In the Caribbean, there is a strong interest in understanding the new European data protection legal framework and to learn from the experiences made during the process of adoption of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May 2018 and its first year of implementation. Public administrations in the regions are also interested to learn more about how international regulatory cooperation with the European Union involving data flows may be further facilitated.
In view of this, a two-day regional workshop on the EU GDPR and its relevance for public administrations and regional social partners is taking place in Bridgetown, Barbados, on 29-30 January 2020. It was organised by the EU Delegation in Barbados and funded by the Technical Assistance and Information Exchange Instrument (TAIEX) of the European Commission in cooperation with the Caribbean Export Development Agency, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ), the CARIFORUM Secretariat, the Barbados Coalition Services Industries, the Ministry of Foreign Trade for the Government of Barbados.
The workshop supports the EU's political goals through raising awareness on the EU data protection standards and through this promoting EU values abroad. It was funded under the Partnership Instrument (PI), run by Foreign Policy Instruments Service (FPI), which is designed to advance EU and mutual interests among partner countries.
A follow-up TAIEX-PI expert mission in the Dominican Republic is also in preparation with the aim to support the country in the elaboration of the new national legislation on the protection of privacy and personal data.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into application on May 25, 2018 and was designed to modernise existing rules on the protection of personal data of individuals and make them fit for the digital age. Further, by providing a harmonised and simplified framework, applicable across the whole European Union, it streamlined the regulatory environment, thereby particularly benefitting foreign companies doing business in Europe. While the GDPR has become a reference for many national laws outside of the EU, the demand for protection of personal data is becoming global.
In this context, convergence towards common data protection standards can greatly facilitate data flows, both for commercial reasons and in the area of regulatory (including law enforcement) cooperation. This trend is already visible, including in Latin America and the Caribbean. In order to harness the opportunities offered by the global digital economy and the corresponding need for public authorities to cooperate cross-border, modern data protection systems are converging on key elements: comprehensive, cross-sectoral legislation, a core set of principles and enforceable rights, and independent supervision by specialised data protection authorities.
About TAIEX-Partnership Instrument:
TAIEX is the European Commission's Technical Assistance and Information Exchange Instrument, implemented by the Institution Building Unit, NEAR.C3. TAIEX provides short-term, peer-to-peer assistance to government administrations to support them in the approximation, application and enforcement of the EU acquis, to share EU best practices, and to help implement bilateral/regional agreements. Given its successful implementation in the Neighbourhood and Enlargement area, DG NEAR and FPI have decided to extend TAIEX to other countries, with funding from the Partnership Instrument.
- Publication date
- 30 January 2020
- Service for Foreign Policy Instruments