WHAT WILL PRIME MINISTER BARROW OF BELIZE DO?
by Ray Auxillou, September 2nd., 2008Today is the day, that PM BARROW is supposed to either sign, or not sign the EPA, which is the CONTRACT offered by the European Union, written by the European Union and offered to the CARICOM countries. Some will sign and some will not. CARICOM is a medly of independent sovereign states, that join forces sometimes, voting on international affairs and have somewhat similar training for lawyers and judicial systems, Caricom also has a mutual tariff arrangement, which is supposed to give duty free access for things made, or repackaged within CARICOM from imported raw materials. Once we shared common educational goals based under UK rules, but in the recent eleven years have diverged from much of the other CARICOM countries, to one of self sustainable sovereignty, which now includes two Universities in Belize and a college system geared to local industrial development.
The European Union wishes to blast open our markets in CARICOM, but cannot get a unity of Sovereign States to agree to sign any kind of common CONTRACT with them. We have no central government in CARICOM with any such authority. Those smaller CARICOM island countries accustomed to exporting their citizens to the industrialized worlds and have no ambitions to go to an independent self sufficiency wish to sign the EPA. The EPA offered is what the Europeans call the ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT. Which means for accepting and aiding us to market our sugar and bananas in Belize, they get to sell us DUTY FREE all the hundreds of thousands of products they add value with, from imported raw materials from around the world. Belize of course, up to now, had the ambition to start exporting value added products ourselves and did not want to remain a raw commodity bulk exporter. What is happening with this EPA from the European Union being shoved down CARICOM member throats, in order to open our markets to their myriad products at preferential tariffs over the rest of the world, has to be signed individually by each member state of CARICOM. For CARICOM has no central government, there is no supranational organ to implement such decisions and make them binding on each sovereign state within CARICOM. Our Prime Minister BARROW has not discussed this signing with anyone, the media can find out about? It will be his unilateral decision. Not for the UDP party, not for the CABINET and not apparently with any advice from his bureaucrats? What will BARROW do? This is our ONE MAN government at work. The Economic Partnership Agreement ( slavery by another name, using euphemisms ) is going to be his decision ALONE, as far as anybody can see in Belize ? The slavery contract is for a minimum of ten years and perhaps longer. The whip of the EU to be used on us in Belize are threats of trouble with our sugar and banana exports to the EU.
This signing, or not signing, to occur today in the Eastern Caribbean by our Prime Minister, is but ONE battle in the war for independence of Belize , if our Prime Minister refuses to sign. If he has decided to sign the EPA contract, then the war is over and this battle is lost and we are effectively subjects now as colonials once again of a new master, the European Union, who have taken over the UK role in Belize. ‘ Within twelve hours we shall know the fate of Belize for the foreseeable future?
This effects mostly the future of the HEARTLAND of BELIZE and that of the Cayo District, the Western Belize Industrial Area that is developing export capacity, as population expands. The economic effects for the future are wide and far reaching.