JIS News

Executive Director of the Mona School of Business at the University of the West Indies (UWI), Professor Neville Ying has emphasized that it was important for all to educate themselves about the roots of the Caribbean Single Market and the Economy (CSME), in particular, the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas.
Professor Ying said such knowledge was critical to meaningful discussions on the subject.
He was addressing a public forum on the opportunities for wealth creation within the CARICOM Single Market and Economy, which was hosted by the University Council of Jamaica (UCJ), in collaboration with the University of Technology (UTech), yesterday (February 6), at UTech’s Old Hope Road campus.
Professor Ying said that the forum was timely, as it coincided with the inaugural Joint Prime Ministerial sub-committee meeting on the CSME, which ended on February 6 in Montego Bay.
He also cited last month’s Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) conference, where issues related to the CSME and wealth creation and management were discussed. Also included in the discussions, he said, was a programme to establish a Caribbean Stock Exchange.
“The second important issue (discussed) was the need for public education to influence the disposition of more persons in the society, to get into the habit of saving and investing, and the third area that was looked at is the need for harmonization of laws and procedures, that would facilitate the establishment of the CSME,” he said.
Detailing several measures that have so far been implemented with respect to the CSME, he noted that cross-listing of shares had begun, with some Jamaican firms now listed on the stock exchanges of other CARICOM states, such as Trinidad and Tobago. Also, businesses from other Caribbean countries have listed on the JSE. In addition, local firms have established offices in other states.
“The next very important happenings are pan-regional investments. Many Jamaican firms are investing and setting up operations in other parts of the region. This has been most evident in tourism and the financial services,” Dr. Ying said. He noted that companies from other countries were also operating in Jamaica.
The CSME aims to create a single economic space involving the free movement of people, goods and capital across a borderless space. The Single Market phase was effected in January 2006, with Barbados, Belize, Jamaica, Guyana, Surinam, and Trinidad and Tobago as the first full members.
On July 3, 2006, the membership increased to 12 when Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines became full members. The Single Economy phase is scheduled for implementation in 2008.