Will Commonwealth Citizenship Programmes last forever? 1

Will Commonwealth Citizenship Programmes last forever?

What are the next steps?

The ever-surprising effects of globalization have given rise to this new dynamic whereby passports carry a price tag. C.I.P’s facilitate travel for many citizens in emerging and developing economies facing the reality of growing travel restrictions. On the other hand, it is an unconventional way for some countries, particularly small states, to increase revenue, attract foreign investment, and bolster growth.

Many reporters and analysts such as the I.M.F[1] question how long these programmes will last. The prime minister of St Kitts has, in open forums, spoke about “…thinking about the next steps, the end game,” which illustrates the consideration that these programmes will not last forever. This is evidenced broadly in the mandates of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) which were founded upon principles of opening up boarders and the guarantee of most-favoured nation principle and non-discrimination.[2]

This move towards globalisation has had a disadvantageous effect on small states as illustrated by Sir Ronald Saunders in the Caribbean Times Magazine in February 2017. He mentioned that few small states have benefited from globalisation over the last 17 years with the notable exception being Singapore. Similarly regarding C.I.P’s, these developed nations could implement global policies which act to undermine the long term sustainability of regional O.E.C.S programmes. History illustrates, that in moving forward with these programmes there must a strategic plan at a regional level as developed nations could potentially cut the O.E.C.S out of the benefits gained. Therefore, it may be imperative for O.E.C.S nations to have a expected/targeted economic inflow in the short to medium term as a precaution as the long term benefits are not yet guaranteed.


[1]

ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA STAFF REPORT FOR THE 2014 ARTICLE IV CONSULTATION AND SECOND POST-PROGRAM MONITORING—PRESS RELEASE; AND STAFF REPORT”  https://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/scr/2015/cr15189.pdf accessed on 17th September 2017

[2]“Principles of the trading system.” https://www.wto.org/english/thewto_e/whatis_e/tif_e/fact2_e.htm accessed 17th August 2017

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