Regional integration stakeholders convened recently to discuss the current implementation status of the indefinite stay regime and the rights contingent to the Free Movement of People Regime—two critical accomplishments of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) towards the full implementation of the Revised Treaty of Basseterre and the establishment of the OECS Economic Union.
In attendance at the 18th meeting of the Free Movement of People working group were senior immigration officials from OECS member states, representatives from the OECS Commission, and four OECS Commissioners.
The Commission provided an update on progress towards the implementation of the Free Movement of People Regime and member states were given the opportunity to directly address matters relevant to these discussions.
The meeting also received an update on the OECS Commission’s participation at the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Regional Seminar and Workshop, which took place between Jan. 31 and Feb. 3 in St. John’s, Antigua and Barbuda.
The working group addressed two major topics discussed at the ICAO regional meetings: the need for the harmonization of border management systems; and the need to enhance the security of national identification cards.
OECS member states took this opportunity to provide an update on ongoing national efforts toward the harmonization of border security systems and recommendations for advancing this matter were considered by the group.
The OECS was represented at ICAO meetings by senior border control managers, including Chief Immigration Officers from Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. The Commission was represented by Tourism Specialist Dr. Lorraine Nicholas, and Regional Integration Specialist Clarence Henry.