News Releases

The Future of Caribbean-European Union Relations

For Release Upon Receipt - October 8, 2009

St. Augustine

A new partnership at The University of the West Indies (UWI) is exploring the possibilities for productive engagement between the Caribbean and the European Union.

The UWI Institute of International Relations (IIR) and the European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM) are cooperating to analyse the evolving relationship between Europe and the Caribbean and to assess related issues. Both institutions have recognised the need to identify specific areas of research and to establish appropriate mechanisms for the conduct of this activity over the next five years. 

On October 8th and 9th from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., the IIR, in collaboration with the ECDPM, will host a seminar titled “The Future of Caribbean-European Union Relations”. This seminar, which is open by invitation only, will bring together a mix of academics, activists and think-tanks.

The seminar will be opened by Professor Timothy Shaw, IIR Director and Mr Geert Laporte, Head of Institutional Relations and Partnership, ECDPM. At 12 noon on the opening day, Prof. Shaw and Mr Laporte will sign an MOU between IIR and ECDPM in the presence of Professor E. Nigel Harris, UWI Vice Chancellor and Professor Clement Sankat, UWI Pro Vice Chancellor and St Augustine Campus Principal.

Seminar presentations will be delivered by Ambassador Colin Granderson, Caricom Assistant Secretary General; P.I. Gomes, Guyanese Ambassador to Belgium; Professor Norman Girvan, IIR Senior Lecturer; Professor Dennis Pantin, Coordinator of the UWI Sustainable Economic Development Unit; and Dr Keith Nurse, Director of the Shridath Ramphal Centre for International Trade Law, Policy and Services, UWI Cave Hill, among others.

Among those expected to attend are Ambassador Luis Fernando Andrade Falla, Secretary General of the Association of Caribbean States; Dr Anna-Teresa Romero, Director of the International Labour Organisation; Mr Stylianos Christopoulos, Chargé d’Affaires of the European Commission Delegation to Trinidad and Tobago; and Mr David Abdulah, President of the Federation of Independent Trade Unions and non-Governmental Organisations.

The purpose of the seminar is to define an agenda for research into issues related to Caribbean-European Union relations. Among topics for discussion are the implications of the proposed Economic Partnership Agreements with Caribbean Forum (Cariforum), and the rationalisation of CARIFORUM relations with the countries of the former socialist bloc in Europe.

For more information, please contact The UWI Institute of International Relations at (868) 662 2002 Ext. 2010 (Prof. Timothy Shaw), 3240 (Dr. Mark Kirton) or 3246 (Ms. Lynelle Clarke) or, or; or visit the European Centre for Development Policy Management website at

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About UWI Institute of International Relations

The Institute of International Relations (IIR) at The University of The West Indies (UWI) is situated on the St. Augustine Campus in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. The UWI IIR houses the most comprehensive collection of information resources in the world on the international relations of the Caribbean. The postgraduate Institute publishes the Journal of Caribbean International Relations, offers excellent research, teaching and consultative assistance to all stakeholders, and organises, sponsors or co-sponsors workshops, conferences and seminars relevant to the international relations challenges of the region. The mission of the Institute is to enhance understanding of Caribbean international relations, applying multidisciplinary perspectives, while contributing to related regional and national human resource development needs. Established in October 1966, IIR offers Diploma & MPhil/PhD in International Relations and MSc in Global Studies. It is proud of its more than 1,100 alums and recently hosted ACUNS’ 22nd AGM (see In 2008/9 it offered its MSc at ADEK in Suriname. IIR postgraduates undertake annual study tours to Georgetown (CARICOM), Suriname (SADEK), Cuba and/or Panama. The Institute has close working links with the ACS, ECLAC, ILO, UNDP, UNIC & UNATT among others in Port of Spain and in 2009 has been involved in events around the Fifth Summit of Americas and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).


About UWI

Over the last six decades, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged University with over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest and most longstanding higher education provider in the English-speaking Caribbean, with main campuses in Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, and Centres in Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, The Bahamas, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St Christopher (St Kitts) & Nevis, St Lucia, and St Vincent & the Grenadines. UWI recently launched its Open Campus, a virtual campus with over 50 physical site locations across the region, serving over 20 countries in the English-speaking Caribbean. UWI is an international university with faculty and students from over 40 countries and collaborative links with over 60 universities around the world. Through its seven Faculties, UWI offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Pure & Applied Sciences, Science and Agriculture, and Social Sciences.


  • Professor Timothy Shaw, UWI Institute of International Relations

  • Faculty/Department

  • Tel.: (868) 662 2002 Ext. 2010
  • Email: