Local businesses encouraged to embrace International Trade Portal

Ministry of Financial Services in collaboration with the Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce and the Employer’s Confederation hosted a one-day seminar on Friday

The much-anticipated International Trade Portal was introduced to businesspersons on Grand Bahama on Friday at the Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce prior to its commencement April 6.


The opportunity to have a Bahamas International Trade Information Service Portal materialized, thanks to collaboration between the government and The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and it is expected to facilitate and encourage exports from The Bahamas.


The Minister of Financial Services was on Grand Bahama Friday (March 24) to sensitize and encourage the business community of The Bahamas Trade Information Service Portal heralded as an important trade tool, which is set to launch April 6, 2017.


Minister for Financial Services, C.V. Hope Strachan joined the Minister for Grand Bahama, Dr. Michael Darville at a press conference at the Ministry for Grand BahamA to announce the project.


Following the press conference, a workshop was held at the Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce (GBCC) where Keva Bain, Legal Aid and Acting Director for Trade and Industry at the Ministry of Financial Services explained to The Freeport News that the government is seeking to make the business community aware of the new tool that will be made available. 


Bain said that both the government and The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce is cognizant of the importance of supporting local exporters and importers to expand trading opportunities, and took the opportunity while speaking to members of the business community on Grand Bahama to encourage persons to embrace the exciting opportunity.


Bain confirmed that the International Trade Centre (ITC), a specialized joint agency of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the United Nations (UN), was retained to provide the services to design and develop a Trade Portal for The Bahamas.


The Assistant Director stated that the ITC engaged the company Globally Cool Out of the Netherlands to assist in the design and development of the Portal. 


Bain noted that two consultants from that firm travelled with the minister’s team to Grand Bahama on Friday to provide sensitization of that important trade tool.


The Acting Director for Trade and Industry at the Ministry of Financial Services also shared that the Portal’s unique nature will – provide an online platform filled with market intelligence and information to Bahamian entrepreneurs, which in turn will create new opportunities for trade.


“While agreed to promote trade, the Portal will improve the ease of doing business as well. To the businessman, time is money and the information that will be available in this Portal will be easy to access, current, trade information,” Bain assured.


The Trade Portal, Bain added will – allow businesses exporting to be on the international stage through the Exporter Directory of Bahamian Exporters and Potential Exporters, which will provide Bahamian companies with an opportunity to showcase their products to potential international buyers.


Bain furthered that registering on the Exporter Directory is free to all businesses in the country, and urged Grand Bahamian exporters and potential exporters to register to have their businesses appear in the Exporter Directory.


Persons interested in having their business presented to the world through this invaluable tool are encouraged to contact representatives at the Ministry of Financial Services or the Chamber of Commerce where registration forms can be collected.


“The Bahamas government was blessed when they signed the contract with the ITC, very fortunate. The Portal is not a static entity; I like to think it is alive as current information will always be uploaded,” said Bain.


Noting that in the near future more sessions will be held for the business community, Bain said, the government is working closely with the Ministry for Grand Bahama, the GBCC and the GBPA to ensure trade becomes a real tool in the economy.


Published  Monday, March 27, 2017 


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