WHAT IS A CVQ?
The Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ) was officially launched in October 2007.The CVQ now facilitates the movement of artisans and other skilled persons in the CSME. This qualification will be accessible to persons already in the workforce as well as students in secondary schools across the Caribbean region.
HOW TO OBTAIN A CVQ IN YOUR COUNTRY?
A CARICOM national who wishes to seek work in another Member state as a wage earner must apply for and obtain a CARICOM Certificate of Recognition of Skills Qualification from the designated Minister in either his/her home country or from the host country.
The procedure to obtain a Skills Certificate is detailed in the domestic laws of Member States, which were enacted with the specific purpose of implementing the Free Movement of Skills. These laws are generally known as the Caribbean Community Skilled Nationals Acts.
In order to receive applications of CARICOM Nationals for free movement or to execute verifications, the Competent Authority must assign a Desk with the responsibility to administer the applications and supporting documents from interested CARICOM Nationals. The Desk will also be responsible for the submission every quarter of statistical information to the CSME Unit of the CARICOM Secretariat.
Applications should be sent/submitted to the Free Movement of Skills Department in the Ministry of Government with responsibility for issuing the Skills Certificate.
WHAT ARE THE RELEVANT DOCUMENTS?
In order to facilitate the application for Free Movement of Skills, the applicable categories of persons will have to produce the following information.
- A University Degree, which should be at minimum a Bachelor’s Degree
- Letter from the respective Ministry which states that the applicant is registered in the particular field.
- Copies of relevant qualifications in the field. Copies of a CVQ or an Associate Degree
- Letters from previous employers which clearly states the functions the applicant were performing
Other documents include:
- Birth Certificate
- Copy of the bio data page of his/her passport
- Marriage Certificate (where applicable)
- Passport sized photos
- Police Certificate of Character
The Free Movement of Skilled Persons, arises from an agreed CARICOM policy that was originally separate but related to the original Protocol II of the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas. The agreed policy, called The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Free Movement of Persons Act, is now enacted legislation in all the CSME Member States. It provides for the free movement of certain categories of skilled labour. Under this legislation, persons within these categories can qualify for Skills Certificates (which allow for the free movement across the region).
ESTABLISHING A BUSINESS WITHIN CARICOM
Under the CSME Right of Establishment Regime, you can now register and set up a business in any CSME Country as a CARICOM National with proof of start-up funds.
Check out the CSME Online Website at: http://csmeonline.org/news/regimes/right-of-establishment for more information.
RIGHTS OF ESTABLISHMENT
CARICOM Nationals have the right to work as self-employed persons in the CSME and thus can move to another Member State to establish a business. This is generally referred to as the Right of Establishment, which includes the following rights:
- To engage in any non-wage-earning activities of a commercial, industrial, professional or artisanal nature; and
- To create and manage economic enterprises, which includes any type of organization for the production of, or trade in goods, or the provision of services owned or controlled by a national of a Member State.
- Companies have the right to bring in managerial, supervisory and technical staff in order to further their business.
ENTRY TO A HOST COUNTRY
CARICOM Nationals who wish to move from one CARICOM Member State to another in order to establish a business will have to provide the following:
- Valid Passport
- Return Ticket
- Proof of financial resources for personal maintenance, such as credit cards, travelers cheques, cash or a combination thereof.
Each Member State must designate a Competent Authority for the Right of Establishment. After entry has been granted the CARICOM National must submit to the Competent Authority, relevant proof of legitimacy, such as:
- Police Certificate of Character
- Financial Resources
- Incorporation Documents/Business Name(s) Certificate
REFUSAL OF ENTRY
A Member State can refuse a qualified CARICOM National entry into its territory if there are sufficient grounds to believe that the CARICOM National will pose a threat to public order, health or security.