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Caribbean Export: Special Call for Proposals- Food Safety


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CARIBBEAN EXPORT FOOD SAFETY NEWS BULLETIN

Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety for CARIFORUM Agro- Processing Firms
 

The Caribbean Export Development Agency officially announces the publication of the Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety for CARIFORUM agro- processing firms to receive financial assistance as part of the Regional Private Sector Development Programme (RPSDP) funded by the European Union under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF).
 
The Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety is a reimbursable grant funding facility specifically designed to provide financial assistance to legally registered agro processing firms within the CARIFORUM region who are exporting or have the potential to export their products to the European Union. It is a facility for firms looking for funding to support their capacity building to meet the food production standards of the European Union (EU) market.

While the challenge also exists among the large enterprises in the Region, it is very prevalent among small, medium and micro-sized enterprises (MSMEs).  The allocation of this funding is hoped to ensure that goods of regional origin are produced under standard quality control conditions to meet the sanitary and regulatory requirements of the EU marketplace (such as HACCP, GAPs, GlobalGAP, ISO 14000, Fair Trade Certification, BRC, QF 1000, Primus GFS etc).
  
The Agency is offering, with this Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety, grants of up to 10,000 euros which represent a maximum of 70% of the total project cost to CARIFORUM based agro-processing firms. Firms that are exporting or demonstrate their potential to export and who meet the eligibility criteria are encouraged to apply to this Call.
 
The deadline for this Special Call for Proposals – Food Safety is July 9, 2014 and more information can be found at www.carib-export.com. For more details or to take part in the Call, please contact Sam Kruiner, Special Advisor – Export Development at skruiner@carib-export.com or +1(246) 436-0578, Fax: +1(246) 436-9999.

http://www.carib-export.com/2014/05/special-call-for-proposals-food-safety/

 

CARIBBEAN EXPORT URGES PRIVATE SECTOR TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF AVAILABLE FUNDS


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Bridgetown, BARBADOS, February 28, 2014.  Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) urges the regions private sector to take advantage of the funds made available under the Direct Assistance Grant Scheme facilitated by the Agency as part of of the Regional Private Sector Development Programme (RPSDP) funded by the European Union under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF).

 

Firms can apply for grants of up to €30,000 providing firms meet the eligibility criteria, their applications are accepted and they are exporting or demonstrate the potential to export goods and services.

 

Throughout 2012 and 2013 the Agency has conducted grant proposal workshops across CARIFORUM to prepare BSOs and firms ahead of this current Call for Proposals that was announced on January 17, 2014.   In the previous Call for Proposals in 2012 the Agency received two hundred and thirty-nine (239) applications that attained or exceeded the eligibility threshold.It is hoped that in this penultimate year of the 10th EDF the Agency receives a record number of applicants to maximise the utilisation of the funds made available and increase the number of businesses that are awarded.

  Continue reading “CARIBBEAN EXPORT URGES PRIVATE SECTOR TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF AVAILABLE FUNDS”

Caribbean Export Hosts the Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Financial Services


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Bridgetown, Barbados, December 10, 2013. The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) in collaboration with The Government of Barbados convened a meeting on the Financial Services sector in CARIFORUM at the Radisson Hotel, Barbados on December 9, 2013.

The meeting of Ministers with responsibility for financial services and key industry professionals was assembled to develop the strategic direction relating to the continued development of the industry, to develop recommendations relating to the governance structure of the regional initiative, and to determine the strategic engagement of the Overseas Countries and Territories in the overall process.

Chaired by The Hon. Donville Inniss, Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development, Barbados the meeting was convened within the context of the importance of a vibrant financial services industry to the sustained economic development of the region, and the severe challenges facing that industry in light of the global economic crisis.

In particular, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), in which the European Union (EU) plays a key role, has continued to express concerns about the status of regional jurisdictions. Moreover, CARIFORUM countries remain cognizant of commitments to cooperate on finance issues outlined in the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) especially as it relates to tax policy and administration.

