June 2014

Guinea Grass, Orange Walk District, “Growing with Business”- Y.D.R. Sewing Shop










Image“Good service & quality up to the last sew,’’ as the value proposition suggests, Y.D.R. Sewing Shop offers a variety of customized sewn items for both adults and children at affordable prices and at a timely delivery.

Starting a business was something Ms. Rossana Velasquez only dreamed of; but when her tailoring business idea took off, this Guinea Grass resident became a budding entrepreneur and found herself running a very lucrative business, where she sews everything from school uniforms and casual wear to home utensils such as washing machines cover, blender covers and toaster covers.

Ms. Velasquez’s inspiration for starting the business was also part of the reason for success: She found a need, and then found a way to fill it.

“It was one of those things that just happen when you’re not expecting it,” she explains. Continue reading “Guinea Grass, Orange Walk District, “Growing with Business”- Y.D.R. Sewing Shop”

Guinea Grass, Orange Walk District, “Growing with Business”- La Fortaleza Tortilleria y Panadería

Tortilleria y Panadería


There’s a moment of realization that comes over every small business owner when the thought of turning a hobby into a profession seems less like a crazy notion and more like a tangible idea.

For Ms. Floridalma Velasquez, that moment arrived when she realized that she could no longer depend on her job working for others to provide for her family.

So after years of crafting her skills, which eventually led her to become certified in cake decorating and desserts in 2009, it occurred to Ms. Velasquez that perhaps her longtime love of baking could be more than a personal hobby. And, after deciding to take a chance, she opened La Fortaleza Tortilleria y Panadería, which has slowly morphed from an idea into a renown Bakery and Tortilla producing business that has been providing a variety of home-made traditional breads, hand-made corn tortillas, flour tortillas, variety of pizzas, and has also been catering for special events (Sweet Sixteen Parties, Weddings, Birthdays), offering cakes and desserts, to the locals of Guinea Grass village, Orange Walk District.

Being the first of its kind to offer such products in the small village of about 5,000, it became evident that opening a bakery brought its own set of unique challenges, stresses, and rewards to the first-time entrepreneur; all of which Ms. Velasquez welcomed in strides. Notwithstanding, the company thrived and Ms. Velasquez made a commitment early on to add value to its business through its delivery services, utilizing the business’s close proximity to its customer by making it convenient for customers to have their products at their doorstep, while engaging her customers and encouraging new visitors to her store Continue reading “Guinea Grass, Orange Walk District, “Growing with Business”- La Fortaleza Tortilleria y Panadería”

Caribbean Export Creates Opportunities


Bridgetown, BARBADOS, June 25, 2014. The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) hosted a Business Forum on June 25th, 2014 for private sector firms as well as other key stakeholders from CARIFORUM, the French Caribbean Outermost regions (FCORs) and EU Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) in the Caribbean, with the aim of facilitating greater trade between the territories on the island of Grand Cayman.


Despite their being part of the wider Caribbean region and the existence of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), trade and economic cooperation between the French Caribbean Outermost regions (FCORs) and EU Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) in the Caribbean and CARIFORUM territories remains under-developed. The exception to this is Trinidad and Tobago who exports large quantities of energy and energy related products to FCORs and OCTs.


Studies commissioned by Caribbean Export, as well as by others, indicate that there are significant opportunities for trade between CARIFORUM and the FCORs and OCTs as the latter import an average of 90% of their goods and services. There are opportunities therefore for CARIFORUM countries to strengthen trade with these territories in particular for raw materials, primary agricultural products, agro-processing, tourism, as well as financial and professional services.

Continue reading “Caribbean Export Creates Opportunities”

Celebrate the growth of your business with learning tools!



Invest Belize

16 Social Media Marketing Tips From the Pros

#1: Host Social Media Events

Mari Smith

Mari Smith

You can build a loyal, raving community by hosting online events that put the focus on your fans.

A fun and effective online event is hosting a “Fan Page Friday”—it’s essentially a virtual networking party where you allow all your fans to share links to their own pages on your page.

The event can last as long as 24 hours or more and is a great way to discover new businesses, get more fans, and build tremendous community while increasing your EdgeRank (news feed visibility), too.

Many page owners launch a Fan Page Friday event every week; however, I find it much more effective to host one about every four to six weeks, as it has a bigger impact. On my last virtual party, several thousand page owners participated, many of whom picked up as much as a hundred or more new fans as a result.

Be sure to include a hashtag like #FacebookFriday and schedule your initial invitation to go out very early in the morning. Then add another couple of invitations throughout the day.

facebook friday

Facebook Friday is a great way to build your community.

