How can blockchain help to increase access to finance for Caribbean SMEs?
Block-chain has the potential to combine dimensions of digital identity like never before. Not only aggregating
alternative information, block-chain maximizes frictionless transactions, security, and individual autonomy.
Jamaica Intellectual Property Asset Workshop 2018
Get Up, Stand Up for Your Rights: Intellectual Property (IP) Rights. How IPRs Can Help Our Creators Access the Finance They Need to Innovate and Grow.
Bowie, James Brown, Motown, the Isley Brothers – these are all artists who were able to securitize their IP to varying degrees of success but is this the right strategy for the Caribbean? In this piece we explore how we can support our creators in using their IPRs to access the finance they need to innovate and grow.
RESULTS OF CALL – CHALLENGES FOR WOMEN-OWNED FIRMS IN THE CARIBBEAN RESULTS
Our most sincere thanks to all applicants who showed an unparalleled level of dedication in participating in the call to address gender issues in the Caribbean.
Call for Cluster Proposals – Results
In November 2017, Compete Caribbean closed a competition for clusters projects across the region, which received 91 applications. Following a thorough, systematic and difficult evaluation process, the following eight finalists have been invited to pitch their project before an independent panel of judges on Friday, January 19th, 2018 from 8:30 am.
Call for Cluster for Proposals FAQs
1. What does the call for cluster proposal include:
1. The guidelines on the application process, timeline, eligibility, etc.
2. The application form – which must be submitted online via www.competecaribbean.org
3. The cluster datasheet to facilitate the collection of information about the project and organisations involved.
2. How can I get updates on the timeline and deadlines?
Make sure to sign-up to the newsletter and visit www.competecaribbean.org often for any updates on the timeline below.
3. What entities are eligible?
The following organizations are eligible to receive support from Compete Caribbean: private firms, both indigenous enterprises and international firms operating in the Caribbean, consortia led by private firms, including Universities, NGOs and community-based organisations. The entities that participate in a cluster project can be from one or multiple nations.
4. What are the eligibility criteria?
The eligibility criteria are as follows:
(i) Applicants must be private formally registered companies or business chambers or associations.
(ii) They must be located in the territory of the countries of the Caribbean
(iii) They must have been operating during the past year (12 months).
(iv) They may not have enforceable tax or benefits debt.
(v) The applicant must present documentation accrediting its legal status and validity.
(vi) The applicant must formally apply to the Program using the procedures and forms specified by the latter.
(vii) The applicant must present all required documentation.
(viii) They must submit a written letter expressing their commitment to finance the business contribution and accept the financial conditions of the contributions.
(ix) They must be willing to draft the contracts required by the Program.
(x) They must be willing to provide all information required by the Program for its monitoring activities and the close of projects as well as the evaluation of results and impact and audits that are carried out by the Program administration or parties assigned to said task.
(xi) Any additional non-refundable support to be received by the partners in the project must have been stated prior to the signing of an agreement with CC and agreed as a part of the CCIP.
5. What can and cannot be funded through the program?
The following activities can be financed by the Program:
(i) Organizational and/or institutionalization of clusters, including:
– Coordinating their formation
– Legal advice regarding the creation of the alliance
– The process of hiring an alliance manager
(ii) Expenses associated with the operation of a management unit for the cluster:
– Office rental
– Purchase of basic equipment (furniture, computers, telephony, etc.)
– Basic services (water, telephone, light, electricity, mail, etc.)
– Staff travel expenses
(iii) Specialized consultancies, advising services and studies
(iv) Technical assistance and training in areas such as:
– Process and product development
– Improvement of quality and design of products and services
– Improvement in commercial, financial, environmental and strategic management
– Assessment and implementation of quality systems
– Access to markets and market intelligence, including attending international fairs and participation in international missions
(v) Attending fairs, expos, workshops and fora
(vi) Legal expenses associated with the project
(vii) Shipping and importing of samples
(viii) Acquisition of books and specialized journals
(ix) Generation of knowledge
The following activities may not be financed through the Program:
(i) Payment of companies’ debts and taxes
(ii) Operating expenses
(iii) Working capital for the operation of the companies
(iv) Activities that the applicant regularly implements with its providers.
