Regional Trade Officials Sign Off on Gender Mainstreaming Position Paper at CDB Workshop
The four-day seminar on Gender Mainstreaming in Caribbean Trade Policies, hosted by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the International Trade Centre (ITC), ended on Thursday, June 19, 2014 with participants signing off on a Position Paper that signaled their commitment to including gender sensitive approaches to their work. The Position Paper, drafted and submitted by the ITC, made four key recommendations including the application of gender analysis in trade policy design at the national level; advocacy among the wider stakeholder groups; capacity-building within agencies and organisations in the respective territories and the infusion of gender sensitive analysis in the national budgeting process. The proposals were reviewed, amended and agreed to by the 30 participants including senior trade policymakers from across the region. The delegates also commended the seminar organisers for their efforts and committed to taking back the learnings for use in their development of trade policies and programmes. The feedback from delegates was applauded by CDB's Director of Economics, Dr. Justin Ram, who reaffirmed CDB's own commitment to integrating gender analysis into policies and programmes and told participants when country and agency loans are put to the Board, they are based on strong gender analysis and designed with measures to address gender disparities that may affect the achievement of the outcomes of the interventions. As the seminar came to a close, the ITC's Senior Officer Millenium Development Goals, advised the trade policymakers that if the region wants to use trade for development, it must include more stakeholders in the process to effectively inform the policies. CDB's and ITC's comments were further supported by the seminar's special guest and Justice advocate, Senator Marlene Malahoo Forte who told the delegates, "The people of the region are depending on you. Gender mainstreaming will not just benefit girls, our boys will benefit as well." The seminar ran from June 16th to 19th at CDB's Headquarters in Barbados.