Thursday 21 August 2014
A new commentary has been posted. It is entitled: Kamla is right: Joint Caribbean action vital to ensure no health crisis. The commentary supports a call by the Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, for a special meeting of Caribbean leaders to co-ordinate a response particularly to the Ebola virus that has ravaged West Africa. The costs for African countries have gone far beyond medical treatment and includes harsh effets on businesses, productivity and tourism. The Caribbean can ill afford the problem. In this context, it is right to act to avert a crisis.
The Ebola virus has ravaged parts of West Africa
The previous commentary is: Scotland's Independence: Should the Commonwealth Caribbean care? It argues that :while Scotland will be a medium-sized state operating on the margins of the big countries, the UK will also be diminished. The extraction of Scotland from the economy of Britain would significantly reduce the UK’s ranking in the world’s largest economies from 6th where it currently stands to 10th – falling behind Brazil, Italy, Russia and India. This would call into question Britain’s pre-eminent position in the UN Security Council, the IMF and World Bank, and even organisations such as the Commonwealth. The Commonwealth Caribbean should care about a weak Britain in the world.
Alex Salmond leader of the Scottish Nattional Party
Another commentary is: No Caribbean appetite for a Rum fight. It notes that despite several calls for a robust response from CARICOM governments, inlcuding a challenge at the World Trade Organisation, two multinational rum producing companies located in the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico are displacing rums manufactured in Caricom countries in the US market based on huge subsidies. CARICOM governments have failed to act together to stop this unfair advantage showing no appetite for a Rum fight even though they will lose jobs and revenue.
The previous commentary is: China casts a long shadow over Japan-CARICOM talks. It argues that considerations of China's role in the Caribbean's development and its current situation of animosity with Japan will affect the discussions between Japan and CARICOM countries although it will not be mentioned officially. In the event, the talks with the Japanese Premier present an opportunity to lay out the challenges CARICOM economies face by the the onerous policies of international institutions in which Japan has a strong voice.
Japanese Prime Minister, the Mexican President and their wives at the start of a five nation tour of Latin America and the Caribbean by the Japnese Premier