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Minister of Economic Affairs and Empowerment, Innovation, Trade, Industry and Commerce, Dr. David Estwick.

If everything goes according to plan, a database with a listing of 11 375 small businesses operating across Barbados will be rolled out by Government at month-end.

Minister of Economic Affairs and Empowerment, Innovation, Trade, Industry and Commerce, Dr. David Estwick, said such a facility would allow technocrats to have unlimited access to the entrepreneurs at the click of a mouse. It also represents stepped-up efforts by Government to move the sector to world class standards.

The Minister was speaking during the official launch of the Pioneers of Prosperity Caribbean Awards at Hilton Barbados, Needhams Point, St. Michael. The programme is sponsored by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the John Templeton Foundation in conjunction with other local strategic partners.

Dr. Estwick said the statistical information compiled would assist in detecting any weaknesses in the sector and exploiting opportunities for innovation.

“It is expected that this database will allow us to generate statistical data on the sector and facilitate networks across Barbados as one would now have a better appreciation of supply chains. These supply chains, would allow us to see where the opportunities exist, and exploit them. It would allow us to deal with our weaknesses and ultimately, spur on innovation and competitiveness,” he added.

Dr. Estwick also revealed Government’s plans to track the impact of trade liberalisation on the small business sector.

From this exercise, the Economic Affairs Minister said the information collected would be used to upgrade statistical information and to implement the requisite policies and programmes to improve the operations of the sector.

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