-GENERAL OF THE OACPS, H.E. MR GEORGES REBELO PINTO CHIKOTI, FOR INTERNATIONAL YOUTH DAY 2022 Secretary-General Chikoti invites the Member States of the OACPS to initiate actions to maximise the potential and the participation of your Nations’ youth, for the beneft of society as a whole; in particular, through the promotion of inclusive strategies in the cultural and creative industries; as well as through research and innovation, environmental activism, entrepreneurship and business.

Professor Sieuwnath Naipal:

Professor Naipal spoke of the number of ways in which the mangroves on the coastal area of Suriname have been compromised by Climate Change. "Since the sea level is rising, and it keeps on rising, and from time to time we have waves coming in with high swells, water sprints into the area, and it may stagnate, it may stop, it may not fow back with the result that the roots are overtopped for days, weeks and even months, and the mangroves die. And when we lose that part, we lose a lot. So we have to fnd ways to protect the Inmangroves."response

to further developments with the mangrove rehabilitation projects in Suriname and the question of fnancing, Professor Naipal spoke of what is needed not only in terms of fnance, but in terms of awareness and international involvement particularly given the visit of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres.

The warning message from Professor of Hydrology and Professor of Water & Climate Change at the Anton de Kom University of Suriname, Dr. Sieuwnath Naipal, stated during the course of the 43rd CARICOM Head of States meeting in Paramaribo, is crystal clear: “Mangroves need to be protected in order for us to protect our coastal land, our fertile land, and our water resources.” Given the threat of Climate Change, sea-level rise, and erosion, the hydrologist warns that the habitation of all people living on low-lying coasts is under threat: Code Red for the Caribbean.

Professor Naipal said, ‘We already have some experience, we have already have built up some skills, and I think now we can scale up – but the scaling up depends on the support that you have. It is not only fnance, it is also supposed to be the people. More and more people need to accept these kinds of concepts. But also you need appropriate technology.’ He explains that: ‘Mangroves are not only for Suriname. It is for the region; it is for the world. And mangroves are not only in Suriname. It is found among more than 100 countries in the world. All these countries including Suriname are supposed to get the support. [Mangroves] do not only support the coast, but do much, much more. It has links with four, fve to six, even ten SDGs, so if you have mangroves in […] in the wider world - that’s what we need to go for.’

POPULATIONSPROTECTMANGROVES

| 37

Click the link below or scan QR-Code to see the watch?v=OIsggO6OIPIhttps://www.youtube.com/interview.

CARICOM Deputy Secretary-General Dr. Armstrong Alexis: DEVELOP MORE MODELSRESILIENCE

1)sessions:CARICOM institutions are producing sound, scientifc knowledge. Dr Alexis explained that ‘many times in the Caribbean, we think that we have to rely on external suppliers of information, or we must get models from outside’. However, he emphasized that the models that have been presented to cope with the issues in the Caribbean are developed by Caribbean people, and what is more, is that they are, in his words, "world-class."

Dr. Alexis listed three major take-aways from the plenary

3) Tere was an exceptional urgency felt throughout the plenary sessions caused by the afermath of COVID-19 and the continued threats due to Climate Change.

2) Te CARICOM member states share a strong and common desire to fnd solutions to the issues that face the region as a collective.

On the second day of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting, a plenary delegates meeting was held entitled, ‘The Paramaribo Conversations’. These conversations were held with The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC), the Caribbean Development Bank (CBD) and the Caribbean Center for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (CCREEE).

CONCESSIONAL FINANCING With regards to the issue of access to concessional fnancing that many CARICOM nations face, the Deputy SecretaryGeneral elucidated the matter by means of a simple example: “If there is one hundred dollars circulating amongst ten people, on average, one can say each person has ten dollars. But this may not necessarily be so. One person may have ninety-fve dollars, and the other fve dollars is lef for the other nine people.” He goes on to say that despite such inequity, the international development fnancing architecture is designed to evaluate whether or not countries receive afordable fnance using such measurements. Given this, Dr Alexis considers the vulnerability and resilience measurement framework developed by the Caribbean Development Bank as pioneering, for it is a measurement that considers the exogenous shocks that countries may face such as the imminent fnancial, security and health issues faced in the Caribbean due to Climate Change. He further remarks that it is exactly these types of issues that have engendered the urgency with which the discussions have been conducted. In addition to the presented models and the issue of Climate Change, the Deputy Secretary-General stated that there were many other agenda points that would still be lef to discuss in greater detail. He highlighted the upcoming discussions surrounding the improvement of relations with the private sector, climate fnancing, governance structure within the CARICOM as a whole, as well as the 50th anniversary of the CARICOM next year. Dr Alexis concluded by saying that “there is still quite a bit on the agenda, and we are certainly looking forward to all those conversations, and to be as, not just optimistic, but also realistic with our agenda and to ensure that the benefts weigh down to the average citizen of the ClickCaribbean.”thelinkbelow or scan QR-Code to see the interview.

