Press release 103/2004
(2 July 2004)

RADIO CARICOM TO PROMOTE REGIONAL CONNECTIVITY

Radio Caricom will be officially launched at the 25th Meeting of the Conference of the Heads of Government in Grenada on 4 July 2004

It will be established in all Member States over a short period of time with Barbados, Belize, Grenada, and St. Lucia, regarded as "pilot States" in the project, coming online in 2004. Radio Caricom will eventually become a common source of information on the Caribbean Community for all Member States, and available in all Member States.

Radio Caricom: the voice of the Caribbean Community, the official name of the service, is owned by the Community, and managed by the Secretariat of the Community. It is expected to bring the Caribbean to increasingly large percentages of the population in the Member States by internet protocol and FM radio, and to your desktop, regardless of where in the world you are located.

Radio Caricom is a radio service rather than a Radio Station in the traditional sense, due to its being based on internet protocols which allow mobile control by the system administrator regardless of his physical location.

Radio Caricom will not compete with, nor duplicate, other broadcast services in the Caricom region. Rather, as the niche for current and authoritative information on the Caribbean Community; its development, culture, achievements, challenges and lifestyles, it will complement the current content of broadcasting services and the traditional channels of public information on the Caribbean Community and its Secretariat.

An important and innovative aspect of the Region's Connectivity Agenda, Radio Caricom may well be enhanced in the near term, as part of a wider information and communication network which takes advantage of anticipated affordable access to Satellite networks as part of initiatives to transform the Community into a truly knowledge-based society encompassing e-commence and e-government.

Radio CARICOM will challenge resistance to positive change, facilitate debate and complement mainstream media broadcasting. With suitable programming, the people of the Region should be better informed on the full implementation of the CSME and the benefits anticipated.

The Deputy Secretary-General is in overall charge of the project, while coordination is sited within the Information and Communication Division of the Secretariat, with an Adviser responsible for oversight and development of the project.

Programmes will be available on demand on the Radio Caricom website  www.radiocaricom.org  and held for periods ranging from one to four weeks, depending on the topic and its relevance or interest to the community.

Using a test and fix approach, 2004 will be a period of testing and refinement of the system.

Radio Caricom frequencies are as follows:

Barbados:  100.7 FM 
Belize:  102.5 FM 
Grenada:  102.5 FM 
St. Lucia:  102.5 FM

Collaborating broadcast services, in each country are:

Barbados: CBC Radio
Belize: Love FM
Grenada: WEE FM
St. Lucia:  Radio St. Lucia

As a regional non-commercial, public service radio entity, Radio Caricom welcomes offers of materials exchange, partnership and collaboration from artistes, musicians, and radio broadcast services in the Caribbean and beyond.

For queries about, or offers to contribute to, Radio Caricom, please contact: 

Mr. Carlton James 
Communications Adviser 
CARICOM Secretariat 
Bank of Guyana Building, 
Georgetown, Guyana 
e-mail:  cjames@caricom.org
or carltonajames@yahoo.com 
Tel. (592) 223 7625 ext 2218

Or the Radio Caricom website, www.radiocaricom.org 

The Secretary-General is grateful to the Governments and private sector entities in the four "pilot" Member States; to the staff of The Secretariat and the officials of telecommunications entities and national frequency management authorities for their ready contributions and advice in the start-up of the service.