As it pertains to immigration and employment matters, Grenada is a signatory to two regional treaties being the Revised Treaty of Basseterre. The country is also signatory to several international treaties including several fundamental International Labour Organization (ILO) Treaties, Tax Information Exchange Agreements (TIEA) and Double Taxation Conventions (DTCs) as of August 2014. Grenada is not a signatory to any of the UN treaties on Refugees and stateless persons.
Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas
On 5 July 2001, Grenada signed the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas which amended the original treaty which established the Caribbean Community including the Single Market and Economy (CSME). This treaty provides for the free movement of persons, goods, services and capital, within the Caribbean Community.
The Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM) is an amalgamation of 15 Caribbean Nations and dependencies, targeting economic growth, integration and cooperation among its member states.
Citizens of CARICOM signatory states are considered ‘CARICOM Nationals’ and are nationals of the following countries:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- The Bahamas
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- Suriname; and
- Trinidad and Tobago
Further, Article 32.5(A) of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas establishes that ‘a person is also regarded as a national of a member state not only by being a citizen of that state but if he/she has a connection with the state of a kind which entitles him/her to be regarded as belonging to or being a native or resident of the State for the purpose of the laws thereof relating to immigration.’
In 1989, the Grand Anse Declaration and Work Programme for the Advancement of the Integration Movement held, at Grand Anse, Grenada, under the tutelage of Heads of Government of CARICOM member states came in founding of the CSME (Caribbean Single Market and Economy, also called CARICOM Single Market and Economy) which was given effect through the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas of 2001.
The key elements of the CSVE are:
- Free Movement of goods and Services
- Right of Establishment
- Common External Tariff
- Free Circulation
- Free Movement of Capital
- A Common Trade Policy; and
- Free Movement of Skills and Labour.
The defined areas under the CSME for the free movement of skills are:
- University Graduates
- Holders of Associate degrees or equivalent qualifications
- Household domestics with a CVQ or equivalent qualification
- Artisans with CVQ qualifications
- Media Workers
- Nurses; and
The Free Movement of Skills and Labour entails the right to seek employment in a Member State and the elimination of the need for work permits and permits of authorization.
However, whilst the right to unfettered movement exists, an important aspect to moving to another CARICOM Member State for work purposes is the need for a Certificate of Recognition of CARICOM Skills Qualification which can be obtained by a CARICOM National (eligible under one of the defined skill areas) applying to the designated Ministry responsible for CARICOM affairs in his/her home country.
Whilst CARICOM, under the CSME allows for the free movement of Skills and Labour for the purpose of gainful economic activity as a wage earner or non-wage earner across CARICOM Member States, no such right to free movement exists regarding free movement across member states solely for the purposes of residency, citizenship or naturalization.
A CARICOM national who wishes to migrate from one Member State to another, must still apply for residency or citizenship, subject to the residency and/or citizenship requirements of the intended country.
Revised Treaty of Basseterre
On 20th January 2011, Grenada signed unto the Revised Treaty of Basseterre which established to original treaty establishing the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Economic Union. This treaty provides for the free movement of persons, goods, services and capital within Eastern Caribbean States Economic Union.
Grenada ratified the following fundamental International Labour Organization (ILO) Treaties: –
- Right to Organise and Collective Bargaining Convention, 1949 (No. 98) (09 Jul 1979).
- Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29) (09 Jul 1979)
- Migration for Employment Convention (Revised), 1949 (No. 97 (09 Jul 1979) Abolition of Forced Labour Convention, 1975.
- Abolition of Forced Labour Convention, 1957 (No. 105) (09 Jul 1979)
- Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise Convention, 1948 (No. 87) (25 October 1994)
- Equal Remuneration Convention, 1951 (No. 100) (25 Oct 1994)
- Discrimination (Employment and Occupation) Convention, 1958 (No. 111) (14 May 2003).
- Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138) (14 May 2003)
- Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) (14 May 2003)
Grenada has also ratified treaties concerning transparency and exchange of information for tax purposes. The island’s network of Exchange of Information arrangements comprises 19 bilateral agreements.17 are covered by Tax Information Exchange Agreements (TIEAs) (Aruba, Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Germany, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States and 2 by Double Tax Convention (DTCs) (South Africa and Switzerland).