In order to tackle some of the challenges currently being faced by manufacturers in this country, Minister of Industry, International Business,
Commerce and Small Business Development, Donville Inniss, has suggested a multipronged approach is needed to address their concerns.

He made these comments during a recent interview with the Barbados Government Information Service. Mr. Inniss said: ???We must first be honest with ourselves in terms of what we can truly manufacture of [a high] standard in Barbados and what are the resources needed to make it successful.

???We need to ensure that there are backward and forward linkages with other stakeholders including our educational facilities, financial institutions and other training facilities as well as our marketers.???

The Minister contended that there should be more efforts to get the diaspora more involved in the promotion, marketing and sale of Barbadian-made products in the respective market places.

While admitting that adequate financing was always a big issue for manufacturers in Barbados, the Minister indicated that the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation (BIDC) had been mandated to work closely with funding agencies to identify financing programmes to address the needs of manufacturers in this country.

???We are currently looking at the Technical Assistance Programme of the BIDC to see how that can be better utilised in this area. [As well] there are issues relating to buyers of trade and protection which are also being addressed. However, I do not subscribe to a blanket policy of protection, [as] sometimes that can stifle creativity and create a false comfort in the market place,??? the Minister asserted.??

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