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Project coming to 'turbocharge' African-Caribbean trade

Pamela Coke Hamilton, Executive Director of the International Trade Centre
 
A project is being formalised to boost trade between the Caribbean and the African continent.
 
Pamela Coke Hamilton, Executive Director of the International Trade Centre, says the initiative is expected to "turbocharge" trade and investment between the two regions. 
 
"Together we will focus on developing five priority value chains that have major potential for inclusive and sustainable economic transformation, led by the two regions' small businesses while tackling food security and other risks we face. Projects like these have also taught us however that value chain development and small business competitiveness can only get us so far," she noted. 
 
She said there are a number of untapped areas. 
 
"The past decade alone, for instance, shows that the share of African exports that goes to the Caribbean has been decreasing not increasing. Today, less than 0.1 per cent of African exports go to the Caribbean and less than 3 per cent of Caribbean exports go to the African continent," Mrs. Coke Hamilton pointed out.  
 
"Looking past share volume we can also see those exports in either direction remain far too concentrated in just a handful of sectors with little value addition, like unprocessed chemicals and minerals, despite all that these two regions have to offer. That's despite the potential that we see in exports like machinery, electricity, plastics, rubber, processed food products and mineral products."    
 
She was speaking at the opening session of the Afreximbank Annual Meetings in the Bahamas on Wednesday.


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