MINISTER in the Office of the Prime Minister with Responsibility for Commerce, Industry, Investment, Enterprise Development and Consumer Affairs, Bradley Felix, says Saint Lucia’s manufacturing sector has improved. He is also calling for increased production due to demand.
In his address, presented as part of the Debate on Appropriations, Minister Felix referred to the numerous initiatives launched by the Trade Export Promotion Agency (TEPA) that have positively impacted the suppliers of goods and services alike. One of the most significant over the last year to garner results was the Speciality Expo.
“The agency charged with expanding Saint Lucia’s exports, TEPA, hosted in March last year the first-ever specialty expo under the theme ‘A Unique Buying Experience’ at the Daren Sammy National Cricket Stadium and brought together over 30 buyers from North America, the UK, English and French speaking Caribbean, while over 155 products, services and companies participated in the expo,” the minister said.
“What was on display included apparel, footwear, IT, agribusiness, engineering food and beverage, furniture and a whole host of products and services,” he said.
The Minister went on to add that an upswing in competitiveness on many levels across many businesses and services is apparent.
“As a result of the expo, local businesses were able to exhibit their products and services to a range of local, regional and international buyers.
“Today many companies have received orders and production has increased. New alliances have been formed between local firms and regional and international firms, which will lead to the introduction of new technology in the production process thereby improving the competitiveness of these local enterprises.
“It is only in increasing the levels of competitiveness of these local businesses that we are able to survive in this very hostile place.”
He concluded, “I would like to commend TEPA for taking the lead in this effort.”