The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) facilitated the participation of representatives from Caribbean Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) at the Regional Workshop on Fostering the Green FDI Opportunity in Latin America & the Caribbean (LAC), organised by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in Bogota, Colombia from May 6– 8,2014. The event was attended by 50 participants, representing 25 countries in the LAC region.
Caribbean representatives at the event included the Antigua & Barbuda Investment Authority, IDCS of Suriname, the Grenada Industrial Development Corporation, Centre for Export and Investment in the Dominican Republic, the Centre for the Facilitation of Investments for Haiti, St. Kitts Investment Promotion Agency (SKIPA), the Guyana Investment Office, Jamaica Promotions Corporation, the Ministry of Economic Development for Curacao, invesTT (Trinidad & Tobago) and Invest Saint Lucia.
Delegates were privy to presentations on best practice examples for foreign direct investment (FDI) attraction into the renewable energy sector, namely, CENER (Spain’s Renewable Energy Centre), the Portland Development Commission of Oregon (USA) and ApexBarsil, as well as renewable energy investors such as the Acciona Group and Juwi Energías Renovables. In addition to providing the participants with data on global trends in low carbon investment and techniques on shaping the promotion strategy for an IPA, the seminar also sought to enhance the educational value of the experience through the use of group exercises, review of case studies on attracting Green FDI, and discussions with investors on their decision-making processes and site visits.
Based on information from the Financial Times Ltd. for 2013, of the US$62bn invested in Greenfield renewable/alternative energy projects globally, US$13.3bn was destined for the LAC region with more than 93% of these projects destined for the Latin American region only. “This data highlights the significant room for growth that is available to the Caribbean in this sector and the focused attention that must be made by regional IPAs to attract green investments. Caribbean Export in collaboration with CAIPA intends to continue to execute initiatives that focus the attention of investors on this sector in the region, equipping our investment promotion agencies with the skills necessary to promote renewable and alternative energy opportunities to investors,” notes Mrs. Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Executive Director of Caribbean Export.
Caribbean Export was pleased to support representative members of CAIPA in their mission to increase the visibility of the Caribbean as an ideal location for Green FDI investments, to the regional and international stakeholders present. The renewable energy sector is a priority focus for Caribbean IPAs given the financial barriers associated with doing business in the region due to exorbitant energy costs.