By Benjamin Flowers Staff Reporter
Belize and Guatemala have recently formed an initiative to promote amicable relations between the two countries.
Representatives from both countries signed on to the Belize-Guatemala Administrative Commission at an inaugural ceremony held at the George Price Center meeting last Friday.
The commission will serve as a trade-related committee that functions within the framework established in the 2006 Partial Scope.
Michael Singh, Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Trade, Investment Promotion, Private Sector Development and Consumer Protection, headed the Belizean delegation, while the Guatemalan Delegation was headed by Vice Minister Maria Luisa Flores Villagran.
The meeting addressed the approval and adoption of the administrative rules and procedures for effective operation of the commission and, in accordance with the agreement, activated four technical committees.
These include the Committee on Rules of Origin, Committee on Sanitary and Phyto-Sanitary Measures, Committee on Technical Barriers to Trade, and the Committee on Land Transportation. Both Parties also exchanged information on Points of Contact and Heads of the Technical committees.
The group also tabled a proposal for the establishment of a new technical body to assist the Commission in the implementation of the Agreement. The Terms of Reference of this Technical body will be developed for future discussion by The Commission.
Singh reaffirmed GoB’s strong interest and commitment to maintaining formal trade relations with Guatemala.
He also spoke on the importance of Belize being a conduit for trade between Guatemala and CARICOM.