BIDC and BCSI Joint Trade Mission to the French Caribbean

BARBADOS is seeking to strengthen business linkages with Martinique and Guadeloupe.

A 22-member contingent of Barbadian manufacturing and services companies and business support organisations will be heading into the French territories to participate in a trade mission scheduled for November 17-24, 2010.

The mission is being spearheaded jointly by the Barbados Investment & Development Corporation (BIDC) and the Barbados Coalition of Services Industries (BCSI) Consulting firm, Nouvelle Dynamique Martiniquaise (NOUDYMA) has been contracted to provide the matchmaking and mission logistics services in Martinique and in Guadeloupe, consultants, La Tribu, will facilitate the business to business meetings and other arrangements. It is anticipated that the mission will be executed with support from the Chambre de Commerce et D’Industrie de la Martinique in Martinique and the Chambre de Commerce et d’Industrie de Pointre a Pitre in Guadeloupe.

During the one week in-country visits, the Barbadian delegates, representing firms from the food and beverages, apparel, construction, renewable energy, IT solutions, cultural and financial services sectors, will engage in business to business meetings, consult with business support organisations and agencies and explore opportunities for the development of trade relations, joint ventures and other investments.

Representatives from the Barbados Manufacturers Association and the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) Implementation Unit are also a part of the delegation, which will be in Martinique November 18 & 19 and will move on to Guadeloupe, November 22 & 23. Open House sessions are scheduled for November 18 at La Bateliere hotel in Martinique and November 22 at La Creole Beach hotel in Guadeloupe, where persons interested in doing business with Barbados are invited to attend.

The mission is considered timely as it coincides with efforts by the CARIFORUM/FCORs/OCTs Task Force on Trade and Investment to strengthen relations between the French Caribbean Outmost Regions (FCORs) and the countries of CARIFORUM. The objective of the Task Force, which is managed by the Caribbean Export Development Agency, is to facilitate the gradual integration of the Caribbean countries and territories into the regional and world economy, through specific actions to increase policy dialogue, enhance business information, strengthen networks of business support organisations and promote investment opportunities.

The recently signed CARIFORUM/EU Economic Partnership Agreement is being considered a key platform for deepening Barbados’ trade with its French neighbours and the wider European market for select niche goods and services.

Barbados already enjoys a longstanding relationship with the French territories manifested in the areas of education, tourism, and entertainment. It is hoped that the trade mission will succeed in contributing to the creation of a bridge to sustaining existing relations and creating new ones between Barbados, Martinique and Guadeloupe.

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Monday, November 15, 2010