Deputy Secretary-General of the CARICOM, Dr. Armstrong Alexis, had the honour of leading and moderating the discussions during the plenary. In conversation with Reann Kersenhout for the Good Morning Caribbean news show, Dr Alexis termed the discussions as healthy, particularly as it relates to issues of resilience, of fnance, and the perils faced due to Climate Change. Dr Alexis expounded that: “Te conversation was to try to put all of this in context in order to develop more resilience models, or models that speak to resilience that the rest of the world can embrace and work towards ensuring that the Caribbean has the wherewithal to be able to withstand and recover from disasters when they do occur.”

| 39

G6ID0xgMohttps://youtu.be/3H

Ute Konig , Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Eastern Caribbean Ute Konig , Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Eastern Caribbean

SAFEGUARD SIDS

Ute Konig, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Eastern Caribbean, based in Trinidad and Tobago, was just one of the many external dignitaries to participate at the meeting held in Paramaribo. According to Ambassador Konig, the signifcance in attending revolved around diplomacy and the chance to deepen those ties with ministerial committees from across the region; and for these, real personal contact is vital to maintaining these relations., especially following the pandemic years, despite the fact CARICOM has had a lot of virtual coordinating meetings. Te ambassador remarked that ever since the Intercessional meeting in Belize, ambassadors like herself have had the opportunity to wield interpersonal relations, meet with people and get a gist of the challenges on the ground and the issues they are having along with the plans they have for the future.

THE 3 C'S & THE 3 F'S COVID, CATASTROPHES & CLIMATE CHANGE. FUEL, FOOD & FINANCE. Click the link below or scan QR-Code to see the watch?v=96tV0_yxnIchttps://www.youtube.com/interview. | 41

For Germany, this year’s topic of Climate change, high on the agenda for CARICOM, has sparked their interest. Ambassor Konig recognizes that Caribbean countries are some of the most vulnerable in the world. So far, the German Embassy has been a great sponsor of the Caribbean diversity fund, the renewable energy program and helping certain countries with their nationally determined contributions, NDCs. Germany has been taking climate issues very seriously. Apart from climate change, Ambassador Konig highlighted the current issue of food security in the region and the impact the war in Europe has had on the entire world. Noting that since the war has arisen, a conference in Berlin was held recently to bring together countries of the world to discuss food security and how her country can help, with particular focus on wheat shortages and fnding alternative routes of transport. During the last three years, the three C’s, COVID, Catastrophes and Climate Change, and the three F’s, Fuel, Food and Finance have dominated. Germany with Egypt have been working together to prepare for the next Climate Change conference, COP, with intentions of having meetings to prepare ahead of the fnancing aspect of these issues. In this round, focused on implementation, the move from words to action takes vital precedent, which includes Caribbean countries also taking their environmental responsibility and their renewable energy seriously, despite the need to earn revenue from what might be a booming energy sector. She noted that Suriname has been one of the few countries that has been carbon negative, and has been vocal on wanting to keep it that way. As the German ambassador, she notes her country recognizes that while the Caribbean has its ambitions, and fnancial needs, at the G20, Germany will be one of the states doing something to safeguard Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in this regard, as it continues along this dialogue. It is also at this level, the question of the new vulnerability index discussed at CARICOM level, will also be presented worldwide.

Ambassadors from across the region saw CARICOM’s 43rd regular heads of government meeting as an opportune time to partake at the CARICOM level, as it was the frst time that many were invited.

Te CARICOM has also been invited to assist at the G20 Summit. Ambassador Konig said, ‘While it may be a virtual participation, it will be active advocacy. Te German Foreign Afairs Minister will continue to look at the impacts in such areas aa Small Island Developing States, SIDS, listening to their concerns and helping to bring that into the international space."

42 |

Coming on the heels of the CARICOM Youth Forum, CARICOM Youth Ambassador (CYA) Corps Dean, Renee Atwell stuck around in Paramaribo Suriname for the CARICOM heads of government meeting, where she sat in plenary sessions and got a chance to witness the event. In an interview with Caribbean Youth Focus presenter Matai Zamuel she spoke on the main topics this year at the Youth Forum and what is needed as a collective region to better assist and provide support for its youth.

