CARICOM Single Market and Economy

The CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) is the Region's response to the evolving
international environment in areas such as trade liberalisation, globalisation, etc.
The CSME is essentially conceived as the creation of a single economic space where goods and
services along with the factors of production (labour and capital and in the case of land the right
of access for establishment purposes) will be able to move freely supported by appropriate
institutions and other related measures such as macro economic coordination, policy
harmonisation etc so as to approximate the single economic space.

There are a number of arrangements required to facilitate the creation of the CSME. The strategy
has been to approach implementation in an incremental manner and on parallel tracks. Hence, in
the first instance, the basis, i.e. the Treaty of Chaguaramus, upon which the integration
movement was built had to be changed to accommodate the new approaches. This has been done
through a number of Protocols- nine in all, treating with issues ranging from institutions and
structures, sectoral policies, rules of competition, consumer protection and dispute settlement.
(See - for the texts of the protocols)

Parallel to this is the ongoing work to remove the remaining barriers to internal trade in goods -
current data indicates that in excess of 95% of regional trade in goods is free of duties. The
implementation of arrangements to facilitate trade in services, movement of capital and the right
of establishment is currently ongoing. Phased implementation of the free movement of persons
has begun with the CARICOM Skilled Nationals bill and the agreement to facilitate free
movement in the categories of sports persons, culture workers, artistes and media workers. On
the marco-economic side work is ongoing both on the capital market and monetary union
initiatives as well as in the fiscal area - harmonisation of the fiscal incentives regimes, corporate
taxation etc.

See the "Single Market Update" for the status of implementation of various elements of the
CSME. A list of Frequently Asked Questions and their answers is also available.
( and

The Single Market and Economy is fundamentally different from the Common Market which it
supersedes. These differences could be viewed in terms of definition, focus and features. Further
details could be provided on request.

Issues for Focus


  • Relevance of the CSME in the International Context - Youth Perspectives
  • Impact of the CSME on economic empowerment of Youth
  • Opportunities for the advancement of Youth Development resulting from the creation of
  • the CSME
  • Youth Enterprise in the context of the CSME
  • Youth ownership of the process of implementation
  • Role of Youth in Public Education and Acceptance of the CSME

Further Information: Contact the Single Market and Economy sub programme; email Ivor
Carryl or John Kissoon


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