Caribbean Export Invests in Market Intelligence


Bridgetown, BARBADOS, June 10, 2014. The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) convened a high level regional consultation to examine the rationale for market intelligence and its relevance to building export competitiveness; and to secure agreement on the development of a regional export strategy. The consultations took place from June 5th– 6th at the Radisson Aquatica Resort, Barbados. The meeting was attended by stakeholders from across the region.

In her opening remarks Executive Director for Caribbean Export, Pamela Coke Hamilton, stressed that “Market research and competitive intelligence can help, and is necessary for helping the CARIFORUM private sector to better understand a number of issues in export markets such as the market entry requirements for their products, consumer demand patterns and trends, competitor and substitute products, distribution networks and the regulatory requirements that affect their businesses.”

Caribbean Export has a mandate under the 10th EDF Regional Private Sector Development Programme (RPSDP) which speaks to the development of a regional trade and market intelligence system. The Agency’s efforts to date have focused on the delivery of products and services based on the trade information needs identified by the private sector and Business Support Organisations (BSOs) across the region. An important tool in the arsenal is the Caribbean Export Market Intelligence Portal (CE-MIP), an online tool which provides searchable market research features as well as a library of market intelligence products.

This consultation meeting also enabled much needed open dialogue between the stakeholders to help inform decisions on the formulation of regional export strategies. There is a direct link between market intelligence and export strategy development, which must be understood if the trajectory of regional exports is to be augmented. “We must also identify and select attractive markets based on global supply and demand trends, trade flows and market access for our products. Understanding those markets is invaluable before engaging in any firm-specific building initiatives,” stated Coke-Hamilton.

Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development, Hon. Donville Inniss reiterated the Executive Director’s remarks, commenting that what is of “paramount importance for firms is their ability to design and implement marketing programmes to communicate the existence of their products within external markets and to put in place feedback mechanisms through which they improve on their product offerings”. “Far too often we are still going according to gut feelings or personal contacts. We must accept that market research is an integral part of the firms activities into which appropriate human and financial capital must be invested.”

Caribbean Export also unveiled an Exporters Toolkit the aim of which is to provide a suite of information, guides, and templates to support region’s private sector in their efforts for exporting. The two-day consultations concluded with stakeholders endorsing the CE-MIP and confirming the need for continued build out of the current market intelligence products such as the Market Pointers and Market Opportunity Briefs. Stakeholders also endorsed the development of regional strategies for agro-processing, creative industries, and higher-education services but with a focus on brand development, enhancing access to the global value chain for regional producers and exporters, and strengthening of IP elements; and gave the thumbs-up for the Caribbean Exporter’s Toolkit expected to be launched shortly.

Continue reading “Caribbean Export Invests in Market Intelligence”

Partial Scope Agreement with Guatemala


Belize signed a Partial Scope Agreement with Guatemala on 26th June, 2006 in Belize City. Eight years later, on 28th February, 2014, Belize hosted the first meeting of the Administrative Commission established through the provisions of the Agreement. The Commission has direct oversight of four technical committees also created by the Agreement to resolve trade and trade related issues in the areas of Customs Procedures of Rules of Origin (ROO), Plant and Animal Health (SPS), Standards and Quality (TBT) and Land Transportation. . The objective of this meeting was to gather the relevant stakeholders  to make effective the administrative mechanism that would facilitate the resolution of cross border trading issues between the two countries.


Ms. Margaret Ventura, mistress of ceremony, opened with Belize’s national prayer; followed by the Head of the Belize Delegation, Chief Executive Officer Michael Singh, who reaffirmed the Government of Belize’s strong interest and commitment in commerce between Belize and Guatemala . He also noted the importance of conducting trade in an official manner and in accordance with the Partial Scope Agreement (PSA). The Head of the Guatemala delegation, Vice Minister Maria Luisa Flores Villagran echoed similar concerns and commitments from the Government of Guatemala. Continue reading “Partial Scope Agreement with Guatemala”

The Importance of Excellent Customer Service & Feedback Surveys

Is offering a good customer service important? Of course it is. You don’t need me to tell you that, because we all know it already. Although that’s a sure truth, it doesn’t harm anybody to take a look at the stats showing why we need to pay attention to this part of our businesses.


Customer service is important because it can make the difference in your business. It can be the reason for a customer to switch either towards you or towards your competitors, depending on who offers the best customer service. A research conducted by RightNow on Customer Experience Impact in 2011 revealed that 89% of customers gave up being a company’s client and turned to competitors after receiving poor customer service. That’s quite a high percentage, definitely worth considering before raising the voice at your client because he’s asking you the same question over and over again. Continue reading “The Importance of Excellent Customer Service & Feedback Surveys”

Compete Caribbean

Submit your proposal to Compete Caribbean by October 31, 2013 and compete for up to US$500,000 to develop your idea! We welcome any innovative project, from any economic sector and any size of firm. However all firms must be resident in a CARIFORUM country and be prepared to provide counterpart funding of 50% of the cost of the project (of which up to 50% can be in kind). 


No matter how rich a country is, how small or big it is, no nation is self-sufficient. It will never be totally independent from the rest and have everything it needs. Every country, no matter how powerful it is, needs raw materials from other countries to produce products that it needs or that is needed by other countries. In short, every country is involved in import export transactions.


Whether you are getting ready to export or expanding export sales, BELTRAIDE provides a range of resources for our exporters of goods and service.  This includes providing information on national policies and strategies, export best practices and providing references to tools and agencies that contribute to export development.


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