Additionally, the CCPF does not grant funding for projects or companies involved in the production, trade or use of products, substances or activities set forth in the list below:
1. Those that are illegal according to the laws and regulations of the host country, or pursuant to international conventions and treaties ratified by this
2. Weapons and ammunition
3. Tobacco & Alcohol
4. Gambling, casinos and equivalent companies
5. Animals and wild plants or products derived from them are regulated in accordance with the convention on international trade in endangered species of wild flora and fauna (cites)
6. Radioactive materials
7. Not caked asbestos fibres
8. Projects or forestry operations that are not consistent with the environmental policy and observance of safeguards of the bank (document gn-2208-20)
9. Compounds of bifenilopoliclorado (pcbs)
10. Pharmaceuticals products subject to phase-out or international ban
11. Pesticides and herbicides subject to phase-out or international ban
12. Ozone-depleting substances subject to phasing out or international ban
13. Fishing in the maritime environment with drag nets exceeding 2.5 km in length.
14. Transboundary movements of waste and waste products except non-toxic waste intended for recycling
15. Persistent organic pollutants
16. Breach of the fundamental principles of workers and rights at work
6. What is the timeline?
5 Sept. 2017Announcement – Call for cluster proposals
8 Sept. 2017Email email@example.com to express interest in the Q&A session and receive the link/calling instructions
13 Sept. 2017 11am-noonQuestions and Answers (Q&A) session on the application and selection process.
15 Sept. 2017Email firstname.lastname@example.org to express interest in receiving constructive feedback on your application and receive the email of the independent consultant.
Note: The purpose is to increase the quality of proposals received. This process will not affect the competitive process for selecting the projects to be financed.
2-20 Oct. 2017One-on-one feedback process between the consultant(s) and the clusters applying.
31 Oct. before midnightProject Concept Note (PCN) of maximum 5-pages submitted online with the information required, along with four appendices:
1. Cluster Project Details (objectives and activities)
2. Cluster member details
3. Signed Letter of commitment
4. Evidence of legal status of the lead institution
Optional information can include:
– A 5-minute video pitch for your project with the most important details about the product or process, its potential for export and it impact on your country.
– A Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis or other relevant information.
15 Nov. 2017Announcement of short-listed projects. Additional information may be requested as part of the due diligence process.
20-30 Nov. (TBD)Investment Panel. Live presentation before a panel of independent and diverse judges expert in private sector or economic development.
Dec. 2017Announcement of selected projects for funding, subject to compliant delivery of the Cluster Capacity Improvement Plan, partnership agreement, counterpart financing, etc.
Jan. 2018Contracting agreement.
Feb-April 2018Development of the Cluster Capacity Improvement Plan (CCIP) with the support of a dedicated consultant.
April – …Implementation
7. What is an anchor firm of a lead institution?
Eligible anchor organisations include cluster management offices, destination management offices, industry associations, trade and investment authorities; regional association organisations; small business development centers; NGOs and universities.
8. I am a service based entity (tourism, music, creative industries, etc), would I qualify for support?
Yes. According to the WTO’s General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), the modes of supply for international services include the below four modes:
(1) Cross-border supply: services flows from the territory of one country into the territory of another country (i.e. banking, architectural services transmitted by ICT or mail; charges for the use of intellectual property)
(2) Consumption abroad: refers to situations where a service consumer (i.e. tourist or patient) moves into another country’s territory to obtain a service
(3) Commercial presence: a service supplier of one country establishes territorial presence in another country to provide a service
(4) Presence of Natural Persons: persons of one country entering the territory of another country to supply a service (i.e. accountants, doctors, teachers, musicians performing live in another country, etc.)
9. What is the value of the grant being offered by the Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility (CCPF)?
The maximum amount funded by CCPF is USD$400,000. 20% (minimum) of the total budget for the Cluster Capacity Improvement Plan (CCIP) must be financed by the firms in the cluster – half of which can be provided in kind. For example:
Total CCIP budget:USD$500,000
Amount funded by CCPF:USD$400,000
Cash contributed by the cluster:USD$50,000
Estimated value of contribution by the cluster in kind (eg: staff time, vehicle, etc.):USD$50,000
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Clusters
1. What is a Cluster?
IDB defines a cluster as “A productive agglomeration aiming at exploiting local linkages to generate and strengthen competitive advantages” (Pietrobelli and Stevenson 2011).