CARICOM Youth Ambassador (CYA) Corps Dean Renee Atwell :

A: Well in the CARICOM Youth Forum young persons would have voiced their concerns about mental health. Of course they are concerned that there is still a negative stigma attached to mental health, across persons throughout the region. So one of the main recommendations that we would asked the heads of government to consider would have been to engage in public education campaigns to remove that negative stigma. We think that is extremely important because we have too many young persons who are sufering mental health issues but they might be ashamed to go and actually get help for the issues they actually experience. So, assisting and ensuring that they are able to get that help they need because that stigma is now removed, we think that will greatly assist young persons who may be sufering. Of course, we also think it necessary for persons who work with young persons like schools, the health care centers, to be trained to deal with young persons who have these mental issues. We think yes those are great starting points to help with youth mental health and ensure our young people are healthy and able to contribute positively to society.

ROLE OF YOUTH INNOVATION IN SOCIETY

"We have to create that seat ourselves"

MENTAL HEALTH AMONG THE YOUTH

Q: I think the current Secretary General of CARICOM has underlined the economic importance of Caribbean integration and along with a big part of innovation that is necessary, what is the role of youth you envision in innovating our systems and society.

A: By our nature we are creative and innovative. We always bring a fresh perspective to what is already existing. I think in efort to modernize and innovate, to pursue and to achieve any level of innovation in a society it is very important for governments to include young persons in the process. Other than that it means having consultations, focus groups, where commissions are set up with planning committees where young people are involved because they will be able to bring that fresh perspective and that fresh way of doing things to move things to another level. So I think ensuring that young persons are involved not only in the planning phase but the implementation as well as the monitoring and evaluation that will assist in ensuring youth are involved and can contribute to increase innovation in their member states.

Q: CARICOM is turning 50 years. Are there any visions you have for the next ten years for youth?

A: Most defnitely I would like to see more meaningful engagement with young people. My presence being here at the heads of government meeting I think it is a great starting point. We have a long way to go. Since the start of the declaration of Paramaribo on the future of youth in the Caribbean Community. We still have lots of gaps in terms of implementing what has been agreed upon previously by member states. I mean at the heads of government there should be more young persons that myself here and we can actually sit in the plenaries. Its not necessary that we need to have a say on each and every thing, but sit down and see what its like, experience, whether you are attending with a delegation you know you have a say and you are able to contribute to the decision-making process.

PROGRESS FOR YOUTH IN NEXT TEN YEARS

Q: You and I were both in attendance at the Caribbean Youth Forum where the importance of mental health was highlighted. How do you see or what is the way forward for the CARICOM in promoting mental wellbeing?

A: My message to those young persons would be to fnd a space. If a seat is not put for you at the table, you have to create that seat and you have to make space for yourself. You know sometimes we just cannot sit and depend on, for example, our government to do everything for us. We are young adults, we are innovative, we are creative and we can tap into various resources whether it be the private sector, civil society, international organizations, and we could utilize those avenues to create space for ourselves. And then hopefully we are able to accomplish a signifcant amount of goals through that and to mobilize and empower other young persons in the process. We have to create that seat ourselves.

Because when you have young persons, those persons who are in power and those who are the heads of government, they wont be the heads of government forever, some persons have to come afer them, but if opportunities are not provided for young people to see what the process is like then you are going to have new leaders come into light and not know what to do. So I defnitely would like to see more meaningful youth engagement. I would like to see more opportunities created for young persons to participate in negotiations at the highest level. No more tokenism. Young people are at the place where we are saying you know, we no longer want to be used to be a declaration or sit down, (no more youth washing Matai). Exactly we want to be provided with meaningful opportunities to contribute when we make suggestions, we want our suggestions to be taken into account. I would defnitely like to see more investment in youth, fnancial and otherwise. CREATING SPACES TO BE HEARD

“I WOULD LIKE TO SEE MORE OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOUNG PERSONS TO PARTICIPATE IN NEGOTIATIONS AT THE HIGHEST LEVEL. NO MORE TOKENISM. YOUNG PEOPLE ARE AT THE PLACE WHERE WE ARE SAYING YOU KNOW, WE NO LONGER WANT TO BE USED TO BE A DECLARATION OR SIT DOWN.”

CREATED

Q: Miss Atwell, before we end this session, I would like to convey to you what many of the youth I have spoken with over the last few weeks have said, they believe that they don’t have a role anymore, that governments don’t listen to them, that they don’t have a way of speaking up. What is your message to those youth?

Click the link below or scan QR-Code to see the watch?v=74kEL1jxutohttps://www.youtube.com/interview.

YOUTH

Blinker visited the set of Caribbean Connect and Kimberly Ramkhalawan asked her a few questions on her inspiration behind ‘Caribbean Seas’, and her thoughts on celebrating Caribbean culture while embracing and passing it on to the next generation.

