The Ministry of Commerce, Enterprise and Small Business Development is seeking to promote and support business continuity planning in Micro, Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (MSME’s) in the tourism, and agro-processing sectors among others.
The Ministry is doing so through a workshop on ‘Maintaining Comprehensive Disaster Risk Management in the MSME Support Ecosystems of the Caribbean Region’ at the Goodwill Parish Hall.
Sixty persons involved in the micro, small and medium-sized enterprises were invited to attend the two-day workshop which opened on Wednesday 16 May 2018.
Director of the Centre for Environment Management of the Institute of Sustainable Development of the University of the West Indies, Dr David Smith, told participants while he is hopeful that recovery efforts will continue the aim is to prepare them for the next climatic event.
“We want to help you become prepared for the next event, because there will be another event at some point,” Dr. Smith stated.
“We want to help you so that the next event that comes along, you won’t be affected as badly, and you will be able to open your business much more quickly than you have been able to do this time,” he added.
Dr. Smith explained further that the aim of the workshop is to also help participants reduce the amount of damage suffered and reduce the amount of disruption so that they will not have to lay off employees and return to a functioning business as quickly as possible.
This capacity building workshop is hosted in collaboration with the Organization of American State (OAS) and the Institute of Sustainable Development of the University of the West Indies.
Director of the Disaster Risk Reduction Centre at the Institute of Sustainable Development of the University of the West Indies, Dr. Barbara Carby, who will also help facilitate the workshop, said “it is very, very important that we ensure that our small and medium sized enterprises are as prepared as possible and are as resilient as possible for future events”.
The OAS, through its Department of Economic Development is hopeful that through the workshop the participants will learn concrete tools to achieve resilience in the sector.
The two-day workshop is being facilitated by Michael Beetle of the Institute for Business Continuity Training.
“What we want to do today and tomorrow is to provide you with these concrete tools and we invite you to engage with Mr. Bittle, who will be leading the discussion, because we also want to learn from what you have experienced over the last few months,” Robert said.
She informed the participants that their experience will be shared with the other countries in the region.