Michael Porter defines a cluster as a “A geographically proximate group of interconnected companies and associated institutions in a particular field, linked by commonalities and complementarities” (Porter 1998).
The image below illustrates the different stakeholders involved in an Agri-business cluster.
2. What is a Cluster Initiative or Project?
Cluster initiatives foster collaboration and sophistication of diverse stakeholders in a value chain. They also support organisations such as regulatory bodies, quality standards, academic and training institutions, research and testing centres, economic development organisations, etc.
According to the World Bank, “A cluster initiative offers a comprehensive assessment of a cluster’s markets, products, linkages, externalities, and synergies to help identify regulatory and business constraints, tap new and wider market opportunities, and develop sound business strategies to tackle its main competitors. Strategic initiatives vary by country and cluster, but often focus on improving market Information, workforce development, supply chain improvements, quality standards, branding, forward integration, and process improvements.”
3. What is the purpose of a Cluster initiative?
The main purpose of cluster project is to drive PRODUCTIVITY and INNOVATION over time, which are driven by a great mix of cooperation and competition at the micro level. More specifically, the objectives tend to focus on:
- Joint marketing and regional/national co-branding to access larger markets and more value per customer
- Solving coordination problems
- Establishing relationships with government and partners
- Training – co-investing in human capital
- Research and Development (R&D)
4. What are the benefits of cluster initiatives?
The value of clustering for the Caribbean’s small and medium private sector organisations lies in the opportunity to become more competitive through cost savings, cost sharing, co-branding and innovation. The combined efforts of networking and strategic alliances can lead to a stronger international profile.
Cluster initiatives contribute to comprehensive national competitiveness efforts that include policy reform, trade capacity building, a private-public dialogue, regional economic development, workforce development, etc.
Ultimately, business clusters generate employment and revenues. Clustering is proven to help upgrade the sophistication of diverse stakeholders involved in a cluster such as suppliers, wholesalers, regulatory bodies, government/NGOs, as well as university and training institutions. Overtime, collaborative approaches in business development, applied research, ICT, and R&D foster the relationship between the alignment of the supply with the needs of the private sector, which in turn drives innovation and productivity at the country level.
Other benefits include:
- The multiplication of economic growth through spillovers: the diverse and disperse activities in the value chain used to reduce risk, access cheaper inputs, or better serve particular regional markets.
- Enables countries to shift policies from cost cutting (tax incentives / subsidies) to promoting growth and innovation.
A. FOR PRIVATE SECTOR FIRMS
- Access to specialized human resources and suppliers,
- Improve quality and productivity
- Workforce development
- Knowledge spillovers as a result of collaboration and networking with diverse stakeholders
- Innovative products/services or processes (better ways of doing same or different things)
- Costs reduction and operational efficiency
- Risks mitigation
- Performance improvement due to international or competitive pressures
- Supply chain improvements/ Reduction or elimination of bottle-necks in the eco-system
- Improvement of market information and access to larger markets
- Branding and market penetration (new or diversification)
- Access to research & development (R&D)
“Through dialogues at the cluster level, new partnerships can be forged between cluster leaders and various public sector organizations (e.g., organizations working on industrial development, infrastructure development, research, innovation and training, etc.) that can help expedite policy reforms. Better coordination between the public and private sectors on addressing productivity bottlenecks.”
B. FOR GOVERNMENT AND DEVELOPMENT AGENCIES
- Improve competitiveness on the global market
- Enable countries to shift policies from cost cutting (tax incentives / subsidies) to promoting growth and innovation
- Increased exports (more foreign exchange obtained domestically from tourists/expats or abroad)
- Sustained market-oriented reforms
- Multiply economic growth beyond the cluster through its linkages, externalities, and synergies
- Higher value/quality standards adopted
- More effective policy and regulatory environment
- Faster technology adoption
- More investment in research & development from the private firms
- Innovation and competitiveness
“A cluster-based approach is a realistic way to identify the policy and institutional impediments to competitiveness and can be an effective vehicle for catalyzing reform. The growth of a cluster is often the catalyst for complementary development in areas such as the provision of specialized infrastructure and additions to the country’s technology and knowledge base. It also may result in the foundation and expansion of training and science institutions, and agencies for export promotion, setting standards and regulations, etc.”
