In a recent interview in St. Kitts, Dr. Ishmael indicated that persons generally are proud of the accomplishments of the nine-member grouping, which has a single currency (Eastern Caribbean Dollar), and allows the free movement of member citizens. However, she explained that opportunities facilitated by the Revised Treaty of Basseterre require a paradigm shift.
She also said that it is vital for citizens, within the OECS to make full use of what is available not as a St. Lucian businessman, but an OECS businessman with the right to institute Pan OECS businesses across the member countries, and also to integrate production lines across the OECS so that different components can in fact be built across the OECS the way it is in different parts of the world.”
The OECS Director General added that this was a particularly special time for the OECS as Montserrat is scheduled to become the seventh signatory to the Revised Treaty of Basseterre on Wednesday (14th March).
At the 54th Meeting of the OECS Authority held late January, Heads of Governments considered and approved a proposal for a study to explore all possible modalities for receiving citizens’ grievances incurred in the implementation of the Revised Treaty of Basseterre. Dr. Ishmael updated what was being done.
“What we are in the process of doing right now is undertaking a study that will bring some information pertinent to making a decision to the Authority at the 55th Meeting in terms of what sort of institutional mechanism is required to make sure that citizens can be fully engaged in the evolution of their space as they see it,” she disclosed. “It may be a Regional Ombudsman Office, it may be engagement at the national level, it may be any one of the series of different options, and Heads are looking forward to receiving that report and debating it in June.”
Director General Ishmael urged media houses to become more involved in educational/promotional activities regarding the benefits of various initiatives of the OECS.