July 2014

Business Processing Sector in Jamaica makes
Significant Strides with
Compete Caribbean Grant

President of the BPIAJ, Yoni Epstein and Operations Senior Specialist, IDB, Harold Arzu shake after signng the agreement.
Jamaica's fast-growing business process outsourcing industry (BPO) is projecting a growth rate of 50 per cent in the next two years, and the creation of 7,000 new jobs.


Some of that growth is expected to be facilitated by the creation of a business incubator for BPO businesses to be developed with a USD500,00 Compete Caribbean grant.


The industry's potential was estimated by president of the Business Process Industry Association of Jamaica (BPIAJ), Yoni Epstein, at the signing ceremony at the IDB's Jamaica office in New Kingston on July 2. "The grant is the biggest thing to happen to our industry for many years. It will kick start the new wave of BPO in Jamaica," he said.


The grant will finance an incubation centre in the Montego Bay Free Zone to assist new investors to more easily enter the Jamaican BPO market. "Jamaica is well established as a destination of choice. There is also more room for Jamaican investors, as there is strong domestic demand from banks, hotels and insurance companies," Epstein further explained. Read More 

Compete Caribbean Assists Grenadian Firm
to Further Develop its Unique and Innovative Business

Donors on tour of the PFW Plant 
Grenadian firm, Protein From Waste and Local Crops Inc. (PFW), has successfully won a bid to demonstrate the viability of small scale protein rendering for animal feed supplementation, using locally available organic and fuel wastes. 


This was made possible through a Compete Caribbean technical assistance grant valued at USD178,020.


The project is the brainchild of James Aronson who gave birth to the PFW concept and subsequently merged it with the discovery of a technology that uses spent motor oil, one of Grenada's most serious disposal problems, as a free fuel to make steam for rendering the protein from waste into feedstock.


Earlier this month donor representatives from Compete Caribbean, DFID, DFATD and CDB visited the PFW Plant in Grenada and expressed positive sentiments about the project including its ability to be easily replicated in other Caribbean jurisdictions. Read More 

The Ornamental Fish Industry in Jamaica Receives Substantial Boost 
Chairman of TCC, Dr. Andre Gordon signs the partnership agreement while (from left) Head of TCC, Dr. Beverley Morgan; Acting Team Leader, Governance Department for International Development (DFID) Caribbean (Jamaica), Bhavna Sharma; Counsellor and Head, Development Cooperation Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development, Canada (DFATD), Marie Legault and IDB Operations Senior Specialist, Jamaica, Harold Arzu look on.
Just about 150 young men and women from more than 50 inner city communities in Jamaica will directly benefit from a USD500,000 Compete Caribbean grant.

The project which started in 2010 under The Competitive Company (TCC), will use the funding to establish an export facility and to improve the cluster's ability to efficiently deliver quality ornamental aquatic products to international buyers at competitive prices.

Speaking at the official signing in New Kingston, Jamaica on July 2, Head of TCC, Dr. Beverley Morgan said one of the most critical goals for this project at the moment is to achieve disease free certification for Jamaica: "It would exponentially grow our opportunities if Jamaica were to become certified as disease free."

Dr. Morgan further indicated that she will be approaching Compete Caribbean, IDB, DFID and DFATD to assist in whatever way they can to help make this objective a reality. She concluded with a solemn promise to the donors that the Ornamental Fish project will bring "nothing but joy" to all stakeholders involved.
Grenada Re-brands with Help From Compete Caribbean

A Compete Caribbean USD500,000 grant has provided the Grenada Hotel and Tourism Association (GHTA) with the resources it needed to assist Grenada with earnestly re-positioning its' brand identity to more closely align with the core niche sectors that have been identified as target markets.

The new mandate includes better positioning to seize new marketing opportunities and to be more adaptable to the dynamic commercial realities of today's new global tourism and hospitality environment.

The new brand tag-line "Pure Grenada" will form the underpinning for the island's new marketing focus, positioning the island as "off-the-beaten path," and a haven for the discerning travel explorer. Read More
St. Kitts & Nevis Hosts Two Successful
Caribbean Growth Forum (CGF) Workshops

The First Accountability Workshop of the St. Kitts and Nevis Chapter reported successfully on progresses in the implementation of the CGF Action Plan, during the period September 1, 2013 until May 31, 2014.  


The event held on June 11 was chaired by Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, The Rt. Hon. Denzil Douglas and was attended by more than 50 representatives from private sector associations, media and public sector.  


