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CASTRIES, St. Lucia, Mar 20, CMC – Britain’s decision to leave the European Union as well as the ongoing negotiations for a successor to the Cotonou Convention are among issues that will be discussed when ministers from the Caribbean Forum (CARIFORUM) meet here on Thursday.
The two-day 25th meeting of the Council of Ministers of CARIFORUM will also be discussing a number of issues including the implementation of the CARIFORUM-European Union Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) that was signed in 2008.
St. Lucia chairs the CARIFORUM grouping that consists of the 15-member Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the Dominican Republic.
The European Commission is likely to oppose British membership of the European Union to June 30 as being asked for by Prime Minister Theresa May.
In a letter to European Council President Donald Tusk, the British Prime Minister said the Brexit process “clearly will not be completed before 29 March, 2019” – the date fixed in law two years ago for Britain’s departure.
According to a statement issued ahead of the two-day meeting here, CARIFORUM was established to manage and coordinate relations between the Caribbean states which are signatory to the Cotonou Convention.
Its remit includes programming and managing implementation of regional resources made available to the Caribbean region by the European Union (EU) through the European Development Fund (EDF).
It also includes coordinating the implementation of the CARIFORUM-European Union Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), managing CARIFORUM-EU Political Dialogue and promoting Intra-CARIFORUM Cooperation.
The Council of Ministers usually meets twice yearly.