C. FOR CITIZENS
- Better coordination enables the identification of value-added services leading to the creation of more and better jobs
- Obtain better understanding of the economic reform agenda
- Access to educational and training programs that are more aligned with market demand
- Greater quality of products and services available
5. What are the key success factors for effective clustering?
Based on to a survey of 500 clusters worldwide described in the The Cluster Initiative Greenbook, some trends can be identified:
- It is of vital importance that stakeholders reach a consensus on top priorities for the cluster to grow, based on a SWOT analysis
- Cluster Initiatives (CIs) can be initiated and funded by the government, industry or both
- CIs are selected through a competition process perform significantly better on the international level
- CIs have 10 active members or more
- The members are self-selected (not picked by government)
- CIs limited to domestic companies tend to perform worse than those not limited
- CIs have a dedicated facilitator and budget funded by cluster members
- Companies remain the decision makers and most influential parties, even if the CI is funded or facilitated by the government/NGOs
- Adequate time and effort must be allocated to building a framework of shared ideas about why the CI is beneficial and how it operates
- Failure is strongly related to a lack of consensus, highlighting the importance of the credibility and skills of the facilitator
- CIs must have a M&E system with performance indicators to track both progress and impact of activities over time
The most successful clusters are important in terms of job creation or foreign exchange and in time become a priority for economic development at the national (and almost always regional) level.
6. Where can I get more information on clusters and cluster initiatives?
- Cluster for competitiveness – A Practical Guide & Policy Implications for Developing Cluster Initiatives, World Bank Group, 2009
Click here for Practical guide, World Bank
- The Cluster Initiative Greenbook, Solvell, Lindqvist, Ketels, 2003
Click here for Cluster Initiative Greenbook
- Clusters in the Caribbean, IDB, 2017
Click here for Clusters in the Caribbean
- Cluster Best Practices for the Caribbean, IDB, 2010
Click here for Cluster Best Practices in the Caribbean
- Cluster Development Programs in Latin America and the Caribbean: Lessons from the Experience of the IDB. 2011
Click here for Lessons learned about cluster initiatives in LAC
7. What are some examples of cluster initiatives in the region?
Examples of successful export oriented clusters that benefited from Compete Caribbean support in 2016:
8. Which types of organisations are involved in a cluster?
A cluster initiative usually starts as a network of firms and support organizations in a territory with a common goal. In addition to the firms, other stakeholders may include:
- academic and training institutions
- institutions involved in research and testing
- regulatory bodies
- institutions that develop or monitor quality standards
- economic development agencies and NGOs
- investment promotion agencies
- sector associations
9. What are the three types of clusters?
- See application form for anwers
Building Institutional Capacity for Strengthening Business Clusters; Call for Applications Extended to September 15th, 2017
If your mandate is to foster the productivity and growth of micro, small, or medium enterprises (MSMEs), you may be interested in supporting business clusters. The purpose of clustering initiatives is to encourage collaborative actions to improve the competitiveness of a sector or industry.
- Antigua & Barbuda;
- St. Kitts & Nevis;
- St. Lucia;
- St. Vincent & the Grenadines.
Call for Cluster Projects (September 4, 2017)
Call for Cluster Projects
September 4, 2017
This call for proposals aims to fund cluster initiatives that can help Caribbean firms to grow, generate employment and export to new markets.
Clusters are defined as 3 or more private sector firms collaborating to produce and sell a stream of new or better products/services at competitive costs on the regional or international market.
Compete Caribbean will grant selected cluster project(s) 80% of the total budget for the project proposed by the cluster, to a maximum of USD$400,000. The cluster must contribute a counterpart of 20% (minimum) of the total project cost, half of which can be provided in-kind. Professional consultants will also be available to support the project development process. See below and the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for more details.
Deadline for submitting a Project Concept Note (PCN): October 31, 2017.
Make sure to sign up to the Compete Caribbean Newsletter for updates on resources available, deadlines, and future calls.
Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility
The Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility (CCPF) provides technical assistance in 13 Caribbean countries through a multi-donor fund created by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID) and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).