A: Te answer is simple. Look at the leaders, its leading by example. I mean you don’t children what to do, they look at you and they do what you do. So let’s start frst. Tat’s why I say the backyard. We have a lot of leaders talking a lot, but when we look at what they doing. We get a headache. But then for the arts, I say take that for the art and resonate. Tat is the wonderful thing about art. So I think its leading by example. Everything that you do and success is not about having the big range rover and the big house. Success is every time you do something its better, and thinking and especially in self. Self-sufciency, but self-sufciency comes with the community mindedness, we need to resound. We are a paradise. You know Europe and the states used us as a playground for centuries, what does that say? Tat means we are paradise, so what we have in front of us we need to have that blind of, and the problem is most of the time is this. I’d leave it there.

A: We need to take art as business. Me as an artist, what I experience is a lack of recognition, a lack of worth. You know when you come with a price, there is the yeh, but you too expensive, and when you look at the lighting man, that is frst of all. In Suriname I am into talent development I am busy with the youth, but talent development is not the only thing, because we have a lot of education that is told is art, but when we fnished we need to get profled. We need to get ready to be entrepreneurs in that. When we look at the funds that we get from abroad is just like the banks, there are so many glitches and bureaucracies that don’t allow us to move as an art movement and if we would unite as a people in the Caribbean and we would be one voice as in art, they cannot shun away. So there is the strength and I believe that is possible. And I believe that all of us make beautiful things, but in the end its about being heard.

Q: We have such a rich diverse culture as individual states and as a Caribbean collectively. How do we teach and train this generation to appreciate what we have and to really own it as ours, rather than gravitating to what’s out there?

Q: You are considered a visionary in Suriname, listening to you alone, that platform says you have captivated an audience, how do you see the arts being part of the social change that is needed in our countries, in our individual communities?

Clickhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1r5wY2EWbVsthelinkbeloworscanQR-Codetoseetheinterview.

If you tuned into the opening ceremony of the CARICOM 43rd Regular Heads of Government Meeting, you would have heard Suriname Poet and Spoken word artist Zulile Blinker. Her piece titled Caribbean seas, caught the attention of Caribbean leaders and caused them to sing much high praises for her passionate message which resonated with every Caribbean citizen regardless of their ethnicities, religion or background.

Q&A with: Spoken word artist Zulile Blinker

The production team of DIME Network Business Channel pulled out all the stops for the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting held in Paramaribo, Suriname. In addition to introducing the regional media brands Good Morning Caribbean (a morning news show), Caribbean Connect (a talk show) and Caribbean Youth Focus (a youth news program), a broadcast audio package has been developed specially for this occasion.

FROM LOCAL NEWS TUNE TO REGIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL

D’Orkest

“D’Orkest is a very small, wholesome band and we want to show the world that Suriname has a lot more to ofer,” says Joey Healy, the leader of the band.

“WE KNOW CARIBBEAN MUSICIANS ARE EXTREMELY TALENTED AND THE CARIBBEAN SONG FESTIVAL IS A GREAT WAY TO CELEBRATE AND HONOUR OUR EXTRAORDINARILY TALENTED MUSICIANS AND SONGWRITERS, WHILE ALSO SHARING MORE OF OUR RICH MUSIC CULTURE WITH THE WORLD.”

“We are not just a specifc genre band. We considers oruselves a world band. We can play any genre; we can connect with anyone through music. So it’s not just a Caribbean thing, it’s a world thing for us. And we were honoured to be asked to make the CARICOM Head of Government broadcasting tune. At frst, it seemed difcult, but we love challenges.” Band leader Healy is encouraging CARICOM leaders to facilitate collaborations between diferent CARICOM countries to create new music genres and new music styles – an idea that the CARICOM Secretary General encouraged in her interview on the Caribbean Connect talk show. It would be quite the festivity to arrange for a regional music festival with musician artistes from across the Caribbean performing simultaneously on stage for the 50th Anniversary of the CARICOM next year.

“We are not just a specifc genre band. We considers ourselves a world band. We can play any genre; we can connect with anyone through music. So it’s not just a Caribbean thing, it’s a world thing for us. And we were honoured to be asked to make the CARICOM Head of Government broadcasting tune. At frst, it seemed difcult, but we love challenges.”

WE LOVE CHALLENGES

DIME Network CEO Daniella Tauwnaar, says that working on the CARICOM enhanced media sound package sparked the idea to reintroduce the Caribbean Song festival from back in the days - the Caribbean version of the Eurovision Song festival. “We know Caribbean musicians are extremely talented and the Caribbean Song festival would be a great way to celebrate and honour our extraordinarily talented musicians and songwriters, while sharing more of our rich music culture with the world.”

