The Caribbean Community (Caricom) said yesterday that it would continue to back Antigua and Barbuda in its ongoing battle with the United States over Internet gambling at the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Yesterday, Caricom Secretary General Irwin LaRocque, in accepting the credentials of Clarence Henry as Antigua and Barbuda’s plenipotentiary representative to Caricom, said the region “reiterates its full support for Antigua and Barbuda in its fight to obtain the compliance of the United States of America with the ruling of the World Trade Organization Dispute Settlement Body on the subject of cross-border provision of gambling and betting services.
Earlier this month, the Antigua and Barbuda Government said there had been no “substantial progress” with Washington over the long-standing Internet gaming dispute despite recent rulings in its favor by the WTO.
In 2007, the WTO awarded the Caribbean country the right to target U.S. services, copyrights and trademarks in retaliation for its online betting ban. But the WTO capped the limit of annual trade sanctions at $21 million.
The country’s administration had sought the right to impose $3.4 billion in retaliatory measures, while Washington offered a mere $500,000.
LaRocque said yesterday that Henry was no stranger to Caricom, having represented his country at numerous meetings of the councils of the regional integration movement.