CCPF aims to contribute to economic growth in the Caribbean region by focusing on private sector development. Pillar 1 of the CCPF is dedicated to Productivity and Innovation and it does this by strengthening private sector organisations to increase production and employment, boost innovation, improve competence and know-how, achieve higher exports and improve quality and productivity overall. Pillar 1 seeks to achieve this mandate through the implementation of four instruments:
- Direct Support to Clusters
- Technology Extension Services
- Entrepreneurship Support Programs; and
- Innovation Fund
This call for project proposals is directly associated with CCPF’s Clustering instrument.
Examples of previously funded clusters may be found here:
The value of clustering for the Caribbean’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs) lies in its opportunity to collectively service customers, attract new clients or solve production problems, in ways that are not possible for businesses operating independently. More specifically, the firms actively involved in a cluster initiative benefit from access to larger markets, business development/branding, cost sharing/saving, workforce development, higher and more uniform quality standards, supply chain or process improvements, better government support, etc.
Grant funds will cover consultancy services and minor goods related to improving the functioning of a cluster. Grants will be allocated on a competitive basis following an evaluation by an independent Investment Panel.
This call opens on September 5th, 2017 and closes on October 31st, 2017.
Please join us by webinar on September 13 at 11:00 am for a regional Question and Answer session. This session is intended to answer questions about the application and selection process.
Webinar invitations will be sent to interested parties. Please email email@example.com on or before September 8, 2017 to receive the webinar link and dial in numbers.
Between October 2nd and 20th, the CCPF will provide interested organisations with an opportunity to receive feedback on the strength of the proposal before final submission. Institutions that want to access this opportunity will must indicate interest by September 15 via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note that the consultant(s) providing feedback will be independents whose services will not impact on the competitive process for selecting the projects to be financed.
Within two (2) weeks after the final submission deadline, all applications will be reviewed for eligibility and evaluated by Compete Caribbean’s internal panel.
Shortlisted applications will be submitted to an independent Investment Panel and a result will be communicated in December 2017.
Implementation of selected projects is expected to begin in early 2018. Project execution will be planned for a period up to 24 months.
The call is eligible in the following countries only:
- Antigua & Barbuda
- The Bahamas
- Saint Kitts & Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent & the Grenadines
- Trinidad & Tobago
The application must be submitted by a formally registered private entity (lead institution) on behalf of the cluster network. Eligible organisations include: private sector firms, business support organisations (BSOs), industry associations, trade and investment authorities; regional association organisations; small business development centers; NGOs, universities, etc.
Eligible applications will be shortlisted based on their potential impact on the social and economic indicators most important for the Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility. These include:
- Job creation in the short and long term;
- Exports (foreign exchange through sales within or outside the country);
- Contribution to gender equality;
- Contribution to climate change adaptation or mitigation;
- Inclusive development / support to vulnerable groups;
- The likelihood of sustaining the results achieved once the CCPF project ends.
Tip: The clusters must also clearly define their interest in maintaining co-operation post-project. Applicants may wish to outline future cooperation activities that ensure sustainability for up to 5 years post-project.
How to Apply
The application consists of:
- One project concept note (annexed below and may also be available on CCPF website)
- Appendix 1: Cluster Project Details (objectives and activities)
- Appendix 2: Cluster member details
- Appendix 3: Signed Letter of commitment
- Appendix 4: Evidence of legal status of the lead institution
- A 5-minute video pitch for your project. In it, you’ll cover the most important details about the product or process, its potential for export and it impact on your country.
- Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis or other relevant information.
Applications must be submitted electronically via the CCPF website email@example.com – detailed instructions to follow. Applicants will be informed about the outcome of their application via the email address provided.
Once a project has been shortlisted, the lead institution representing the cluster will need to obtain a power of attorney from the other cluster members enabling it to sign a contract with IDB on their behalf.
Winning clusters will be required to enter into a legal agreement with the IDB for the project prior to project execution. As such, due diligence will be conducted. A cluster will be excluded from participating in the call for proposals procedure if it is in any of the following situations:
- Bankrupt, subject to insolvency or winding-up procedures, where its assets are being administered by a liquidator or by a court, where it is in an arrangement with creditors, where its business activities are suspended, or where it is in any analogous situation arising from a similar procedure provided for under national laws or regulations.
