Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Senator, the Hon. Maxine McClean, will attend the Thirty-First Special Meeting of the Council for the Trade and Economic Development (COTED) on External Negotiations and the Sixth Meeting of the CARIFORUM Council of Ministers on External Trade Negotiations. These meetings will be held in Georgetown, Guyana from February 27 to March 3.

The special COTED meeting will consider the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Draft Negotiation Brief for the CARICOM-Canada Negotiations for a Trade and Development Agreement. It will also examine the Implementation of the CARIFORUM-EC Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).

Barbados, along with the Member States of CARICOM, is seeking to redefine its trading relationship with Canada in the hope of securing a more mature and long lasting arrangement. The decision to renegotiate this relationship with Canada was taken at the Sixth CARICOM-Canada Summit in Jamaica, in January 2001 and arises mainly from a changing perception in the multilateral arena as it pertains to unilateral trade arrangements.

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