Tere is news.” Ti is the wignifcance of the Apintie.

This package extracted tunes from an original musical piece created by an eleven-man orchestra with the eponymous name, D'Orkest. Te tune is mixed and mastered by famous music engineer Ernesto van Dal, known for his contributions to Suripop, the highly-regarded Surinamese composers’ festival, . Te broadcast package tune produced by D’Orkest has an Indian favoured sound with Maroon infuences. One of the instruments, the Apintie drum – a single-headed percussion instrument historically played by Surinamese Maroons – is utilized as a recurring element within the song, alongside the Indian fute. Band member Jamey explains: "Te reason we chose for an Indian inspired song is because the biggest population in Suriname are the Indians. With this music element we want to honour this. About the Apintie drum, back in the days, when there was no technology, the Apintie signifed that there is news to be heard, news to be told. So if you hear the Apintie drum you knew something happened, and then all the people would gather.

CARICOM Secretary General Dr. Carla Barnett says there will be several high-level celebrations, with member states slotted to host events surrounding "arts, culture, music and intellectual discussions among the various sectors of societies." Te events will be planned among the Secretariat and the CARICOM Ambassadors of each member country.

CARICOM Secretary General, Dr.Carla Barnett, visited the CMC Media Centre on location at this year’s meeting to share her thoughts when she sat down at the Caribbean Connect studio right afer the ofcial closing press conference of this year’s meeting.

Discussions revolved around collaboration between both secretariats, the OACPS and CARICOM, especially on the area of reparations.

Next year, the CARICOM will commemorate its 50th anniversary. The celebrations are billed around the next Regular meeting in July 2023, hosted by Dominica.

See the full interview with Dr. Barnett here: Te next in-person meeting of the CARICOM Head of States, the Intersessional meeting, will take place in Te Bahamas in February 2023. Meetings might have wrapped up and been dubbed successful following CARICOM’s 43rd Regular Heads of Government Meeting held in Paramaribo, Suriname, but the question on everyone’s mind that remained, is, 'What's next?'

CARICOM

Te 43rd Regular Heads meeting saw several external dignitaries participate, including United Nation’s Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, whose visit Dr. Barnett says works well for CARICOM, as she believes he serves as an advocate on behalf of small island developing states such as Caribbean nations and "one who looks afer the issues of critical importance in the region."

In conversation with presenter Kimberly Ramkhalawan, Dr.Barnett said outcomes from this year’s meeting agenda saw how clearer defnitions of categories of people worked in streamlining their movement within CARICOM states, as well as the mobilizing of climate fnance access for the region, a strategy she says "is based on organizing its approach to the regional community and strengthening the capacity at the national level for implementing climate projects."

Dr. Barnett shared the importance of intervention from regional youth in this year’s meeting, through the Caribbean Youth Forum held two weeks prior to the meeting. While noting that this was something all together new to the CARICOM meeting, she "highlighted the critical role youth play in determining their own destiny" with an assurance of follow ups on how this plays out.

SECRETARY GENERAL DR. CARLA BARNETT LOOKS FORWARD TO 50 YEARS CARICOMQR-CodeClickwatch?v=8uNFq6Vufxghttps://www.youtube.com/JUBILEEthelinkbeloworscantoseetheinterview. 48 |

Also present was the Secretary-General of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacifc States (OACPS), formerly the ACP Group of States, Georges Rebelo Pinto Chikoti.

In•••••day?thestillforestedwilderness

‘Cause Cambridge and the courts are sequestered –covid-cloistered

In these Diogenes-tic days

Draws questions and open derisions

Computed on the boob tube

Ban, ban, Cali-ban Ban, ban, Cali-be-an Yap'yapi no deh in a bon moro

In a den full of gold and a fst full of dollars

Wij zitten vast EgteFasi fasi Pe w’ e lon go? Home still feels best Ma’ ala sani e go molo fala

With, without topping – any form, choice or combo Where do we turn my love

All too many Soaped and sopping –If not tipsy, fying high in the couldn’t-care-less sky

Over the crumbs of a new masra-heisted cofer

Inching closer to the mirage of promised wealth

Maybe wan langa tyuri Who de hell do you think am I, could follow

But Marley and Garvey are no more Martin, Dobru and Kamau have also exited the stage And for all the chagrin-ers and admire-ers So has Cheddi, Linden, Lach, Fidel, Busta, Errol, Manley, Eric, Rodney, Hugo –Cacique and Boni, all the like, could follow soon Jean and Dinah can no longer pose with Sparrow and Clementine

