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Resources

Caribbean Law

The Caribbean Court of Justice and Legal Integration within CARICOM: Some Lessons from the European Community

O’Brien, D and Morano-Foadi, S (2009) The Caribbean Court of Justice and Legal Integration within CARICOM: Some Lessons from the European Community. Law and Practice of International Courts and Tribunals, 8 (3). pp. 399–429.

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CARICOM, established under the Treaty of Chaguaramas, in 1973, has since its inception suffered from the repeated failure of member states to implement at the national level decisions taken by the Heads of Government at the regional level. The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ,) which has been vested with a compulsory and exclusive jurisdiction to interpret and apply the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas, is intended to bridge this implementation gap. This has aroused expectations that the CCJ will play a role similar to that played by the ECJ in promoting legal integration. However, it is important to recognise that the ECJ has functioned within a particular jurisdictional framework and has benefited from the contribution of a diverse range of actors within the wider European legal community. It cannot, therefore, be assumed that the CCJ will be able to replicate the role played by the ECJ. The aim of this article is, accordingly, to review the jurisdictional framework within which the CCJ will function; to explore how this is likely to affect its relationship with the wider legal community within CARICOM; and, finally, to consider how this will impact upon legal integration within the region generally.

CARICOM: regional integration in a post-colonial world.

O’Brien, D (2011) CARICOM: regional integration in a post-colonial world. European Law Journal, 17 (5). pp. 630–648.

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This article argues that the distinctive form of economic integration within the Commonwealth Caribbean can best be understood if account is taken of the imprint of colonial rule both upon relations between these former colonies and upon the political consciousness of the region’s leaders. The legacy of colonial rule, including the abortive attempt at a West Indies Federation, resulted not only in a profound mistrust of any form of political union but also established the ideal of island self-government as the centre of the region’s political culture. This is clearly manifest in the institutional structure and governance of the Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM), which is based on the principles of intergovernmentalism. Notwithstanding some recent changes to that institutional structure, such as the introduction of the Caribbean Court of Justice, Member States remain firmly committed to the pursuit of regional integration through cooperation and association without any transfer of their sovereign decision-making powers. It will be argued, however, that this will not only make it increasingly difficult to achieve the economic objectives of CARICOM, but will also make it increasingly difficult to maintain the fragile sense of regional unity, originally forged in the crucible of colonial rule, in a post-colonial world as new alliances both within and without the region begin to emerge.

The versatility of state indemnity

Cooper, S (2009) The versatility of state indemnity. In: Modern Studies in Property Law, Hart Publishing. pp. 35–60

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This book is a collection of papers given at the seventh biennial conference held at the University of Cambridge in March 2008, and is the fifth in the series Modern Studies in Property Law. The Property Law conference has become well-known as a unique opportunity for property lawyers to meet and confer both formally and informally. This volume is a refereed and revised selection of the papers given there. It covers a broad range of topics of immediate importance, not only in domestic law but also on a worldwide scale.

Partition of Land in the Commonwealth Caribbean

Cooper, S (2010) Partition of Land in the Commonwealth Caribbean. Common Law World Review, 39 (3). pp. 283–309.

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In contrast to England, applications for partition of land are still alive and well in the Caribbean, but for various reasons it can be difficult to obtain legal sources to provide guidance on the proper exercise of the power to partition. This paper assists by identifying principles according to which the jurisdiction could be exercised and assessing their suitability to the Caribbean.