Making Private Sector

Development A Priority  

February, 2014
Belize: Projects Kick Off
On February 6th, a Cluster stakeholder meeting was held to kick off implementation of that operation with the Belize Shrimp Growers' Association (BSGA).
Compete Caribbean has worked with the Belize Shrimp Cluster to develop their Competitiveness Improvement Plan (CCIP), which details how to improve the capacity of the Cluster to serve selected niche markets in the Caribbean region, North America and Europe.

Since the CCIP was developed, the Cluster has achieved agreement from the Dutch Sustainable Initiative (IDH) to fund the activities that were identified within the CCIP but which exceeded the Compete Caribbean funding cap. This is very exciting, as it now positions the Cluster to be able to address each of the activities detailed in the innovative market strategy.


Additionally, Compete Caribbean has contracted the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to support the implementation of the Belize Shrimp Cluster project. Beyond the implementation support, the WWF Mesoamerican Reef Office in Guatemala and the WWF Headquarters in the USA are now coordinating with Compete Caribbean to harmonize promotional efforts and explore the possibility of co-branding media related to the project. This opportunity promises to be a great experience for both development agencies, and opens the door to future collaboration.


At the same time, the Innovation Window (IW) of the Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund, is also supporting Caribbean Premier Products Ltd. in the development of its Innovative Business Plan (IBP).
This is a requirement for all finalists under the window. Clients with completed IBPs will be invited to submit them to compete for grant awards of up to US $500,000 to implement the improvements elaborated in the IBP.
Jamaica: Progress On The Rise
Compete Caribbean Executive Director, Sylvia Dohnert and DFATD Counsellor for Jamaica, Marie Legault in deep conversation.
The Jamaica Chapter of the Caribbean Growth Forum (CGF) held its first accountability workshop on February 20, 2014. 

The CGF Jamaica Chapter provided a detailed report on the progress for 46 actions contained in their dashboard.


Progress to date indicates that five actions were fully completed, 18 are in progress, nine are delayed and 14  did not meet any milestones during the reporting period and in the spirit of transparency, the event was streamed live on the Jamaican radio station Power 106.


Jamaica will hold a second Accountability Workshop in the next six months to take further stock of progress. In addition, a regional event is envisioned later in the year where countries will have an opportunity to share experiences and lessons learned in the effort to move reforms forward, through public-private dialogue. Read More

St. Vincent: Strengthening Investment Promotion
The Rt. Hon Prime Minister of St. Vincent & The Grenadines, Ralph Gonsalves met with the Compete Caribbean team.
High level discussions were the order of the day when a team from Compete Caribbean visited St. Vincent & The Grenadines recently.
The team visited St. Vincent & The Grenadines  on February 11 and 12, led by Executive Director of Compete Caribbean, Sylvia Dohnert and also comprised: IDB Integration & Trade Lead Specialist, Mario Umaña and Compete Caribbean's OECS Coordinator, Alejandro Carrión. 
The purpose of the visit was to continue discussions on the development of the pipeline project: Strengthening Investment Promotion in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. 


In order to introduce the pipeline project and receive feedback, the team met with key public sector authorities including:   His Excellency Sir Frederick Ballantyne, Governor General of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; Honorable Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Economic Planning;   Honorable Camilo Gonsalves, Minister of Foreign AffairsHonorable Saboto Caesar, Ministry of Agriculture, Industry, Forestry, Fisheries and Rural Transformation and Honorable Cecil McKie, Minister of Tourism, Sports and Culture.



Furthermore, the Compete team also participated in a workshop attended by more than 30 key private and public sector stakeholders with the purpose of discussing their views on Saint Vincent and the Grenadines prospects' for foreign direct investment.


Trinidad: Private Sector Assessment
Soliciting feedback on the Trinidad & Tobago Private Sector Assessment Report (PSAR) was the basis of a joint dialogue hosted by the Ministry of Planning and Sustainable Development in Trinidad in February.
The joint dialogue was convened to get private sector feedback on specific project proposals and to determine methods of implementation.
Over 60 private and public sector persons attended the consultation which reviewed proposed projects: Energy Services, Consumer Protection and Market Efficiency, and youth employment. After a spirited dialogue, it was determined that the PSAR was a useful document which must inspire meaning ful actionrather than more studies and discussion.
To this end, The Trinidad & Tobago IDB Country Office communicated its commitment to mobilise smaller more focused groups and to also identify funding to support project implementation.

The annual Student Program for Innovation in Science and Engineering (SPISE) is an intensive four-week enrichment residential summer program for gifted Caribbean high-school students who are interested in studying and exploring careers in science and engineering.


The goal is to help address the low numbers of Caribbean students pursuing advanced degrees in science and engineering, and to groom the next generation of science, engineering technology and business leaders in the Region.


In 2014, approximately 20 students will participate free of cost, owing to generous support of sponsors, Compete Caribbean included.


SPISE 2014 will run from July 19 - August 16. Application deadline is March 31, 2014 and further details can be obtained by visiting:

SPISE or by contacting Prof. Cardinal Warde at or




Reigniting FDI Dialogue

Compete Caribbean recently presented the Government of Antigua with a Foreign Direct Investment promotion strategy for that territory.


Productive meetings were conducted with the Hon. Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer and members of his cabinet as well as the Leader of the Opposition, Gaston Browne, to seek public sector support for implementation of recommendations contained in the strategy. 


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