National dialogue aimed at charting a new course of trade relations with the European Union

Mixed fortunes experienced by Barbadian manufacturers and services providers in the successful penetration of the European market, after the entry into force of the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), has given rise to the need for a strategic national dialogue on the issue. The Barbados Private Sector Trade Team (BPSTT) has taken the initiative to provide an appropriate forum to facilitate this process.

As part of the BPSTT’s efforts to monitor and boost Barbadian businesses trade performance under various Trade Agreements, the agency, will be hosting a forum Wednesday June 17th 2015 at the Savannah Beach Hotel, Hastings Christ Church between 8:30 am and 3:00pm. The session is being hosted in conjunction with the Ministry of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development and the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation (BIDC). By the end of this forum the BPSTT, through key stakeholders would have made an effort to:

  • Give an overview of the current business environment in the European Union (EU);

  • Highlight regional business performance in the (EU) with the intention of adopting various best practices from businesses that have been successful in penetrating the market;

  • Gauge the persistent challenges within the market with the intention of developing a strategy to overcome the challenges;

  • Inform the private sector of the status of the 11th European Development Fund and mechanisms of accessing funding; and

  • Encourage innovation in production of goods and services to achieve export led growth and competitiveness in external markets, with specific emphasis on the EU.

Trade Consultant with the BPSTT noted that “In the present context of slow domestic economic recovery and small population size, exploring external business opportunities for domestic entrepreneurs is one mechanism that must be actively pursued in order to increase revenues and overall growth in the economy.”

The CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement is one avenue in which these objectives could be successfully achieved. Persons interested in attending this forum should RSVP by contacting Ms. Tracey Lovell at 430-6541 or by her eMail.

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