CBD and EU work to increase private sector capacity in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines


Director of Projects at the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), Daniel Best, said two new projects funded by the European Union (EU) are expected to advance poverty reduction efforts and the exportability of goods and services, in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines by increasing opportunities in agriculture.

The two initiatives are the National Standardization and Certification Project for Exportable Service Providers and the Food Safety Certification System Project for Livestock Production and Trade in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.

According to Best, “It is no small task to rebound and rebalance a small open economy that has been affected by multiple shocks, a health crisis and a volcanic eruption. Recognizing these requirements, the Bank, through these two projects and other programs, is making a strong contribution to national recovery. »

Felipe De La Mota, Team Leader, Regional Integration and Trade at the EU, says the projects “support the development of human capital in the services sector leading to the generation of income and foreign currency, the creation of new businesses and the development of specialties”. services. Additionally, value would derive from the creation of employment opportunities, market penetration and expansion, economic growth, poverty reduction in rural communities, reduced unemployment and an increase in knowledge of best practices.

Kesal Peters, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, said at the May 10 launch that the initiatives will help the private sector improve productivity and competitiveness and achieve strong and sustainable economic growth.

The training component of the education project was highlighted by the Minister for Education and National Reconciliation, Curtis King, who added that a “key element in building this new economy is education and training of our people. The new paradigm has seen, and continues to see, huge amounts of investment in the education and training of our people, as we seek to provide relevant, high-quality education and training that is accessible to everyone and everywhere. life long. Citing shortcomings that limit the person’s ability to exploit economic value in markets, the minister praised the project.

The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries, Processing and Labor, Nerissa Gittens McMillan, also noted that farmers need to expand their production facilities to a scale that allows the production of a product. top quality but competitively priced. These adjustments must meet international certification standards, the Food Safety Certification System Project for Livestock Production and Trade in St. Vincent and the Grenadines will help in this regard.

In addition, the development of the burgeoning spa sector will prepare and position the sector for greater exportability, develop a cadre of certified music professionals and an ongoing certification system for increased professionalism and to access new markets and build capacity for other CSME-approved vocations such as security guards and domestics.

Yvanette Baron-George, Deputy Program Manager, CARIFORUM says the country’s decision to adopt CARICOM food safety standards for poultry meat and meat products is a step in the right direction to improve product quality and health and wellness offerings locally and beyond.

The CBD-managed stand-by facility, which supports both initiatives, is part of a wider program of EU support for the implementation of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), which will enhance innovation and intellectual property rights, technical barriers to trade, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, capacity building in the areas of competition, government procurement, customs and trade facilitation.

It also supports the CBD’s strategic objective of reducing poverty and transforming lives through sustainable, resilient and inclusive development. The two grants of over €376,000 were awarded to the government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines for the projects.

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