Building Up Business: Microenterprise Demand for Credit in the Caribbean

Business Development

Building Up Business: Microenterprise Demand for Credit in the Caribbean

The present study investigates the role that formal and informal savings and credit mechanisms play in the financial lives of microentrepreneurs in the Caribbean, partly as an attempt to explain the relatively low outreach of microcredit in the region to date. Informal financing mechanisms studied include friends and family loans, moneylenders (unregulated “loan sharks”), store credit, and rotating savings and credit associations (ROSCA s).

Caribbean Diasporic Entrepreneurship

This study argues that tapping into the migration, diaspora and development nexus is critical to enhance economic diversification and deepen global competitiveness in the contemporary Caribbean economy. However, activating this potential requires significant changes in practice and policy among governments, as well as, the mind-sets of businesses and immigrant communities which can benefit from this economy.

Measuring the Competitiveness of Selected CARICOM Countries – WEF

The World Economic Forum (WEF) views competitiveness as the potential of a country to grow in a sustained way over the medium to long term and thus create prosperity for its citizens. The Global Competitiveness Index (GCI), developed by Professor Xavier Sala-i-Martin of Columbia University together with the WEF, represents a powerful tool to shed light on the complex set of factors, policies, and institutions that determine the level of national productivity and therefore the diverging growth experiences of countries. Identifying the long-term drivers of economic growth becomes even more relevant in the current context of global economic downturn, in which short-term urgencies tend to dominate political debate and political agendas. In this situation, policymakers neglect the longer-term view at their peril, since economies displaying strong competitiveness fundamentals are able to better weather business cycle downturns and ensure that mechanisms enabling solid economic growth going into the future are in place.

Institutions and the Legal Framework for Business Development in the Caribbean

Research shows that long-term sustainable growth depends on the quality of a country’s institutions. Without well-functioning institutions, education and training policies are less effective and factor markets cannot function efficiently. Similarly, without well-functioning institutions, infrastructure investment, macroeconomic stability, and trade reform do not lead to competitive, growing economies. Financial systems, which are a central element in funding new investment, do not function effectively in a weak institutional environment. This paper discusses the ways in which legal, regulatory, and governance institutions affect business competitiveness in the Caribbean region through their effect on transaction costs, contracting, firm organization, and formality versus informality.

Innovation and Entrepreneurship: A Model Based on Entrepreneur Development (Spanish)

This article proposes a person-centered model for entrepreneurship, rather than one based on an idea or business plan. It analyzes the characteristics of entrepreneurship development programs worldwide and presents a representative sample of best practices. On the basis of the main findings and lessons learned, this paper defines the characteristics and components of a new model for entrepreneur development and presents recommendations as to how to deploy the model in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Innovation and Entrepreneurship: A Model Based on Entrepreneur Development (English)

This article proposes a person-centered model for entrepreneurship, rather than one based on an idea or business plan. It analyzes the characteristics of entrepreneurship development programs worldwide and presents a representative sample of best practices. On the basis of the main findings and lessons learned, this paper defines the characteristics and components of a new model for entrepreneur development and presents recommendations as to how to deploy the model in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Business Climate for Competitiveness in the Americas: Simplification of Procedures to Promote Competitiveness (Spanish)

International organizations most often recommend a virtual one stop shop such as the Single Window for Foreign Trade (Spanish acronym: VUCE). This model is undoubtedly the most successful scheme available. This paper presents the general framework for trade facilitation and shows how VUCEs have triggered a new perspective of cohesiveness as countries seek to facilitate trade and influence competitiveness indexes. In addition, it assesses the current situation in countries of the Americas that are starting to or have already taken the first steps in developing a VUCE, such as Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico, and Chile, and discusses the conditions required to implement a VUCE with the understanding that there is more than one possible model of implementation and every government must choose one that is suitable to its own institutional structure and technological progress. This paper was presented at the Fifth Americas Competiveness Forum for the Inter-American Development Bank and Compete Caribbean Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, October 5-7, 2011.

Business Climate for Competitiveness in the Americas: Simplification of Procedures to Promote Competitiveness (English)

International organizations most often recommend a virtual one stop shop such as the Single Window for Foreign Trade (Spanish acronym: VUCE). This model is undoubtedly the most successful scheme available. This paper presents the general framework for trade facilitation and shows how VUCEs have triggered a new perspective of cohesiveness as countries seek to facilitate trade and influence competitiveness indexes. In addition, it assesses the current situation in countries of the Americas that are starting to or have already taken the first steps in developing a VUCE, such as Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico, and Chile, and discusses the conditions required to implement a VUCE with the understanding that there is more than one possible model of implementation and every government must choose one that is suitable to its own institutional structure and technological progress. This paper was presented at the Fifth Americas Competiveness Forum for the Inter-American Development Bank and Compete Caribbean Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, October 5-7, 2011.

Logistics as a Driver for Competitiveness in Latin America and the Caribbean (Spanish)

Logistics is becoming a critical element of competitiveness and economic performance both in itself and within the context of increasing globalization. Most Latin American and Caribbean countries are focusing on export-led growth strategies. For such strategies to succeed, a key component is an effective and efficient logistics framework that addresses the full spectrum-upstream, midstream, and downstream-of the value and production chain. This report illustrates the relevance and impact of logistics for competitiveness in the region and provides a framework, priorities, interventions, and solutions to address the issues. This paper was presented at the Fifth Americas Competiveness Forum for the Inter-American Development Bank and Compete Caribbean Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, October 5-7, 2011.

Logistics as a Driver for Competitiveness in Latin America and the Caribbean (English)

Logistics is becoming a critical element of competitiveness and economic performance both in itself and within the context of increasing globalization. Most Latin American and Caribbean countries are focusing on export-led growth strategies. For such strategies to succeed, a key component is an effective and efficient logistics framework that addresses the full spectrum-upstream, midstream, and downstream-of the value and production chain. This report illustrates the relevance and impact of logistics for competitiveness in the region and provides a framework, priorities, interventions, and solutions to address the issues. This paper was presented at the Fifth Americas Competiveness Forum for the Inter-American Development Bank and Compete Caribbean Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, October 5-7, 2011.