Monday, July 19, 2004

Atg: On CSME and sovereignty

Interesting piece. Here's an excerpt.

Caribbean people everywhere lament the fact that the Single Market and all its components and obligations are poised to shred the tapestry of national sovereignty. Most Caribbean States today, however, are signatories to many international arrangements.

We are members of the World Trade Organization (WTO), the African Caribbean and Pacific - European Union Relationship (ACP-EU) and we are seeking to become members of the Free Trade Area of the Americas. We act in compliance with OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) ultimatums, provisions of the MAI (Multilateral Agreement on Investment) agreements and other rules of international institutions.

In an environment, which is skewed to hegemonic rule the membership of most international organisations and arrangements amount to a definite erosion of the sovereignty of small states, since the forces which dominate and pervade this world's system of international trade, relations, and politics, are purely self-interest minded and such interest will forever contradict with the interest of smaller, developing states, which will have to struggle to stay alive within the system, and maintain what amount of sovereignty that they can.

Therefore, given the challenges and obstacles, which plague the theoretical notions of sovereignty, it should be accepted that there is a need for a re-evaluation of the concept of sovereignty.

The whole concept of national sovereignty needs to be redefined as increasingly its constraints and relativity are being realised.

These are evident and can be clearly seen through the strengthening of the WTO and the establishment of the FTAA.

If this can be recognised at these levels, what about regionally. It is important that we change the way in which we view this concept of sovereignty, in order for the region to negotiate from a position of greater strength within the WTO, FTAA, and in other similar negotiations.

It is at this point that the CSME becomes most relevant and shows itself to be a right path, and a viable option in the region's journey towards achieving sustainable development.

The CSME provides for the region, an avenue whereby the sovereignty of states can be conceptualised in alternative ways.

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