May 8, 2018:- Seven (7) international development partners were engaged in a series of meetings with senior officials of the Ministry of Trade and Industry during its Inaugural Aid for Trade Donor Week from May 1st to 4th 2018. As the Ministry moves to expand international relations support and advance the implementation of the National Aid for Trade Strategy launched in April 2017, presentations were made by several Ministries, State Agencies and the Private Sector Organisations to Development Partners.  Some twenty four (24) projects to be implemented within the next fiscal year requiring donor assistance were presented. The Aid for Trade Strategy presents a coherent framework of trade priorities and related projects aimed at addressing the challenges faced in expanding trade.

Projects presented to the donors are aligned with the three (3) development pillars under the National Aid for Trade Strategy – Export Diversification, Competitiveness and Trade Facilitation. Some of the projects will directly contribute to the implementation of the National Quality Policy, the Trade Facilitation Agreement, the CARIFORUM – EU Economic Partnership Agreement and the National Strategic Plans for Film, Fashion and Music. Other projects focused on strengthening the manufacturing sector, the Fair Trading Commission, the Intellectual Property Office and Services Data Collection.

Senator the Honourable Paula Gopee-Scoon, Minister of Trade and Industry, in addressing the development partners stated that these meetings provided an excellent opportunity to strengthen the government’s relationship and engage in dialogue with development partners.

The development agencies included the International Trade Center (ITC), GIZ, United Nations Economic Commission Latin America and the Caribbean (UNECLAC), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Delegation to the European Union, High Commission of Canada, Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). It is expected that meetings with other development organisations will occur and continued dialogue and engagement will follow to advance the implementation of the projects identified for international assistance.