Do we remain together –Simple – true to each other, my love, Or does Self abandonment overtake us too on the eve of a new cloudy

ititit“Itisis not it is not enough it is not enough to be free … to be able to fy … to be semicolon; to be semicolony;…. My people are leaderless” …

a shrill voice cries aloud

CrashFranz-styleopen the doors – take your pick

In these days where the corals and clod and clouds are talking Moh louda now, shangoing with ill-luminations and Fresherthunderstorms

A burgher to order and go now at deh deli

With compassion in a ruthless world, Merciless at each other’s throats

Spin-doctors adding zeros each passing half-moon

LINES COMPOSED FOR THE 2022 CARICOM CONFERENCE PARAMARIBO, SURINAME

Inebriated now with lube and gas

To tell our people live decently and follow wisely

Where a wise sober leader is sought

Come in now from the col’!

As the show of an era has closed So where do we turn, my love

Are we to join the wretched of the earth

To tell your leaders, lead by example, instead of precept Is anathema – could cost you the gallows –

So, come closer, my love: Our new-to-be-born inherits no identity Albeit, she he it we they

Charybdis-Scylla-strongbrewing –Where do we turn, my love? East or west?

Scufing as usual

As we go a-jour-ney-ing, in-to dys-to-pia A hollow ir-reality Grounded in nero-ic hedonisms. ItIt is It is not It is not enough In these new dark times, my love Such AndShouldcannotnotneverwill sufce But who among the aspiring leaders will don truth Dreads and sackcloth Sitting down brown in penitent silica sands Not, just-now But today Ti-deTi-de ti-de Kwayana style InAnewAfreshEntrammelledAndLateTu-tu-tu-tuTwoItItItItBeforeisistootu-tuwearealgorithmic cyber chains Chattelled bots, sanitized AgainLost a-glorying in deh mas’a dough, reparative! ItItNo!No!No!isis not It is not •••••enough! We, the forgotten, freighted with Earth’s wealth Whose inner secret truth – veined crystalline delvesnow Gloating,drawgreed-flled eyes, jealous Hideous hebi mid countless kunu –We must stand tall now, heads held high As Ai’s ebony-blissed ‘ching And spawn a new InLeadersChildrenPeoplefresh-watered lily-wombs In earthen-baked clay homes In green sun-paneled villages In communities strewn with our cocos-palms, kra-basi Podosiri acai Tulsi, kwasi, kusuwe and neem trees Enlightened – aware TFirstat care Tat love Tat serve Tat ✴Carib-being!NewOfInAtToFearlessWillinglysacrifcethebonethecoreourheartsa••••• ✴ yap' yapi = monkey bon = tree tyuri = “suck teeth” pe w’ e lon go = where will we run to hebi = heavy weights tide = today ‘ching = child (Inspired by Kamau B, Martin C, and other Cali-be-an voices) Ivan A. Khayiat © 22 June 2022 – (5)

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Press Conference with CARICOM Secretary-General

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Opening Ceremony

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Press Conference with UN Secretary-General

OnDescription:SundayJuly 3, 2022, the opening ceremony of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting was held at the Assuria Event’s Centre. In attendance were the majority of the CARICOM heads of governments, specially invited guests and other dignitaries.Link:https://youtu.be/tf2SW-jhsPU

OnDescription:theevening before the start of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting in Paramaribo, Suriname a press conference was held with the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres and the president of the Republic of Suriname, H.E. Chandrikapersad Santokhi at the presidential palace.Link: https://youtu.be/VgS9hM3RHgA

OnDescription:SundayJuly 3, 2022, the opening ceremony of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting was held at the Assuria Event’s Centre. In attendance were the majority of the CARICOM heads of governments, specially invited guests and other dignitaries.Link:https://youtu.be/0yut5P--3h8

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Order of the Caribbean Community Award Ceremony

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Opening Ceremony Part 2

52 |

OnDescription:Saturday, July 2, 2022 a press conference was held with the CARICOM Secretary-General, Dr. Carla Barnett, president of the Republic of Suriname, H.E. Chandrikapersad Santokhi, and Minister of Foreign Afairs, International Business, and International Cooperation of the Republic Suriname, H.E. Albert Ramdin ahead of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting.Link:https://youtu.be/WjsqnZ6GlGQ

DuringDescription:the opening ceremony of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting in Paramaribo, Suriname, the Order of the Caribbean Community Award has been presented to Sir Isaac Vivian Alexander Richards, Dame Billie Miller, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque, and David Rudder. Link: https://youtu.be/yxKa5Y9bB28

The Good Morning Caribbean is a regional news show produced by DIME Network in collaboration with the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Interview with Zulile Blinker

TDescription:emusicthat accompanied the Good Morning Caribbean and Caribbean Connect shows were created by a Surinamese eclectic band called D’Orkest. In an interview with Joey and Jamey from the band, insights were given into the inspiration behind the creation and the band’s thoughts on music development within the region.

