Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office with responsibility for??Investment, Senator Darcy Boyce, addressing the event. (C. Pitt)

A government official believes than in order for regional businesses to succeed, they must improve their competitiveness.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office, with responsibility for Energy, Immigration, Telecommunication and Investment, Senator Darcy Boyce, expressed this view while speaking at the Caribbean Export Development Centre’s launch of the 10th European Development Fund, of the Regional Private Sector Development Programme, at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre today.

Senator Boyce maintained that in order for businesses to successfully compete, they must seek to be competitive against other businesses of their kind, domestically, regionally and internationally.??

He urged businesses to seek varying approaches rather than traditional ones, when trying to break into other markets.

"Whenever you seek to improve competitiveness or productivity of a company, you have to take a deviant approach to matters, to challenge the conventional wisdom of how things are supposed to be done.?? We are only going to get small increments of productivity improvement, if we only take small approaches.

"I would wish to see the Caribbean Export Development Agency and the University of the West Indies team up to review their business programme to do a lot more work in the competitiveness of our sectors, so that we can not only earn more in foreign exchange, but also maintain our position in our region and domestic market," the Investment Minister noted.

Senator Boyce charged local businesses to use the example of the West Indian rum market to produce and market products using West Indian Sea Island cotton.??

"When I think of the Caribbean Export Development Agency I think of the illustrious story it had with West Indian rum. ??When I think of the success and the marketing of Barbadian rum and Caribbean rum, I think we could get into the effort of marketing West Indian high fashion garments made of Sea Island cotton.?? We are the only region that has Sea Island cotton … and we seem to be the only region to let a product like this vanish.?? The time has come for us to want to use the talent, of our designers, to use and sell high valued, high quality Sea Island cotton garments around the world," he remarked.

Minister Boyce stated that significant research needs to be conducted to properly introduce new and existing products domestically, regionally and internationally.


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