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President of the Jamaica Agricultural Society (JAS), Senator Norman Grant, has called for Caribbean Countries to create alliances especially in the area of agricultural trade, as this would ensure the region’s competitiveness in the global economy, and more importantly ensure the region’s food security. Noting that a contingent of dignitaries from 14 Caribbean countries was expected at this year’s Denbigh Agricultural Show, Senator Grant said the event could provide an opportunity for Caribbean countries to forge regional alliances.
Speaking at a recent JIS Think Tank, Senator Grant, said it was important for Caribbean countries to partner and network with each other, in the area of agriculture, especially those countries that were part of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME), noting that such partnership would be beneficial to the Caribbean economy.
“What we are seeing. as a result of the advent of the CSME is certain challenges that the region faces,” he noted, adding, “Intra-regional trade, is still struggling to get to double digits. and it simply means that most of the consumption that takes place within the CARICOM market .is supplied by different trading ‘blocs’ from outside of the region”.
“What we are hoping that Denbigh will do,” he emphasised, “is facilitate collaboration among the agricultural and manufacturing players within the region, to see how we can work together and take back the market that we have lost to the different trading blocs and I see Denbigh giving us a tremendous opportunity for networking and sharing information”.
Countries that are part of the Caribbean Farmers Association Network (CaFAN) expected at this year’s event include Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Bermuda, St. Martin, Grenada, Curacao and Guyana.
Ten 4-H Caribbean Council members including club leaders and clubbites are also expected to attend the event; among them are Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Dominica and St. Kitts.
The contingent from the Caribbean 4-H Clubs will afford patrons the opportunity to view their various displays, and showcase their agricultural and home economic talents. The show will kick off at the Denbigh Showground, in May Pen on July 30 through to August 1.