Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS)

Established: By treaty signed at Basseterre, St. Kitts, on June 18, 1981, effective July 4, 1981.

Purpose: To increase cooperation among members in foreign relations; to harmonize economic, trade, and financial policies; and to coordinate defense and security arrangements, ultimately leading to a deepening of subregional integration.

Headquarters: Castries, St. Lucia.

Principal Organs: Authority of Heads of Government of the Member States, Secretariat.

Director General: Len Ishmael (St. Lucia).

Membership (7): Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St. Kitts-Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Associate Members (2): Anguilla, British Virgin Islands.

Official Language: English.

Origin and development. The seven full participants in the OECS were formerly members of the West Indies Associated States, a preindependence grouping established in 1966 to serve various common economic, judicial, and diplomatic needs of British Caribbean ...

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