#TurksandCaicos, March 8, 2021 – Home grown investment appears to be poised to be elevated, incentivized and prioritized according to the new Progressive National Party (PNP) Government Administration in its Throne Speech, which was on Parliament Opening and Swearing in day delivered by Her Excellency, Anya Williams, (Acting) Governor of the Turks and Caicos Islands.
“Over the years, our dependence on FDI driven development has led to unintended consequences, instead of policy driven outcomes and results.
To grow and diversify the TCI economy will require a strong combination of domestic and foreign direct investments.
My Government’s new investment policy will place emphasis on domestic investment, including funding sources for qualifying start-ups and existing entities – especially in the productive sector.”
This was an early message in the 14-page Speech, which is a traditional conveyance on the intention of the new government, which in this case has been given a massive mandate after winning governance 14 to 1, against the People’s Democratic Movement on Friday February 19, 2021.
In order to achieve this more balanced approach to investment, which gives the domestic investor preferential standing is an overhaul of Invest Turks and Caicos Agency, again.
“My Government will revamp Invest TCI to make it more effective in investment promotion and facilitation, attracting new investors and retaining existing ones.
We will augment the team with world class commercial business and legal expertise and balance customer concerns against the different regulatory goals of agencies through better inter-governmental communication.”
Listed were the results these changes of the investment unit should bring, including: Removal of barriers to and direct concessions in favour of domestic investment; Rebalance the current allocation of land use which was driven by foreign investors with an efficient and equitable land use policy; Incentivise joint-ventures and partnerships between FDI and local entrepreneurs especially in the productive sectors; Establish minimum investment thresholds for stand- alone FDI entities and strengthen compliance measures in the restricted business categories.
Development Agreements will also become more simplified and strategic.
“Repeal the Encouragement of Development Ordinance and replace it with a new investment promotion legal framework that focuses on domestic investment, and genuine long-term alliances and partnerships with foreign investors. Restructure the revenue system to eliminate the need for complicated development agreements and Create new types of investments.”
Premier Hon C. Washington Misick and the PNP’s message through H.E. Williams shared a new mantra for the party it seems; that this new session of Parliament is about creating wealth opportunity and equality; Misick dubbed it ‘the People’s Time.’
“We have made significant gains in some of the measurements of development, such as life expectancy; better access by our people to primary, secondary, and tertiary education; healthcare; improved infrastructure and greater access to electricity and clean water.
Regrettably, our people have not benefitted as much as they should from the significant growth in our GDP. Far too many remain on the margins and barely eke out an existence.
The next fifty years must be for and about the people. Everything we do must be centred on their wellbeing, welfare and wealth creation.”
The First sitting of the First meeting of the First session of the 12th Legislature was held on Friday March 5, 2021 at the Parade Grounds in Grand Turk, where Covid-19 public health protocols were observed.
The Speaker for the House of Assembly is Hon Gordon Burton; his deputy is South Caicos Member, Hon. Rev. John Malcolm.
USA Caribbean Investment Forum: Partnering for Sustained Development in the Caribbean 2023 Event Recap
The USA Caribbean Investment Forum took place over two days last week at the New York Marriott Marquis Times Square. The event, hosted by the Caribbean Association of Investment Promotion Agencies (CAIPA) in partnership with representatives of the CARICOM Consular Corps (namely, the Consulates General of Trinidad & Tobago, Barbados, St. Vincent & the Grenadines and Antigua & Barbuda), brought together government officials, investment promotion agencies, entrepreneurs, and business leaders from the Caribbean diaspora to connect, engage in thoughtful discussions, and explore investment opportunities throughout the Caribbean.
Fostering International Collaboration
The event featured distinguished speakers and representatives from both the US and Caribbean governments. Consuls General Mr. Mackie Holder (Barbados), Mr. Jerome Andre Laveau (Trinidad & Tobago), and Mr. Rondy McIntosh (Saint Vincent and the Grenadines) along with Jeanette Moy, Commissioner of the NYS Office of General Services, Edward Mermelstein, NYC Commissioner of International Affairs, and Molly Bauer, Industry Development Associate from the NY Governor’s Office, shed light on the initiatives that New York City, which is home to so many Caribbean Diaspora, is implementing to support economic collaboration between the regions.
Hon. Kenneth Bryan, Minister for Tourism & Ports, Cayman Islands, and Chair of Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) and Hon. E. Jay Saunders, Deputy Premier, Minister of Finance, Trade and Investment, Turks and Caicos Islands delivered insights via keynote speeches and held candid discussions during panel and Q&A sessions. The event served as a unique opportunity to communicate in an open and honest forum with two esteemed leaders from the Caribbean about investing in the region.
