BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, June 10th 2013 - The Federal Government of St. Kitts and Nevis, cognisant of the role played by the micro, small and medium-size enterprises (MSMEs), will continue to assist and promote the sector through a number of interventions.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of International Trade, Industry, Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Mr Charleton Edwards, has said that among the interventions would be the securing of a fund in the amount of US$3,000,000 (three million USD) for on lending to MSMEs through the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis.
Mr Edwards made the remarks on Monday June 10 at the Ocean Terrace Inn (OTI), where he delivered the feature address at the opening ceremony of a four-day workshop organised by National Entrepreneurial Development Division (NEDD) of the Ministry, and the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis.
“The Government will continue to do its part to assist and promote the development of MSMEs in St. Kitts and Nevis,” said Mr Edwards. Other interventions include the establishment of a special fund to provide financing to MSMEs via SIDF; and securing of a grant to conduct an energy audit for the manufacturing sector.
Also among the interventions include the securing of a grant to conduct a market research to identify potential markets and buyers for agro-processed products of St. Kitts and Nevis; the development of a MSMEs strategy; and the continued technical support and concessions granted via National Entrepreneurial Development Division (NEDD).
“I wish to urge each and everyone to use this opportunity wisely and get a greater understanding of the financial management techniques that would afford you the opportunity to compete in the domestic, regional and international markets,” the Permanent Secretary advised the participants.
On being asked about the fund, Mr Edward advised that US$1.5 million has already been disbursed to the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis for on lending to MSMEs.
Development Bank’s head of Business Support Unit Mr Shavon Douglas echoed Mr Edward’s commitment when he told the participants: “It is no secret that the backbone of any economy rests on persons like you: the small, medium and micro enterprises. We spare no effort to offer continued support to you.”
According to the workshop’s co-organiser, and Business Development Officer at the National Entrepreneurial Development Division, Mr Philip Browne, the four-day workshop on Financial Management Techniques for Micro, Small, and Medium-sized Enterprises in St. Kitts is sponsored by the Caribbean Development Bank.
“The workshop is aimed at managerial level micro, small and medium-sized business operators who are positioned to influence and introduce effective and efficient financial management techniques in a comprehensive and holistic manner, hence facilitating the development and implementation of strategies which will foster business expansion, profitability and sustainability,” observed Mr Browne.
The workshop is being facilitated by Mr Leon Natta, an Accountant at the Customs and Excise, who said that the objective of the Financial Management Technique workshop is to improve the business skills of local MSMEs and to address common challenges facing MSMEs in the identification and interpretation of financial management issues.
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