St. Lucia, Taiwan Team Up for Business.
THE Johnsons Centre at Rodney Bay will become a busy hive of business activity this weekend for the 8th annual Saint Lucia-Taiwan Partnership Trade Exhibition.
The exhibition is a joint collaboration between the Ministry of Commerce, Business Development, Investment and Consumer Affairs and the Embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan).
Fifty-four Saint Lucian companies will have their goods and services on show alongside five Taiwanese companies at the three-day trade exhibition. The local exhibits spread across many different areas of industry: art and craft, awnings, handcrafted soaps, creole jams and jellies, clothing, ceramics, wines, art, beauty products and technology.
The Taiwanese participants will be showcasing a variety of health foods, machinery equipment, outdoor gear and solar technologies.
The participating companies will also get the opportunity to open new avenues for trade opportunities and develop essential strategic networks for their respective businesses. With the Christmas season near, patrons can also get glimpses of potential gift items for relatives and friends.
Last year, the exhibition was held at Baywalk Shopping Mall, attracting about two dozen participating companies. At the time, plans were already being put in place to ensure that the number of participants this year would increase. In fact, the number has more than doubled.
Over the years, many participants have been able to realize positive spin-offs for their businesses. With the usual large masses that flow through the show, many exhibitors admit that even though they are not always able to attract on-the-spot buyers, immediate networking usually leads to post-exhibition sales.
For many Saint Lucians, the exhibition is usually the first time they encounter some of the businesses – Saint Lucian and Taiwanese. For others, it’s just another way to strengthen existing bonds. For example, last year’s exhibition introduced Ethelina Lansiquot’s breadfruit jam and Patrick Velinor’s latanyè wine to larger audiences.
For aspiring entrepreneurs, this just might be the opportunity where you can interact with successful businesspeople to find out how they got started, their challenges and what they have to offer to customers.
This year, first-time exhibitors Terril Nicholas and Marcella St. Omer intend to light up patrons’ eyes this year with their costume jewellery and crochet art respectively. Regulars such as Joshua George and Christine Samuel will again mesmerize with their woodwork craft and handbags respectively.
The exhibition begins tomorrow and ends on Sunday, opening from 9 a.m. and closing at 7 p.m. daily and is open to the public at no cost.