Promoting Investment Opportunities
CAIPA welcomed representatives from Invest Barbados, Invest Dominica, Grenada Investment Development Corporation (GIDC), InvesTT (Trinidad and Tobago), Invest Turks and Caicos, St. Kitts Investment Promotion Agency (SKIPA), Invest St. Lucia, Invest St. Vincent & the Grenadines, the Bahamas Investment Authority, the Curacao Investment and Export Promotion Agency (CINEX), and the Sint Maarten Ministry of Tourism, Economy, Transport and Telecommunications, to discuss various opportunities for investment in their respective countries and how their agencies support and facilitate potential investors.
Private sector companies including the St. James School of Medicine, Century21 Guyana, Ethniv, and Homestrings joined the forum to discuss their current active projects in the Caribbean. They detailed how they’ve worked with local governments and institutions to successfully launch and operate their businesses in the Caribbean, along with the potential opportunities for continued growth.
Understanding How Caribbean Financial Institutions Facilitate Investment
The Forum brought together key representatives from Caribbean financial and economic development institutions: IDB Lab (Ms. Magdalena Coronel, Chief Investment Officer), the National Commercial Bank Jamaica LTD (Mr. Jeffrey Brown, Head, Loans Structuring and Syndications), USAID (Mr. Mervyn Farroe, USAID representative for the Eastern and Southern Caribbean), and the Caribbean Development Bank (Ms. Lisa Harding, Private Sector Development Specialist) to detail how these organizations facilitate and support private investment in the Caribbean.
Attendees had the opportunity to meet directly with CAIPA member countries during business meetings. These one-on-one conversations were valuable opportunities to speak directly with key stakeholders in order to advance projects and forge direct relationships.
The inaugural USA Caribbean Investment Forum was a great success due to the collaboration and engagement from individuals representing a wide range of sectors, organizations, and countries – all united under the goal of driving economic growth in the Caribbean and taking advantage of the enormous opportunities available in the region. https://www.investincaribbean.org/news-center/sign-up-for-our-newsletter to sign up for our newsletter.CAIPA and the representatives of the CARICOM Consular Corps are proud to have facilitated these conversations and supported deepening of relationships with key stakeholders throughout the US and the Caribbean. We look forward to our next event, which will be held on 6-8 March in Miami (Caribbean Logistics Investment Conference 2024) – focused on attracting investments into logistics and transportation by sea and air as well as e-commerce logistics and industrial logistics parks throughout the Caribbean. Stay tuned for more details! If you or anyone you know is interested in joining the CAIPA mailing list, please visit:
Early-Childhood Institutions in St. Catherine Get Time Clocks
#Kingston, September 26, 2023 – Two early-childhood institutions in Kitson Town, St. Catherine, have received 15 time clocks each from educator, Jillian Wray-Robinson, with support from Food For the Poor (FFP).
Speaking at the handover of the clocks at the Kitson Town Basic School on September 25, Ms. Wray-Robinson said they are an important resource for the young students and can help them learn to value time.
“This is where my Foundation was dug, and as an educator, I am giving back and taking the time to invest in the future. It is very important; time is money and money is time, and if they learn how to read the clock, it will become of importance to them,” she said.
Principal of the school, Charline Nathon, said she was grateful for the items, noting that the donation was timely.
“I am sure the children will use it to the best of their ability. The clock is what we are doing in the curriculum – they learn to read the clock,” the Principal said.
Speaking at the handover of the clocks at the Old Road Early Childhood Centre, Ms. Wray-Robinson told the audience that her daughter spent her first year of formal education at the school, and it was a delight to assist them in obtaining the 15 items.
“After carefully looking at the curriculum, I know it will be useful to them (students). School begins on time, and ends with time, and we want our children to learn how to read the clock, and how to tell the time,” she said.
Principal of the school, June Maxwell, said the clocks will help her students, and “we will truly use the resources to the best of our knowledge, and ability”.
Contact: Garfield L. Angus
CTO mourns the passing of former chairman Obediah Wilchcombe
#BARBADOS (September 26, 2023) – The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) deeply mourns the loss of distinguished Bahamian leader and former chairman of the inter-regional body, Obediah Wilchcombe.
“We extend our heartfelt prayers and condolences to Minister Wilchcombe’s family, as well as the government and people of the Bahamas. He was a true champion for the people of the Bahamas and the wider Caribbean region,” remarked Kenneth Bryan, CTO Chairman and Minister of Tourism and Ports of the Cayman Islands.
Chairman Bryan recalled Minister Wilchcombe held the position of CTO Chairman twice (2002-2004 and 2016-2017) while serving as Minister of Tourism for the Bahamas, and contributed significantly to the advancement of sustainable tourism development in the Caribbean.
Chairman Bryan noted that the CTO plans to honor the life and legacy of “this eminent Bahamian leader” at the organization’s upcoming business meetings and the State of the Industry Conference (SOTIC) in Turks and Caicos next month.
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