Link: https://youtu.be/rxHP1SlkhjI

| 53

TDescription:eMinister of Foreign Afairs, International Business, and International Cooperation of the Republic Suriname, H.E. Albert Ramdin led the organisation of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting. In an interview with Kimberly Ramkhalawan, the Minister spoke about the signifcance of this event and what could have been expected during the conference.Link: https://youtu.be/06Hjt6yNxes

UNDescription:Resident Coordinator for Suriname, Mr. Dennis Zulu spoke in an interview with Kimberly Ramkhalawan about the working relationships between the UN and the CARICOM secretariaat and noted the very relevant agenda points of the 43rd CARICOM Heads of Government Meeting.

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Interview with H.E. Albert Ramdin

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Interview with Dennis Zulu

RecentlyDescription:elected Prime Minister of Grenada, the honourable Dickon Mitchell and the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne sat down for a Caribbean Connect interview during which they discussed a number of topics signifcant to the Caribbean region.Two of such topics included the governance structure of the CARICOM and the matter of air transportation following the afermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.Link: https://youtu.be/kyUjpaVp--k

Link: https://youtu.be/i_PeAXEb68w

Interview with D’Orkest

Interview with Dickon Mitchell and Gaston Browne

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN

Link: https://youtu.be/qPAIFyMWZdY

InDescription:aninterview with Kimberly Ramkhalawan, spoken word artist, writer, host, and creative director, Zulile Blinker, spoke about the inspiration behind her spoken word piece entitled ‘Caribbean Seas’ which she performed at the opening ceremony of the 43rd CARICOM Heads of Government Meeting and shared some of her thoughts on the development of art and culture within the region.

Link: https://youtu.be/b_RSh92i4_o

InDescription:aninterview with Kimberly Ramkhalawan for the Caribbean Connect Talkshow, Secretary-General of CARICOM, Dr. Carla Barnett made reference to the 50th anniversary of CARICOM in July 2023 and what is to be expected from the anticipated celebrations. Noteworthily, Dr. Barnett stressed the incorporation of art and culture.

InDescription:aninterview with Kimberly Ramkhalawan for the Caribbean Connect Talkshow, Secretary-General of CARICOM, Dr. Carla Barnett spoke of the productivity of the 43rd CARICOM Heads of Government Meeting and made special mention of a CARICOM youth intervention represented by the Dean of the CARICOM Youth Ambassador (CYA) Corps.

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Tree Planting Ceremony & Final Press Conference

OnDescription:thelast day of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting, the CARICOM delegations participated in a tree planting ceremony in celebration of CARICOM Day on July 4th. In the evening, a closing press conference was hosted in which the Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, the honourable Ralph Gonsalves, delved into the proposed energy plans and rising oil prices.

Interview with the Hon. Mia Mottley

Link: https://youtu.be/U3-_k9XvTnc

54 |

InDescription:aninterview with Kimberly Ramkhalawan for the Caribbean Connect Talkshow, President of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana, H.E. Dr. Irfaan Ali spoke about the type of commitment that has progressed in achieving greater food security and reducing the region’s food importation bill by 25% by the year 2025.Link:

Interview with Dr. Carla Barnett

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Interview with H.E. Dr. Irfaan Ali

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Interview with Dr. Carla Barnett Part 2

https://youtu.be/_NTKhzzVA4s

InDescription:aninterview with Reann Kersenhout for the Caribbean Connect Talkshow, the Prime Minister of Barbados, the honourable Mia Amor Mottley put forward one of the concrete decisions that came out of the 43rd CARICOM Heads of Government Meeting as it relates to the developments related to the CARICOM Single Market and Economy.