Sir Dwight Venner, Governor of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank and Wayne Mitchell, IMF Representative for the ECCU countries, provided opening remarks. This Accountability Workshop is the fifth in the region and follows: Dominican Republic, Jamaica, St. Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

The results in the implementation of the Action Plan were encouraging: Out of the 29 priorities that are included in the agreed action plan, 38% are in progress, 14% are completed and 27% are delayed while 21% of the activities have no milestones to report during this period. Read More  


A second high level Regional Workshop on Technical Training on Policy Delivery, Participatory Governance and Accountability was held on June 12 and 13. 

The regional training was to strengthen the capacity of the CGF Focal Points to deliver the CGF Action Plans and to strengthen the capacity of the private sector representatives to engage with the governments in providing constructive feedback.


A group of 39 stakeholders; 23 from the private sector/civil society and 16 from the public sector from 15 Caribbean countries: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St Lucia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname; attended the Workshop. This is a group of highly committed public and private sector representatives that are championing the CGF in their respective countries.  


SPISE 2014 Welcomes 21 Students

The annual Student Program for Innovation in Science and Engineering (SPISE) is an intensive four-week enrichment residential summer program for Caribbean high-school students who are: (a) Gifted in STEM, (b) Not less than 16 and not more than 18 years of age on July 1st, and (c) Interested in studying and exploring careers in these and related fields. SPISE graduates have been admitted to such prestigious universities as MIT, Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, Yale, Columbia, Cornell, Duke and University of the West Indies (UWI). The CSF believes that one or more of these STEM superstars could create the "next Google" in the Caribbean or become the Region's first Nobel laureate in science.


This year the students will demonstrate their hands-on projects, and present their business plans and Mandarin skits at the conclusion of the program in a public forum on August 15th at the 3Ws Oval on the UWI, Cave Hill, Barbados campus.  Another key feature of the SPISE is that post-SPISE graduates are assisted by the CSF with their university applications, and have the opportunity to participate in research internships organized by the CSF and Caribbean Diaspora for Science, Technology and Innovation (CADSTI). Learn More

GO-CARIBBEAN! International Business and Investment Expo on September 22 and 23 will facilitate the convergence of entrepreneurs, financiers, high net-worth individuals and strategic partners focused on the development and support of Caribbean business across the region and North America. 
It is a place to meet and learn about new business trends, discuss best practices and identify opportunities to increase
investment in the Caribbean and for Caribbean businesses in the Diaspora.  Our goal is to foster greater economic relationships between the Caribbean people and the World. Learn More    

Women Innovators Network in the Caribbean (WINC)

WINC is implementing a hybrid approach in supporting innovative and growth-oriented women entrepreneurs in the Caribbean, with the objective to (i) actively encourage growth-oriented women entrepreneurs to apply and participate in EPIC's Caribbean Mobile Innovation Program (CMIP) and Caribbean Climate Innovation Center (CCIC); and (ii) provide business acceleration service offerings to innovative and growth-oriented entrepreneurs in other sectors.  Across all sectors, WINC will provide a peer-to-peer network to support growth-oriented women entrepreneurs and inspire future women business leaders in the region.


As part of its Entrepreneurship Program for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC), infoDev is seeking a qualified firm with presence in the Caribbean to support the team in the delivery and implementation of the Women Innovators Network in the Caribbean (WINC) program.  Learn More


Participate in the VIII ACF


The VIII Americas Competitiveness Forum (ACF) and Annual Meeting of the Inter-American Competitiveness Network (RIAC) will be held in Trinidad and Tobago during the period October 8th - 10th, 2014, which is the first time the ACF is being held in an English speaking country. The theme of this year's ACF is "The Human Imagination at Work: Driving Competitiveness, Powering Innovation".


Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) will be supporting the participation of CARIFORUM SMEs, entrepreneurs, and aspiring entrepreneurs with innovative products and/or services as exhibitors at the Innovation Village, where they will get an opportunity to showcase their respective products and/or services to a diverse audience consisting of potential customers, business partners, and investors.


Interested parties must create a video pitch no longer than three (3) minutes explaining why they should be selected to be part of the contingent of firms to exhibit at the Innovation Village of the ACF 2014. Learn More   


The 2nd Americas Competitiveness Exchange on
Innovation and Entrepreneurship

The 2nd Americas Competitiveness Exchange, which will take place in Mexico from August 11-15, aims to strengthen the ties between the participants from the visiting countries and Mexico's entrepreneurial ecosystem; to showcase the initiatives that Mexico's private and public sectors are developing; and to create networking opportunities which will foster the creation of even more bilateral and multilateral initiatives between all the participant organizations. Interested applicants learn more here.  



Maxwell Main Road

Christ Church


Tel: 246-627-8500
Email: competecaribbean@iadb.org