For many years the Chamber has been involved in various on-going programs. These include the Junior Achievement program, Business Missions and our Annual Chamber awards, which recognises individual and company achievements. If you have any ideas or information on programs that you feel the Chamber should be involved in, please contact us.
Over the last three years the St Lucia Chamber of Commerce Industry & Agriculture has successfully organised and coordinated business and trade missions to neighbouring islands to facilitate expansion of markets to the local business sector.
Led by the Executive Director of the St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce Industry and Agriculture, Brian Louisy, eight local firms returned to St. Lucia on Saturday 4 th September, 2004 from what has been described as a fairly successful Business Mission. The Mission visited two countries, leaving St. Lucia on Sunday August 29 th and returning Saturday September 4 th . August 29 th to 1 st September were spent in St. Maarten, while the afternoon of 1 st September to 4 th September was spent in Tortola , with two day exhibitions taking place in both countries.
Though the Mission was hampered by the serious concerns in St. Maarten over hurricane Frances , participants in the Mission were still able to make some valuable contacts while in this Dutch Caribbean Island . The firms were particularly interested in St. Maarten not just as a market in and of itself with its large number of tourists and high per capita income but also as a gateway to the neighboring islands and economies of Anguilla, St. Kitts, Curacao and Aruba to name a few. St. Maarten is a major shopping centre in the north Caribbean with its duty free shopping regime.
The Business Mission hopes that if this market can be successfully entered, not just for local consumption, but for onward transshipment and redistribution to neighbouring islands a significant amount of business can materialise.
Trade Officer in the St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce Industry and Agriculture Grace Herman, who was the principle organiser, had hoped to have some twelve firms participate but a number of unforeseen circumstances led to last minute cancellations and withdrawals. Participating in the Business Mission were Caribbean Awnings Ltd., St. Lucia Coconut Growers, Aunt Linda's and Eden Herbs, Fabs Fantasy Ltd., Solar Dynamics, Natmed, Frootsy Foods. In addition to those participating companies the Mission was able to provide information and give out brochures on behalf of Wild Orchids and Flowers of St. Lucia as well as circulate investment brochures and tourism information on behalf of both the National Development Corporation and the St. Lucia Tourist Board.
The response coming out of Tortola was a bit more enthusiastic as they were unencumbered by the threat of any hurricane and the two day exhibition was heavily visited by Business Persons and the public alike, particularly St. Lucians living in Tortola . While in Tortola the Head of Mission Brian Louisy and Business Advisor from the OECS Export Development Unit, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Project, Melbour Philip who accompanied the Mission paid courtesy calls on the Governor of Tortola and the Chief Minister. Additionally Brian Louisy addressed the Rotary Club of Tortola at the weekly luncheon which resulted in many members of the Rotary Club visiting the Mission subsequently.
The St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce Industry and Agriculture has over the last seven years organized a number of business missions to various Caribbean Destinations to facilitate the participating companies exploring, penetrating and strengthening the position in various markets. This year the Ministry of Commerce supported the Mission , but was unable to have a representative accompany the Mission as planned earlier. A number of the Companies participating in the Mission were supported financially by the OECS Export Development Unit, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Project which has been working with these firms to help improve their competitiveness and export capacity.
The Chamber therefore thanks the Ministry of Commerce for their continued support and partnership in export development as well as the OECS Export Development Unit which has supported its work over the years in many different ways. The Chamber also wishes to advise its members and the wider business community that the Jamaican Business Community has invited St. Lucia to mount a return Mission to that country and interested firms are asked to contact the Chamber at their earliest convenience to indicate their interest in participating in such a Mission.
The Chamber Business Mixer Program was developed by the Chamber Membership Committee to bring members together in an informal setting to meet and network as well as discuss current issues affecting the business community.
Mixers are sometimes sponsored by individual firms and sometimes one or two firms get together to host a mixer. The most successful mixers in terms of member attendance occurs with the First Business Mixer of each Year termed “The Nominees.”
At this Mixer many of the firms which were nominated for Chamber Awards put on a display and the winners feted.
If your firm is interested in hosting a nominee send us an email and we will work with you to make it an absolute success.
The Second Tuesday: An Encounter with the Public Sector
The Chamber Secretariat has re-launched its Series of Encounters with the Public Sector, under the new name “The Second Tuesday: an Encounter with the Public Sector”. “The Second Tuesday: an Encounter with the Public Sector” is an interactive forum of two hours, where Chamber members can engage in constructive dialogue with Senior Public Sector Officials and leave with a better appreciation for the rules, policy and requirements for effective interaction with the various public sector institutions.