Link: https://youtu.be/qaF5p8rlWgA

GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN

Link: https://youtu.be/VoEjv_EwVSQ

Morning Walk BeforeDescription:thestart of the business sessions of the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting, all delegates were invited by the President of the Republic of Suriname, H.E. Chandrikapersad Santokhi to a morning walk through the city-centre of Paramaribo in line with the theme: ‘A Healthy Caribbean on a Healthy Planet’. https://youtu.be/MhtnYMF8Tcs

Alexis TDescription:ePlenaryDelegates Meeting at the 43rd CARICOM Regular Heads of Government Meeting included presentations and discussion rounds with representatives from the Caribbean Development Bank, the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre, and the Caribbean Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efciency. In an interview, Dr. Armstrong Alexis, Deputy Secretary-General of the CARICOM, shared a few remarks on what was deliberated. MORNING CARIBBEAN

Check out more Episodes on our YouTube Channel: DIME Network Business https://www.youtube.com/c/DIMENetworkyourbusinesschannelChannelStayconnectedwithus: GOOD MORNING CARIBBEAN Plenerary Delegates Meeting & Interview with Dr. Armstrong

Link:

LinkedIn: DIME Network dime-network-limited/https://www.linkedin.com/company/Limited Instagram: DIME Network work_ltd/https://www.instagram.com/dime_netLTD | 55

Link: https://youtu.be/3HG6ID0xgMo GOOD

4. CMC is a one-stop-shop to clients wishing to engage customers regionally and or globally via our various platforms - cable and terrestrial television stations, radio, print and new media services

10. CMC can provide communication and visibility services to its partners and to funding agencies as a knowledgebase partner.

3. CMC’s services comprise of broadcasts on terrestrial television, radio, cable and IP distribution, satellite uplink distribution, print and new media services to the Caribbean, north America and around the world.

8. CaribVision is an information and lifestyle channel broadcasting a variety of culturally rich and entertaining programming which includes news, current afairs, sports, drama and lifestyle shows.

7. CMC launched a pan-Caribbean channel, CaribVision in 2006.

5. CMC’s objective is to become the local, regional and international media partner of choice for our clients,

thus positioning them in achieving and maintaining a leadership role in their respective markets.

9. CaribVision is “Te Eyes and Ears of the Caribbean”.

6. CMC is the sole owner of CANANews, one of the region’s oldest and most credible regional news and sports content providers.

1. CMC was formed in August 2000 as a result of a merger between the commercial operations of the Caribbean News Agency and the Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU).

2. CMC is the region’s leading multimedia organization dedicated to excellence in communication service.

10 FACTS ABOUT

DIME Network Business Channel Your Bes Moent o Screen Our company is based in Suriname (South America) and operates internationally. For us sustainability is a must. In everything we do – on and of screen -, we propagate the need for nature preservation and the safeguarding of cultural heritage. OUR TEAM We are a proud and hardworking team. Small in quantity, big in quality. We respect, value and complement each other on the job. We gladly collaborate with a wide range of other professionals and enjoy the fruit of our peoplecentered and service oriented nature. ‘Your Best Moment on Screen’ is attained through deliberate team efort. CONNECT WITH US • Website: www.dime.network • LinkedIn: DIME Network Limited • Email: contact@dime.network AS A MEDIA PRODUCTION COMPANY WE FOCUS ON: • Creating a memorable experience on set, to • Bring the best out of our valued guests, hence • Delivering high-quality content for a global audience ON AND OFF SCREEN WE TREASURE: • Nature • Art • Culture OUR MOBILE STUDIO CONCEPT ALLOWS FOR: • Unique studio set ups, producing • Customized content, for clients • In various parts of the world WE PRODUCE: • Audiovisual productions • Audio productions • Digital & Print productions WE PROVIDE: • Media & Communication consults • Image & Public Speaking consults • Event planning consults OUR STORY DIME Network Ltd. is founded in March 2017 by former Journalist and Media & Communication specialist Daniëlla Tauwnaar. Through DIME Network Business Channel, Daniëlla – known by many as Magen - shares her passion for the art of media and the science of communications. “Every time, it is challenge and an honour to provide people and organizations a unique and customized platform to share their story with the world. Our motto ‘Your Best Moment on Screen’ is at the heart of what we do, and the reason why we are so invested in building memorable sets and sincere relationships with our clients and guests”, states the DIME Network Founder & CEO.

Daniëlla Tauwnaar MBA Founder & CEO of DIME Network

CMC and DIME Network say ‘Gran Tangi’ (a big Tank You in Surinamese language) to our amazing crews in Suriname, Barbados and Trinidad, our hardworking presenters from abroad, our dedicated technical team, writers and editors, our distinguished guests and everyone who supported us in pioneering and realizing this collaboration initiative. A Special Tanks to our passionate Director of Photography Rafck Bottse from CDQ Universal. Your Trusted Partners in the Region. | Recover Art Gallery | Torarica Group | Roelie's Lighting & Decor | Mac Intosh Media | Galaxy Woninginrichting | MINES Services NV | Brotherhood Security | CDQ Universal | Jumbo Ofce Supplies | SPECIAL THANKS FROM CMC & DIME NETWORK

Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.