In the opening address, Minister Inniss noted that the Financial Services is the second largest contributor to GDP in the Caribbean represented by 17% GDP and stressed that “when it comes to IFCs we have no more time to waste.  This sector is way too important to our economies and societies”.

Caribbean International Financial Services Centres (IFCs) have come under increased pressure and scrutiny through a number of developed country led initiatives such as the Foreign Account tax Compliance Act (FATCA), anti-money laundering standards, tax base erosion and profit shifting and exchange of information standards.  Many of these initiatives have been driven by the desire to stem the perceived leakage of tax revenue from developed states to the region. As a result, several countries known as tax havens have had to either shut down their financial centres or implement a number of measures to continue to access bilateral aid.

The Hon. Rudranath Indarsingh Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance and the Economy, Trinidad and Tobago, during his opening remarks stated that despite Trinidad and Tobago’s current dependency on the export of hydrocarbon products, they have “intensified efforts to diversify the economy, identified the financial services industry as an attractive and rewarding venture.   In this regard, Trinidad and Tobago has signaled the re-launching of the International Financial Centre by building a Financial Institutions Support Services (FINeSS) Industry.”  Moreover, “Trinidad and Tobago is working assiduously in finalizing the Model Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) process before December 31, 2013.  Once signed, all Foreign Financial Institutions (FFIs) would automatically be FATCA compliant and included in the appropriate list to be published in December.” Continue reading “Caribbean Export Hosts the Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Financial Services”

Crafting a New Private Sector Advocacy Model


By Pamela Coke-HamiltonPamela Coke Hamilton

My good friend and colleague David Jessop, wrote in his recent column titled ‘Wanted: An aggressive regional private sector voice’, on an issue which has been at the forefront of recent deliberations within CARICOM and which both the Secretary General of CARICOM, Ambassador Irwin Larocque as well as the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, the Hon Kamla Persad Bissessar have indicated are critical to driving the regional integration process.  The issue of a strong, credible, vocal private sector voice at the regional level.

While it is conceded that there currently exists a lacuna in the regional space, of such a private sector entity, I believe that it is a colossal leap to suggest that the “silence” is “an indicator that regional economic integration and a single direction of economic travel may no longer be achievable.” I would like to suggest rather that the silence has not been as complete as assumed and that the regional leaders, both within the public and private sectors, are moving expeditiously towards ensuring that the structural gaps affecting effective private sector advocacy at the regional level are addressed and corrective action implemented.  Additionally while regionally the private sector has not been very active as a cohesive unit, I dare say that in addition to Martinique and Guadeloupe and the Dominican Republic mentioned in the referenced article, the Jamaican and Trinidad and Tobago private sector groups through the PSOJ and TTMA among others, at a national level are quite active and influential, driving policies that are then raised, through their Ministers at COTED and the other organs of CARICOM/CARIFORUM.

Moreover, the idea of Barbados’ former Prime Minister Owen Arthur, of a vibrant Caribbean Business Council (CBC) is in fact very much alive and has re-emerged with much greater force within the last six months with  a mandate to Caribbean Export Development Agency, emanating from the last COTED to undertake an analysis of the current situation, initiate wide ranging consultations on the factors that affected implementation of the CBC, and submit a proposal and recommendations to the COTED on the way forward. Continue reading “Crafting a New Private Sector Advocacy Model”

Latin American and Caribbean Economic System (SELA) workshop


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The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) in partnership with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), and the Latin American and Caribbean Economic System (SELA) held its first workshop today, 22nd October, 2013, on the Internationalization of Agricultural SMEs in Belize.  

 

The workshop was geared at addressing the challenges faced by small and medium sized agricultural enterprises coupled with developing viable strategies to achieve these defined objectives in the long term.

 

SELA facilitated this process by acting as a catalyst conducting courses and workshops on the internationalization of SME’s, supported by experts from public and private organizations in several countries both regionally and internationally. In this manner, SELA performs the export promotion of micro and small enterprises in the agricultural sector and supports the growing industry.

  Continue reading “Latin American and Caribbean Economic System (SELA) workshop”

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