Official urges regular investment workshops for private sector

24/11/2015

A senior official of the Office of Commerce and Investment (OCI) of the Republic of the Marshall Islands has urged Pacific Islands Trade &amp; Invest (PT&amp;I) NZ to conduct regular Investment Workshops in Pacific Island countries to keep abreast of the best business practices in order to gain access to finance for their investment projects.<!--more-->

[caption id="attachment_7534" align="alignleft" width="400"]<a href="https://pacifictradeinvest.com/PTI/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/rsz_jone_louie-LARGE.jpg"><img class="wp-image-7534 size-full" src="https://pacifictradeinvest.com/PTI/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/rsz_jone_louie-LARGE.jpg" alt="rsz_jone_louie LARGE" width="400" height="300" /></a> Jone Louie, Business Development Manager of the Office of Commerce and Investment of the Republic of the Marshall Islands (in blue shirt) speaks at the Private Sector Dialogue.[/caption]

Referring to the recent series of successful PT&amp;I Investment Workshops that were held in the Palau, Chuuk, Pohnpei and Majuro, Jone Louie, Business Development Manager of the Office of Commerce and Investment or OCI said the workshops were designed to enhance and upskill small entrepreneurs and other private sector participants in preparing a professional investment profile which is acceptable to the banking sector and potential investors.

The workshops also covered significant issues on global investment climate, factors affecting investment decisions like GDP and inflation, opportunities for investment, how to make investment decisions and objectives of investors and finance providers, Mr Louie said. Mr Louie expressed thanks to PT&amp;I for conducting the workshops.

He was speaking at the Private Sector Dialogue in Cook Islands late last that representatives from Forum Island countries participated in discussing key areas for building the capacity of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME). PT&amp;I NZ Trade Commissioner Michael Greenslade and COO and Head of Investment Manuel Valdez attended dialogue. This was the sixth year that the regional Private Sector Dialogue with policy decision makers was held.

“The discussions at the dialogue focused on four key issues,” Mr Valdez told Pacific Periscope. “These were  constraints and solutions to accessing finance; creating coherent policy and enabling environments to strengthen MSMEs; developing national trade related policies which take into account and target the growth of MSMEs; and considering innovative ICT solutions to ease day-to-day business transactions.”

[caption id="attachment_7536" align="alignright" width="400"]<a href="https://pacifictradeinvest.com/PTI/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/rsz_psd-mikeLARGE.jpg"><img class="size-full wp-image-7536" src="https://pacifictradeinvest.com/PTI/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/rsz_psd-mikeLARGE.jpg" alt="Dame Meg Taylor, Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat makes a point at a panel discussion at the Private Sector Dialogue. At left is PT&amp;I NZ Trade Commissioner Michael Greenslade. " width="400" height="300" /></a> Dame Meg Taylor, Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat makes a point at a panel discussion at the Private Sector Dialogue. At left is PT&amp;I NZ Trade Commissioner Michael Greenslade.[/caption]

Successful examples of MSMEs, governments and communities working together were also showcased at the event. One of these was the pilot cannery project where the Office of Commerce and Investment (OCI) and Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) carried out the joint project in Marshall Islands. It is a community-based project, which small community groups could implement with raw materials (skipjack tuna and mackerel) readily available to make finished products that are in high demand.

Participants also learned the art of canning and cooking skipjack and mackerel in different varieties in brine and oil.  It attracted a wide interest from women’s groups and private and public sectors. A top bank executive who was also in the workshop committed to sponsor the training that will be held for the certification of canners and advised the participants that the bank would be willing to provide loans to the certified canners.

“Ongoing support is encouraged to further strengthen and expand the impact of this forum and better position this dialogue to address key existing and emerging issues,” Mr Valdez says.

The PT&amp;I Investment Workshops were made possible by funding from the Japanese Government.

For more information, email PT&amp;I NZ COO and Head of Investment Manuel Valdez: manuel.v@pacifictradeinvest.co.nz

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