A joint declaration has been issued on the fourth summit of heads of state and government of Caricom and of the Central American Integration system (SICA).
Reaffirming their commitment to strengthening relations, coordinating on issues of mutual interest on the regional and international agendas as well as recognizing the transformative force of regional integration in achieving inclusive sustainable development outcomes are some of the major excerpts from the summit.
A High-Level Technical Committee of CARICOM and Central American Integration System (SICA) countries has been established to coordinate and monitor the implementation and evaluation of the CARICOM – SICA Plan of Action.
Following more than a decade since the last meeting of the heads of the two sub-regions, agreements on integrating climate resilience and pursuing joint advocacy for enhancing access to climate finance were some of the major decisions made at the meeting held last Thursday in Belize.
Prior to the joint declaration, CARICOM Chair and Belize Prime Minister, John Breciño said the efforts to strengthen cooperation and engagement between CARICOM and SICA had been less than satisfactory.
The CARICOM Chair noted that considering the common plights faced and many opportunities for collaboration missed such a status quo must change.
He said the covid-19 pandemic has exposed the fragility of development gains among countries in the two sub regions pushing too many of the citizens into poverty.
Thus recognizing the shared goals of sustainable development, multilateralism as well as similar challenges of climate change, Breciño said without question the case for a closer partnership between CARICOM and SICA is compelling and urgent.
The CARICOM Chair says the possibilities for inter-regional trade and cross-regional investments are clear and obvious as the two sub-regions have a collective population of 60 million and collective GDP of 400 billion.
This too was recognized during the summit and included in the joint declaration.