- It has been established by a final judgment or a final administrative decision that the entity is in breach of its obligations relating to the payment of taxes or social security contributions in accordance with the law of the country in which it is established, with those of the country in which the contracting authority is located or those of the country of the performance of the agreement;
- It has been established by a final judgment that the entity is guilty of any of the following: (i) fraud, (ii) corruption, (iii) participation in a criminal organisation,
- Terrorist-related offences or offences linked to terrorist activities.
- Child labour or other forms of trafficking in human beings.
Activities not Eligible for Funding
The CCPF does not grant funding for projects or companies involved in the production, trade or use of products, substances or activities set forth in the list below:
- Those that are illegal according to the laws and regulations of the host country, or pursuant to international conventions and treaties ratified by this.
- Weapons and ammunition.
- Gambling, casinos and equivalent companies.ii
- Animals and wild plants or products derived from them are regulated in accordance with the convention on international trade in endangered species of wild flora and fauna (cites).iii
- Radioactive materials.iv
- Not caked asbestos fibres.v
- Projects or forestry operations that are not consistent with the environmental policy and observance of safeguards of the bank (document gn-2208-20).
- Compounds of bifenilopoliclorado (pcbs).
- Pharmaceuticals products subject to phase-out or international ban.vi
- Pesticides and herbicides subject to phase-out or international ban.vii
- Ozone-depleting substances subject to phasing out international.viii
- Fishing in the maritime environment with drag nets exceeding 2.5 km in length.
- Transboundary movements of waste and waste productsix except non-toxic waste intended for recycling.
- Persistent organic pollutants.x
- Breach of the fundamental principles of workers and rights at work.xi
- i. Does not apply to sponsors (sponsors) are not substantially involved in these activities. “Not substantially involved” means that the activity is ancillary to the main activities of the sponsor’s operations.
- ii. Not apply to sponsors (sponsors) are not substantially involved in these activities. “Not substantially involved” means that the activity is ancillary to the main activities of the sponsor of operations.
- iii.See http://www.cites.org.
- iv. Does not apply to the purchase of medical equipment, quality control equipment (metering) and other equipment that can prove that the radioactive source is insignificant and/or is properly covered.
- v. Does not apply to the purchase and use of sheets of cement asbestos caked in which the asbestos content < 20%.
- vi. Pharmaceutical products subject to phasing out or banning in United Nations, Banned Products: Consolidated List of Products Whose Consumption and/or Sale Have Been Banned, Withdrawn, Severely Restricted or not Approved by Governments (latest version 2008). http://www.who.int/medicines/areas/quality_safety/safety_efficacy/who_emp_qsm2008.3.pdf.
- vii. Pesticides and herbicides subject to phase-out or international ban.
- viii. Ozone-depleting substances are chemicals that react with stratospheric ozone and deplete it, giving as a result the widely spread “ozone holes”. The Montreal Protocol lists these substances and their planned reduction and phase-out dates. The chemicals regulated by the referred Protocol include aerosols, refrigerants, fire extinguishing blowers for foams, solvents and agents. (http://ozone.unep.org/Publications/6ii_publications%20handbooks.shtml).The fundamental principles and rights at work means: i) freedom of Association and the freedom of Association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining; (ii) the prohibition of all forms of forced or compulsory labour; (iii) the prohibition of child labour, including, without limitation, which it the prohibition that persons under 18 years of age working in hazardous conditions (including construction), performing night work and are declared suitable to work on the basis of a medical examination; and (iv) the Elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation, in which discrimination is defined as any difference, exclusion or preference based on race, color, sex, religion, political opinion or national or social origin. (Organization International Labour, http://www.ilo.org)).
- ix. Defined by the Basel Convention (http://www.basel.int).
- x.Defined by the International Convention on reduction and elimination of polluting organic persistent (September 1999) that currently includes the pesticides aldrin, chlordane, dieldrin, endrin, heptachlor, mirex and toxaphene, as well as the chemical chlorobenzenes for industrial use (http://chm.pops.int/).
