Caribbean Export Development Agency launches first virtual expo event
As services industries and providers across the region learn to navigate the global pandemic, Caribbean Export Development Agency in collaboration with the Belize Coalition of Services Provides, the Jamaica Coalition of Services Industries and the Trinidad and Tobago Coalition of Services Industries are stepping in to host a training programme to enhance the export-readiness of services SMEs.
Commencing on October 1st, 2020. This programme will support thirty (30) services providers operating in the business and professional services, and information, communication, and technology sectors (ICT) and is funded by the European Union as part of the 11th EDF Regional Private Sector Development Programme.
Ten entrepreneurs will be selected from each country to undertake the training and subsequently, six participants from each country will be selected to receive one on one coaching based on their performance during the workshop. The objective of the coaching is to provide them with feedback to complete their export plans.
The training will take place virtually over five days and will provide an opportunity for participating businesses to develop export plans, access regional and international markets and develop their global brands.
The Services Go Global (SGG) programme was developed to optimize the CARIFORUM region’s export of services by building the capacity of service providers to capitalize on opportunities under the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), CARICOM Single Market & Economy (CSME) and other existing trade agreements; and developing national capacity through a cadre of certified trainers for the SGG programme, geared to assist SME’s in the services sector. The workshop will be facilitated by master trainers, Michelle Hustler (Barbados) and Dr. Nsombi Jaja (Jamaica).
“Services play a crucial role in the development of the economies in CARIFORUM, not just as a sector but also due to the significant impact on other sectors such as the manufacturing sector. Caribbean Export is deeply committed to the development of the region’s services sector and it is hoped that firms large and small capitalize upon this opportunity to build their capacity to take advantage of the CARIFORUM-EU EPA and importantly during this pandemic build their resilience and their ability to support other sectors to better integrate into the new global economy.” expressed Allyson Francis, Services Specialist at Caribbean Export.
There are currently a number of opportunities for small firms to enter new markets, and it is anticipated these will be increased once they have participated in the SERVICES Go Global programme. This human and institutional capacity building initiative goes hand in hand with another joint project between the development agencies, which aims to enhance the sustainability of the national services coalitions which provide critical business support services to local service providers including training, advocacy and export promotions.
“SERVICES Go Global is a timely and comprehensive training programme for service exporters, and this training comes at an opportune time as businesses in Trinidad and Tobago seek to pivot their services,” shared Lara Quentrall – Thomas, President, Trinidad and Tobago Coalition of Services Industries. Dr. Dionne Chamberlain, President, Belize Coalition for Services Providers echoed Ms. Quentrall – Thomas’s sentiments, and confirmed that the course will not only prove valuable to service providers across the region but will enhance their own export efforts in the process.
The programme was developed and delivered by Global Links Network, certified international trade professionals who have delivered services training in over 50 countries worldwide over the past 20 years. To date, SERVICES Go Global is the only export readiness training programme for services exporters and would-be exporters in the world. The programme follows a logical, sequenced approach to exporting – a ‘Roadmap’ – and takes the exporters through four stages and twelve modules of export preparation. With the completion of each module, elements of the service provider’s export plan are developed. Service providers who undertake the course leave having completed the essential elements of their export plan and having gained the valuable skills necessary to successfully engage in the international marketplace.