by Eulana Weekes
St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): The St. Kitts and Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce is collaborating with the Federal Government of St.Kitts and Nevis to mitigate the impact caused by the Coronavirus Pandemic. During an exclusive interview with WINN Media, Mr. Kevin Hope, Executive Director of the Chamber shared the efforts being made to assist in this regard.
“Over the last year, we would have worked along with the Government in terms of helping to mitigate the effects of the COVID 19 Pandemic and we would have been inactive discussions with the Ministry of Finance, Health, Tourism, International Affairs, to ensure both households and businesses survive during the pandemic period. I know we would have, also in recent times and this is continuing also, collaborate with the Ministry of International Trade, Consumer Affairs, with the Ministry of Agriculture, Finance and other entities who are on the supply chain working group; so, we are actively discussing ways in which we could mitigate the impact of the Global Supply Chain bottleneck, both in terms of food supply and the prices on consumer goods; so we are very much committed to helping to contribute to providing relief to households.”
In addition, Hope mentioned that the Chamber is very active with its assistance to the building and expansion of businesses in St.Kitts and Nevis.
“The Chamber is very much active in the promotion of Entrepreneurship, Financial Literacy and Business Management Education, so we provide a lot of training to our membership and also extend that to key stakeholders,” said Hope.
The St. Kitts and Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce was recently engaged in a training exercise with the Organisation of the Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), where focus was placed on strategic planning and formulation. This function was attended by Permanent Secretaries and Private Sector Personnel.
The Executive Director disclosed that there is ongoing collaboration with the Nevis Division of the Chamber, as they seek to launch an Entrepreneurship and Innovation Centre. Hope said that the centre will “strongly benefit” a lot of businesses in the Federation; as the intention of the Chamber is to strengthen and provide business support services, not only to its membership, but to all businesses at large.
With the aim of strengthening the Manufacturing Industry within the Federation, Hope mentioned that the SKN Chamber of Industry and Commerce has also been in collaboration with the Manufacturing Division. He added that the Chamber has a lot of engagement with High Commissioners and Ambassadors to explore opportunities for Trade and Investments for St.Kitts and Nevis.
The St.Kitts and Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce has been in existence for 73 years. It is the recognized Private Sector voice in St.Kitts and Nevis, as well as regionally and internationally; according to Mr. Hope.
“We advocate for our members and we do so by trying to influence the policy and regulatory environment in St. Kitts and Nevis; to ensure that it’s conducive to job creation and private sector development and also inclusive growth. We actively look to build and expand businesses within St.Kitts and Nevis and we’re committed to helping businesses succeed, so that we ensure that there is prosperity for families and that there is a growth in the number of enterprises and also the survival of enterprises within the Federation.
Hope added, “We are connected to the community and we do this through our investments, our social investments, and also provide our leadership in areas such as education, health and also how we could collaborate with the Government and improve our infrastructure. We do a lot of community outreach and we give back also in terms of where we work with Social Services and Gender Affairs.”
Hope expressed his pleasure in assisting the Government, businesses, and consumers at large with our recovery from the pandemic.