Representatives from almost every borrowing member country of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) will be participating in a stakeholders’ forum to come up with better working strategies, over the next three days.
The event started today at the Ramada, Princess Hotel, East Bank Demerara. In an overview of what the event will entail, Kenneth Harvey, CTCS Network Coordinator, said over the years, the role of the CDB and the CTCS has changed, hence the need for new strategies. Harvey pointed out that in the past CTCS was able to cater, to the needs of a few countries.
However, with the CTCS now having a total of 19 countries there arises the need for new strategies to better cater for the needs of individual countries.
“We always do our best if it means resource persons, training and other support . That worked well when we were servicing a few countries, but we now have 19 borrowing members our latest being Suriname, we needed more staffing, the bank is evolving and has encouraged us to deal with other issues, core to the Bank’s agenda.”
Harvey said it is to this end that CTCS was forced to come up with a different approach, and that is to deal with the member countries in a strategic way.
“At the beginning of each year the lead Cooperating Institution in each country will assemble its people and identify some core activities that they can do under the CTCS programme in that given year or in a few years that will really impact on MSME in their respective countries.”
This Harvey said, will shorten planning time, and hasten implementation time for projects.
“So when we sit and prepare a country paper up to the tune of US$150,000, we can address all the issues in one go, that way once the document has been approved we can implement.”
Harvey however, urged the participants to be cognisant of the fact that the CDB does its work thoroughly and carefully scrutinises each project that is presented to it.
“So we are saying let’s go with that approach, in going towards that we see this is a golden opportunity to engage the local cooperating institution to be more involved in identifying and developing the activities in tune with what is the strategic focus of the government of the day for MSME development.”
More importantly, Harvey said is to incorporate into their plans, what Governments want the MSME to contribute to their national economy.
“You the locals will be called upon to be part and parcel of the preparation process, you will be required to identify what areas in the MSME sector requires urgent and significant attention and what would make tangible contribution to the development of the country.”
The CTCS Network is operated by the Private Sector Development Division of the CDB in cooperation with Regional and National Institutions, laboratories, industrial enterprises and private consultants.
The CTCS Network also helps to solve planning and production problems quickly by providing Caribbean expertise at an affordable cost.
The CTCS Network has been assisting users in funding solutions to practical problems encountered in Production enterprises, as well as in the Hotel Industry.
Assistance is also provided for project implementation, training, computerization and in the development of business, technical and marketing plans.
Countries, which are a part of the CTCS Network, include, Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Cayman Islands, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Island.