Million dollar boost
A total of 16 Barbadian firms have received a financial injection of just over $1 million under the latest Caribbean Export Development Agency’s Direct Assistance Grant Scheme (DAGS) call for proposals.
DAGS is one component of the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) with a total value of $28.3 million over five years. It is scheduled to culminate in December next year.
It is designed to specifically provide direct financial assistance to individuals, firms and business support organisations with the potential to export their products and services.
The DAGS call for proposals was opened in January 7, 2014 and closed in March 7, 2014.
Making the announcement at the agency’s Baobab Towers office today, executive director of Caribbean Export Pamela Coke Hamilton said the industries benefiting included manufacturing, professional services and the creative industry.
“Since the 9th EDF between 2008 and 2010 Barbadian firms have been able to access DAGS to enhance their competitiveness with some 33 Barbadian firms out of a total 197 firms across the 15 member states across the region being awarded grants. This trend has continued,” she said.
Coke Hamilton said in this latest round a total of 136 firms across CARIFORUM have been awarded grants valued at just over $8 million.
“One hundred of these firms were awarded grants under the regular procedures facility, which reimburses a maximum of $81,000 or 30,000 Euros. Thirty one firms were awarded grants on the accelerated procedures which reimburses a maximum of BDS$13,500 or 5,000 Euros. Of this total 16 Barbadian firms were awarded grants valued at $1 million. Thirteen firms were awarded regular procedures grant and three were awarded accelerated grants,” announced
She said of significance were the three grants awarded to the business support organisations; the Barbados Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (BADMC), the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation (BIDC) and the Copyright Society, Composers, Authors and Publishers (COSCAP).
Some of the companies benefiting from the grant included BICO Ltd, Blue Waters Production, the Barbados Dairy Industries Ltd, Harris Paints, AC Woodhouse Inc. Armstrong Manufacturing, Caribbean Consultants Ltd and the West Indies Rum Distilleries.
The companies will be using the grant to undertake a range of activities including film productions, licensing rights in music, e-commerce development, food safety certification and expansion of markets and brands, among others.
The EU is expected to roll out the 11th EDF to CARIFORUM soon with a funding of approximately 360 million Euros, of which 110 million Euros will go toward regional implementation and the EPA implementation.