The CARICOM Passport is an official travel document that can be used for travel within and outside the Caribbean. It is issued by the 15 member states of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) for their citizens.
One of the major benefits of the Caricom passport in order to make intra-regional and international travel easier for their citizens within one single bloc of community.
Caricom Member States
There are 15 member states in the Caricom.
- Antigua and Barbuda
- St. Kitts and Nevis
- St. Lucia
- St. Vincent and the Grenadines
- Trinidad and Tobago
Note: These CARICOM members do not issue common passport are the Bahamas, Haiti, and Montserrat.
The CARICOM organisation was established in 1973 by english speaking parts of the Caribbean. CARICOM’s one single market main purposes are to promote economic integration and cooperation among its members. The Caricom is similar to the schengen area in the European cooperation.
- Free movement of Goods
- Free trade in Services
- Free movement of Skills
- Free movement of Capital
- RIGHT to Establishment
One of the major benefits of the passport is to facilitate smoother processing of CARICOM nationals transiting the region. It is intended to foster a greater sense of community within the region and would be a tangible demonstration of one’s membership in the Caribbean family.
You will see two letters ‘CC’ and below two words ‘Caribbean community’ written in all passports issued by member states.
Five Caricom countries run Citizenship by investment programs offer Caricom passports for investments along with conferring the status as ‘Caricom citizens’
- Antigua and Barbuda began using the new CARICOM passport format by the middle of 2005.
- St. Kitts and Nevis began issuance of the document to its citizens on 14 November 2005
- Commonwealth of Dominica on 14 December, 2005 became the fourth Member State of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to launch its CARICOM passport.
- St. Lucia proposed introducing the common passport in early 2007 and actually introduced it on 16 January 2007.
- Grenada planned to begin issuing the common passport in mid-2006, but started issuing them on 29 January 2007.
The main changes brought about by the CSME are:
- abolition of the Work Permit
- introduction of the CARICOM Skills Certificate (CARICOM Certificate of Recognition of Skills Qualification)
- definite entry for six (6) months
- indefinite stay in a Member State
- the right to transfer one’s social security benefits from one CARICOM state to another
Hassle free travel is a necessary condition for persons to fully enjoy the rights connected to movement for the purposes of engagement in gainful economic activity. It is accommodated by:
- Common ED Card
- CARICOM line at immigration points
- Abolition of the need for a Visa
- CARICOM passport
Caricom Passport Power
CARICOM Passport rankings by the number of countries and territories their holders could visit without a visa or by obtaining visa on arrival in 2021 were as follows
|Country||Number of destinations|
|Saint Kitts and Nevis||156|
|Antigua and Barbuda||151|
|Trinidad and Tobago||150|
|Saint Vincent and the Grenadines||148|
A CARICOM National is, according to Article 32.5 (A) of the Revised Treaty, a person who is regarded as a National of a Member State. This is the case if such person:
- is a citizen of that State
- has a connection with that State of a kind which entitles him/her to be regarded as belonging to, or, if it be so expressed, as being a
- native or resident of the State for the purpose of the laws thereof relating to immigration
- University Graduates
- Media Workers
All CARICOM Nationals are entitled to entry into another CARICOM Member State, with an automatic six month stay.
CARICOM Nationals who are granted a six months definite stay cannot automatically –
- stay indefinitely
- take up residence
- work without permission
- provide services
- establish a business
A CARICOM National who wishes to stay beyond six months or conduct the above activities in another CARICOM country can only do so pursuant to the relevant Community regime, or national laws.
A CARICOM National who wishes to change his/her status as a visitor during his stay, must apply to the appropriate authorities and provide the required documentation, as a CARICOM Skilled National or a service provider, or apply for a work permit or permission to reside.