Beltraide aims at tackling the problem of poverty by promoting business growth. Beltraide in collaboration with the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) held a workshop to sensitize potential exporters as to the requirements of the European Union market. Dr. Leroy Almendarez, Executive Director of Beltraide, told the media that when our export expands it can create more employment.
Dr. Leroy Almendarez – Executive Director of Beltraide: “And here we are looking at goods and services but we must understand what are the requirements for us to penetrate that market and so it’s important to understand the challenges of what are the things that you must comply with in terms of goods and services. It’s not only products but also services from musicians to waitresses you know it can look at whatever service you may be able to provide in understanding because to get into the open market also requires travel and there is something called an Sheng Yen Visa which you will have to acquire. But you must qualify in order to be granted that Visa to be an accessor of the open market. I would like to see many more products, goods and services penetrating in the European market but again it’s important to say this, there is global access when it comes to markets, the question is what are export ready and that is what Export Belize would look at. What are those products that are shovel ready, export ready, you know and then you coach them if you will so that they can go through all those final stages in order to get you. I believe there is formal opportunities and I am sure that those involved in trade will agree with me, there are far more opportunities that maybe we are not taking advantage of but still the challenge is sometime to find that investment in order to make your product develop to that level where you can really continuously meet certain quotas that you have to meet.”
Zamani Moodie, Advisor at the Caribbean Export Development Services, said that it is essential to understand the conditions one must comply with as well as the opportunities available to export to the European Union market.
Zamani Moodie, Advisor at the Caribbean Export Development Services: “So a lot of times we don’t export because there is fear of what is new, either they find ideal strategic partners in markets, that’s important and also spend the time to do the necessary groundwork as we enter this market because as it relates to product there is no doubt that Belize and the Caribbean have some of the highest quality products in the world which are very competitive. Belize have very high quality products, quality service, it is also a prefered destination, its private for investment so Belize is very competitive on the International stage and not only amongst other caribbean countries but globally.
Participants were sensitized to the export opportunities under EPA in order to access the European market to expand their reach.