- xi. (Principles and fundamental rights at work means: i) the freedom of Association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining; (ii) the prohibition of all forms of forced or compulsory labour; (iii) the prohibition of child labour, including, without limitation, the prohibition of persons under 18 years of age work in hazardous conditions (including construction), performing night work, are declared fit for work on the basis of a medical examination; and (iv) the Elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation, in which discrimination is defined as any difference, exclusion or preference based on race, color, sex, religion, political opinion or national or social origin. (Organization International Labour, http://www.ilo.org).
Regional Policy Dialogue (Jamaica) – Presentations (August 23-24, 2017)
The low level of innovation in the Caribbean is a constraint to the region’s economic growth, and technological change represents a key factor in increasing productivity. One alternative available to address this key constraint is technological extension policies. Technological extension policies can help increase productivity and competitiveness by facilitating the adoption of technology by enterprises, particularly SMEs.
Technology extension policies help companies not to develop new technologies but rather to diffuse and encourage the adoption of already existing technology, thus contributing to increase the capacity of targeted firms to develop new products or improve their processes. Technology extension services usually include an assessment of the firm’s operation, followed by an improvement plan and assistance in its implementation.
These services can include benchmarking companies in their industries at national and international levels, providing information on opportunities for improvement by incorporating existing technologies, best practices, technical assistance and consulting human resource development, strategic management, etc. Implementing these types of policies requires supporting institutions with leadership and coordination skills, and with the ability to design instruments designed according to business needs, human capital for the execution of projects and capabilities to deliver technology services.
Click the links below for presentations from Day 1:
- Technology Extension Concepts and Models (presentation by Jan Youtie)
- Technological Extension Services (TES) in the Caribbean (presentation by Roberto De Groote)
For more information, read the Full Analysis (by Roberto De Groote).
- Exploring Firm-Level Innovation and Productivity in Developing Countries – The Perspective of Caribbean Small States
- The New Imperative of Innovation
Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility (CCPF), in collaboration with JAMPRO, hosted the second day of the Regional Policy Dialogue entitled, “A Digital Agenda for Enterprises in the Caribbean, held at the Jamaica Pegasus on August 24, 2017, from 9am to 12 noon.
This event involved dialogue on promoting a digital economy to promote private sector development in the Caribbean and focused on the ways that the digital revolution can enhance regional economic growth.
Click the links below for presentations from Day 2:
- Digital Transformation of Firms in LAC – The Role of Public Policy (presentation by Claudia Suaznabar)
- The Orange Economy in Latin American & Caribbean Countries – Public Policies for a Creative Region (presentation by Matteo Grazzi)
- Blockchain in the Caribbean Music Industry – Helping Caribbean Musicians Monetize their Talent (presentation by Ignacio De Leon IFD/CTI)
- Alternative Finance in the Americas (presentation by Omar Villacorta)
Jamaican Ornamental Fish Project Building Bridges
The Jamaica Urban Ornamental Fish Cluster funded by Compete Caribbean consists of approximately 170 relatively small, mostly home-based aquaculture farms located primarily in urban communities in Kingston, St. Andrew, St. Catherine and Clarendon.
It is led by The Competitiveness Company (TCC), a not-for-profit social enterprise based in Kingston that has been its main driver, marketer and advocate over at least the past five years. Objective: To promote the Jamaica Ornamental fish Cluster’s ability to efficiently deliver quality ornamental aquatic products to international buyers, at competitive market prices.
Through technical assistance from Compete Caribbean, the TCC was able to achieve:
- Exported approximately 25,000 fish, including to buyers in a new market (Canada);
- Entire value chain has completed training on standards, fish health and nutrition by globally recognized experts in the field;
- Mortality rate of export fish has declined significantly;
- Data collection and management system is now in use, with field staff having been trained in the use of the system and the tablets;
- Completed design of the export (nexus) facility
Take a trip to Jamaica and the world of the ornamental fish farmer . . .
Compete Caribbean is a private sector development program that provides technical assistance grants and investment funding to support productive development policies, business climate reforms, clustering initiatives and Small and Medium Size Enterprise (SME) development activities in the Caribbean region. The program, jointly funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Canada, and the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), supports projects in 15 Caribbean countries. Projects in the OECS countries are implemented in partnership with the Caribbean Development Bank.