(Barbados Today) Roughly half of businesses across the Caribbean have had to shut shop and lose tens of thousands of dollars in revenue as a result of the pandemic, a regional trade official said Tuesday as he called for businesses and governments to turn the crisis into opportunities.
Executive Director of the Caribbean Export Development Agency Deodat Maharaj said he believed the COVID-19 pandemic had provided the opportunity for businesses to tweak their operations and use more technology.
Addressing the Small Business Association (SBA) Small Business Week 2021 State of the Sector Conference Maharaj cited a survey carried out with the Caribbean Development Bank that revealed that about half of businesses across the region had to close their operations last year at the height of the pandemic.
“Almost 50 per cent of respondents reported having to close their physical operation and halt operation,” he said. “Around 40 per cent of respondents reported having to change the nature of their daily operation including the use of virtual platforms to facilitate remote work.”