Businesses losing out on opportunities

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Thursday October 28, 2010 – Jamaica’s Minister of Industry Investment and Commerce, Karl Samuda, says some Jamaican businesses are losing out by not exploiting preferential arrangements in the United States.

Making reference to the Caribbean Basin Initiative (CBI), he said that Jamaica had “taken its eyes off the ball” with regards to fully exploiting that facility.

“There is the leather craft; there is the agro-industrial sector, peppers, spices, a number of products that can be made and would have preferential markets in North America that are simply not being engaged,” he said.

Samuda urged the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC) to try to educate small and micro-business owners about the many opportunities available, and said the Government would put in place systems to remove barriers preventing access.

The Centre is a partnership between the JBDC and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) under the Kingston Urban Renewal Project (KURP) which began in April, 2008. 

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the JBDC, Valerie Veira, explained that it would specifically target persons who had received food preparation training under KURP, providing them with certified hands-on training and business development guidelines.

She also said that food vendors and cook shop operators would receive training in food sanitation, menu development and business operations. Food processors that manufacture products such as jams, jellies, sauces and seasonings would also be able to conduct formulation and testing sessions under the guidance of the JBDC’s food technologists.

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