EU provides financial aid for regional food importers
ROSEAU, Dominica, Wednesday October 12, 2011 – Half a million euros are being provided for the region’s food exporters through a European Union Special Assistance Programme to help them prepare for competition from their Canadian and European counterparts.
The program will commence October 26, with the launch of a two-month pilot in Jamaica.
It will allow for the staging of national consultations, and advocacy and sensitization initiatives to provide affected exporters in CARIFORUM member states to respond to what has been described as “very complex” new legislative requirements for existing and anticipated food safety.
Companies will also be able to access up to €5,000, which may be used to pay costs associated with carrying out needs assessments and procedures.
Firms wanting to access more than the Special Assistance Programme allows will be able to apply for up to an additional €30,000 under the Direct Assistance Grant Scheme program, a release from the Caribbean Export Development Agency (CEDA) stated.
“As an Agency charged with building the export capacity of CARIFORUM companies, we must take a leading role in ensuring that whenever regional exports are threatened or compromised we respond and respond quickly,” said Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Executive Director of CEDA.
“We owe it to the security of Regional enterprise that success is not sidelined by inertia or indecisiveness. Our companies must be able to respond at the same rate as their competitors,” she added.