“The Second Tuesday: An Encounter with the Public Sector” brings members into a close and intimate dialogue with the public sector and is scheduled for the second Tuesday of every month at the Bay Gardens Hotel from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
If you have challenges dealing with a particular public sector institution and wish to better understand this institutions mandate, rules, regulations and how you can make their work easier, give us a call or drop us an email .and we will arrange an “Encounter” for you.
The Chamber Sports Program was developed to establish a program of sports activities for the business community that encourages participation of workers of all ages and sex. This would help enhance the health, mental and physical fitness and improve productivity of participants while building team spirit, corporate identity, and encouraging friendly rivalry within the commercial sector.
The program is built around the commercial football league but also includes dominoes and netball. The Chamber is eager to work with other sports disciplines to broaden the program.
The Chamber, by its very modus operandi, supports the development of small business and its smaller members. The use of a differential pricing structure that approximates an ability to pay the larger members of the Chamber subsidizes the smaller ones.
Through this Smaller Member Support Program the Chamber seeks to offer the smaller members some special opportunities and benefits and we continue to seek ways to do so.
In the first instance smaller members i.e. members in the lowest subscription class are permitted two mass mail outs free of charge annually. The first twenty members who subscribe to the program will be entitled to participate in two training programs at discounted prices during the year. Participants will be permitted to advertise in the Executive Director’s Annual Report at a fraction of the cost of other non participating members.
Please complete the attached form and submit to the Secretariat to sign up and start receiving your benefits.
[This form is under development]
If you have any other ideas which we can implement that will bring benefits to the Smaller Member Support Program give us a call and share them with us.
The 2011 Trade Lecture Series is designed to provide a platform for engagement between trade officials and the Business Community, provision of updates on trade issues and general information dissemination on ongoing trade developments.It will also serve as an avenue for discussion and exchange of information on developments in Trade impacting the business community.
The Lecture Series is a Chamber Member Only Event and is held on the third Thursday of every month at the Bay Gardens Hotel from 3.00pm to 5.00pm. Interested members are advised to confirm their participation by contacting the Secretariat or completeing the attached form.
The Chamber of Commerce under its Trade Facilitation and Compliance Programme has set up a weekly Trade Clinic at its offices. These meetings will occur weekly on a Thursday afternoon from 3.00pm to 4.30pm.
The Clinic is an accessible way to discuss any issues arising from existing or proposed regional/international business.The clinics allow one to one discussions, with the Chamber's Trade Programe Manager who will be able to provide guidance on aspects of Trade in Goods and Services.
The Clinic meetings are members only and a re provided as a free service. Members are urged to book sessions no later than 4.30 pm on the Tuesday prior to the Trade clinic meeting. Booking may be done through the Chamber secretariat or by filling in and submitting the attached form on the website.
The Trade Facilitation and Compliance Programme is designed as a multiprong approach to addressing the needs of members ranging from import/export requirements for trade in goods, facilitating the move skills and increasing the awareness of opportunites present under several trading agreements including the OECS Economic Union, The Caricom SIngle Market nd Economy and the CARIFORUM EU Economic PArtnership AGreement.
The programme includes but is not limited to:
The Second Tuesday: An Encounter with the Public Sector
The Chamber 2011 Trade Lecture Series
Chamber Membership Trade Clinics
Trade Insights monthly eBrief on trade related matters
Development of the NAtional Trade Facilitation TAsk Force Work Programme
The programme is co ordianted under the lead of Ms. Dinah Hippolyte, Programme Manager, Trade Facilitation and Compliance
Mind Your Business is a program to develop small business in St. Lucia through a series of practical guidance workshops led by practicing professionals.
Mind Your Business is geared at immediately improving how businesses manage and operate their affairs.
The Workshop Sessions are low cost and heavily subsidized by the St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce so that they are affordable and within the reach of all businesses.
The Workshops will be convenient to attend as they will be conducted after hours, i.e. 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., so that they do not interfere with normal business operations.
The Series seeks to teach and promote the proper and effective “Management of Business” and as such is titled “Mind Your Business.”
The Workshops are not theoretical discourses but practical applied sessions which will be led not by Lecturers or Trainers but practitioners in the field who on daily basis apply and use the systems and approaches that will be shared.