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Rethinking the CARICOM Dispute Settlement Mechanism

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This article examines the progress of the CARICOM dispute settlement mechanism from its originally diplomatic procedures to its enhanced legalistic system. A standing judicial institution in CARICOM is a coming of age for this region, and its jurisprudence is now referred to as CARICOM law. These significant legal advances raise many normative questions about the adequacy of the dispute settlement institutions and whether the rules and processes are clearly defined to enable nascent CARICOM law to be the primary tool by which there can be effective regulation of CARICOM integration. In order to answer these questions, this article reviews some of the theories on dispute settlement and also draws on the experiences of similar regional bodies, and concludes that a combination of ideas and mechanisms of dispute resolution is more suited to the Caribbean situation than a uni-lineal or a transplanted regime.

Affiliations: 1: LL.M., University of the West Indies; Ph.D., Aberdeen; Aberdeen University,


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