  Continue reading “16 Social Media Marketing Tips From the Pros”

CARICOM Regional Standards for Public Comments: Labelling of Goods General Principles and Labelling of Prepackaged Goods

The Belize Bureau of Standards wishes to notify the relevant stakeholders and the general public that the final draft standard “Labelling of Goods General Principles” and “Labelling of Prepackaged Goods”, being developed by the CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality (CROSQ) is out for public comments. The deadline for submission of comments to the Belize Bureau of Standards is August 22, 2014. Comments can be emailed to

To view the Standards for Labelling of Goods General Principles, kindly click on the links below:
Labelling_of_Goods_-_General_Principles_-_DCRS_NODOM_55_June 2014

Comments are to be submitted via the form below:
Comment Form – Labelling of Goods General Principles

To view the Standards for Labelling of Prepackaged Goods, kindly click on the links below:

Labelling_of_Prepackaged_Goods_-_DCRS NODOM_66_200x_June 2014

Comments are to be submitted via the form below:
Comment Form – Labelling of Prepackaged Goods

For any additional information regarding the CARICOM Regional Standards, kindly contact the Belize Bureau of Standards at 501-822-0446 or

Demand Solutions


Do you have a startup that could change the world?

Apply to be selected among the most innovative startups in Latin America and the Caribbean!

This year the IDB will be selecting a group of 15 startups, to participate, from December 1st to the 3rd, 2014, in one of the most innovative events at the IDB in Washington, DC. The goal is to raise awareness and connect innovative solutions, creative ventures from Latin America and the Caribbean to the world.

Selected candidates will:

  • Be exposed to the best disruptive content on innovation, interactive events, hands on workshops, inspiring talks, and find new ideas, connect, share experiences and learn from peers;
  • Present their startups to the audience of DEMAND SOLUTIONS, including investors, executives, journalists, industry references, university students and prospective partners. They will also be evaluated by a panel of expert judges;
  • Work two days under the modality “Fly Garage” a Mondelez International innovation incubator, to be part of a social, collaborative and creative experiment for their startups;
  • Be awarded a round trip airline ticket from their home country to Washington, D.C., lodging, and a stipend for food and local transportation. It is expected that selected innovators commit to participate in all the activities of the program prior to and after the event.


Continue reading “Demand Solutions”

Kaj Expressions Raises Awareness and Hairs at Design Caribbean


For Immediate Release

Bridgetown, Barbados, June 12, 2014. Belizean jewellery designer Khadija Assales may have raised a few eyebrows with her collection crafted from the tails of the notoriously ravenous Pterois or Lionfish but she was also successful in raising awareness about the devastating effect that the carnivorous species have been having  on the aquatic ecosystems of Belize and the rest of the Caribbean region. Assales launched her line of Lionfish jewellery as part of the Design Caribbean pavilion during the Calabash Literary Festival in Treasure Beach , St. Elizabeth , Jamaica from May 30th to June 1st. The Design Caribbean project was the brainchild of  the Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) in sponsorship of the Calabash Festival.  It was conceptualized as a means of showcasing the rich and varied  talent which the region has to offer while opening up a new market for the creative entrepreneurs who may not otherwise been able to take advantage of the opportunity which Calabash provides.

Caribbean Export recognized  the Calabash Literary Festival as an ideal platform for artists who produce exceptional craft as the festival has been serving this purpose for writers, musicians and visual artists from across the island and the world for the past twelve years.  As a result, the festival has  become the most elite literary festival and cultural event in the English-speaking Caribbean and it continues to grow in appeal and reach by leaps and bounds each year of its staging. The artisanal plaza, which has become a fixture in the festival’s offerings, presented the ideal setting for a conglomeration of artists from across the region to take Brand Caribbean to the world.

Assales eagerly submitted her application for participation in this venture not only to promote her brand, Kaj Expressions but specifically to drive her awareness campaign forward through her innovative pieces. The entrepreneur not only manipulates the projectile matrials and their flattering accents by hand, she has also learned to scubadive and to spearfish specifically to catch the creatures. Her proactive and passionate approach to environmental protection was contagious and she swayed many visitors to her stand to try on the dramatic pieces.

The striking and intimidating appearace of the zebra-striped lionfish does not belie its nature. The species has staged an veritable invasion and cou of many of the region’s reefs, severely impacting the fish populations and, in many cases, endangering certainin species which are not given a chance to procreate and to replenish their populations. In the meantime, the domineering species reproduces at astounding rates, thus aggravating the problem.

This endemic situation has become a topic of national concern in islands likeBelize and  Barbados, where interventions have been staged in order to not only raise awareness but to circumvent the effects of the Lionfish’s dominance.  Action has been taken by both public and private sector parties in the form of Lionfish spearfishing derbies, cook-offs and informational media production. However, a lot of the societal perception of the fish has yet to bealtered and it is the attitudes of the total populace that must shift before real change can be seen.


About Caribbean Export

Caribbean Export is a regional export development and trade and investment promotion organisation of the Forum of Caribbean States (CARIFORUM) currently executing the Regional Private Sector Programme (RPSDP) funded by the European Union  under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF)  Caribbean Export’s mission is to increase the competitiveness of Caribbean countries by providing quality export development and trade and investment promotion services through effective programme execution and strategic alliances.

More information about Caribbean Export can be found at  Contact: JoEllen Laryea, PR and Communications, Caribbean Export Development Agency, Tel: +1(246) 436-0578, Fax: +1(246) 436-9999, Email:


design design 3 design 2


Create a free website or blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: