Both entities signed a cooperation agreement that will pave the way for positioning agroindustry as a driver of sustainable economic progress, prompting improvements in the quality of life of people in the Caribbean.
San José, 6 March 2019 (IICA). The Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and the Caribbean Industrial Research Institute (CARIRI) signed a general cooperation agreement that will focus on developing actions to strengthen the agriculture sector, the food industry, and agribusinesses in the Caribbean, in areas such as food security and trade.
The agreement, signed by Meghnath Gosein, CARIRI’s Executive Manager of Corporate Services, and IICA’s Representative in Trinidad and Tobago, Gregg Rawlins, will promote technology-, management-, and organizational development-related initiatives, in order to fast-track improvements in agriculture, the production of agricultural products and the revitalization of rural areas in the Greater Caribbean region.
Rawlins remarked that, “The skills and competencies of both institutions will complement each other, as we work to strengthen micro, small and medium-sized agricultural businesses, not only in Trinidad and Tobago, but also in other countries in the Caribbean region”.
Gosein commented that, having enjoyed an institutional working relationship of more than a decade, the formalization of the IICA-CARIRI partnership is “timely and will undoubtedly benefit the Caribbean economy”.
Together, both institutions have implemented initiatives linked to capacity development in micro, small and medium enterprises in the Caribbean, prioritizing health and food safety and competitiveness.
This strategic synergy will allow IICA to prioritize its technical cooperation actions in the region, by addressing the need to develop young, competitive agricultural entrepreneurs, who can place their food and non-food agricultural items in local markets, directly and indirectly responding to the needs of agricultural enterprises.
Rawlins went on to explain that, “In keeping with IICA’s efforts in international trade and regional integration, the Delegation in the country will work with partners to support the transformation of agricultural businesses in Trinidad and Tobago – to make them resistant, innovative, and competitive, with products that are ready for the primary markets and with a focus on regional exports”.
The formal agreement with the Caribbean Industrial Research Institute will be critical to achieving this goal.
This organization specializes in providing services to the media and industrial actors in the areas of industrial materials, food, biotechnology, environmental management, analytical chemistry, petroleum, calibration, business development, innovation, information technology and communication, and technical information.
These services complement and enhance IICA’s technical cooperation in the five strategic areas of focus of its 2018-2022 Medium Term Plan, for the development of agriculture in the Americas.
Diana Francis, International Specialist in Policy and Regional Programming, IICA Trinidad and Tobago Office.