(JIS) — The Barbadian Government has indicated that it will remove the visa requirements for Haitians travelling to that country as it seeks to be more inclusive in its treatment of Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nationals.
Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley, said the visa stipulation “breaches the fundamental tenets that bind us together under the revised Treaty of Chaguaramas”.
“Those tenets relate to non-discrimination and relate to not treating anyone outside of the community in a more favourable manner than we treat each other in the community,” she said.
Mottley was addressing the opening ceremony for the 39th Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of CARICOM on Wednesday at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in St James.
She pointed out that this arrangement is unfair, given that people who are not members of the community are allowed to travel freely into the Caribbean without visas, and that Haiti “took the extraordinary step of signing the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas and committing to a CARICOM single market and single economy”.
The Revised Treaty establishing CARICOM, including the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME), was signed in 2001.
Among the objectives are improved standards of living and work in member countries; accelerated, coordinated and sustained economic development; and an organisation for increased production and productivity.
The meeting of the CARICOM Heads is being held from July 4 to 6. Among the key agenda items are crime and violence, disaster management and climate change, and the CSME.