Business Forum to Enhance the Level of Trade and Investment between CARIFORUM & the European Union

The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) in partnership with the African, Caribbean and Pacific Business Climate Facility (BizClim), the UK Department for International Development (DFID), and the European Union (EU) will be hosting the 2nd CARIFORUM-EU Business Forum in collaboration with the CARIFORUM Directorate, the CARICOM Secretariat, and Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), on August 8 and 9, 2012 at the Grosvenor House, Buckingham Palace Road, London, England.

{IMAGE VIA: B’dos Advocate, online} Sr Trade Policy Advisor, C’bean Export – Carlos Wharton

Under the theme, “Making the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) Work”, the main objectives of the Business Forum are to create awareness about the EPA and to promote business opportunities within sectors that are readily positioned to do business in the EU, with a special focus on business environment issues and impediments to trade and investment between the two regions. The Forum is therefore designed to enhance the level of trade and investment between CARIFORUM States and the EU.

More specifically, “the objective of this Initiative is to expose CARIFORUM producers to potential partners in Europe and to encourage them to do more business together”, commented Carlos Wharton, Senior Trade Policy Advisor, Caribbean Export. “Additionally the initiative is designed to explore those regulatory issues that may create challenges to exporting and doing business between CARIFORUM States and the European Union, as well as develop suitable solutions to mitigate against those aspects of the requirements that may be challenging to CARIFORUM and EU business persons”, Wharton concluded.

The Business Forum creates the ideal setting for businesspersons and representatives from select CARIFORUM Business Support Organisations (BSO’s) to engage potential clients, investors, distributors and partners from Europe as well as with business representatives from Africa and the Pacific. Riding on the Olympic games, there will also be a 10-minute screening of Caribbean Export’s documentary, Built to Last, which focuses on fifty years of regional sporting excellence.

The sectors to be covered during the Forum are Manufacturing and Cultural Industries. Specific focus will be placed on agro-processing, music, audiovisual, and fashion. The 2nd CARIFORUM-EU Business Forum is the focal point of Caribbean Export’s London Engage initiative which runs from August 4 – 9, 2012, Grosvenor House, London. The Forum builds on two study tours in Europe that took forty-four (44) selected Caribbean businesses to three European countries, to meet with potential partners and identify key factors of success for exporting to Europe.

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