According to Caribbean 360, “Caribbean Community (CARICOM) member states have been allocated €3.45 million to help enhance their capacity to further implement the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).

The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) is to administer the funds, which have been provided through a contribution agreement with the European Union (EU), according to a media release issued recently by the bank.

The beneficiaries of the funds will be the CARICOM member states which comprise CDB’s borrowing member countries, and Suriname.

The funds will be held in a CSME Standby Facility, which will support CSME implementation at the national level.  Under the terms of this agreement, the EU will disburse the funds to CDB, based on verifiable demand.  It is expected that each CARICOM member state will receive at least one grant under the Facility.

These funds are to be used for customised projects aimed at such things as building the administrative capacity of national administrations/agencies involved in CSME implementation, recruitment of short-term consultants and public education.

The implementation period of the Facility will be for three years, however, an extension is possible once both parties agree, stated the CDB release.

According to the findings of a study commissioned by the CARICOM Heads of Government in 2009, the sustainable implementation and effective operation of the CSME is threatened by inadequate capacity, institutions, administrative practices and procedures, and technical facilities and services in the region, noted the CDB in the release.”

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Source: Caribbean 360, News Around The Caribbean.