Chamber hails success from two trade missions

By Fay Simmons

Tribune Business Reporter


The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation’s (BCCEC) chairman has hailed its hosting of two recent trade missions as a success.

Krystle Rutherford-Ferguson told Tribune Business that both events generated positive feedback from Bahamian business owners. She said: “After two weeks of intensive collaboration and strategic engagements, the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers’ Confederation considers its involvement and participation in two business-focused trade missions a success.

“We have received positive feedback from our members and partners to further support our sentiments. Mrs Rutherford-Ferguson said both events - the first-ever UK trade mission to The Bahamas for more than 20 years, and the visit by a group of Jamaican manufacturers - set out to increase trade opportunities and strengthen business relationships.

She said: “These local missions were aimed at fostering greater economic ties, increasing trade levels between our countries and exploring mutually-beneficial opportunities. It is important to note that both missions resulted from partnerships and efforts to foster greater business relations, local partnerships and synergies. We were pleased to see that our efforts were returned with a reciprocal mission to The Bahamas.”

Mrs Rutherford-Ferguson said the UK conducted its first trade mission to The Bahamas in two decades after a series of virtual business events facilitated by the Chamber, while the Jamaica Manufacturers and Exporters Association (JMEA) held a trade mission last week.

She said: “During the first week, the BCCEC welcomed a business delegation from the United Kingdom, the first in more than 20 years. This built on the BCCEC’s collaboration with the Caribbean Council UK and the British High Commission, where we had two successful virtual business-to-business events earlier in the year and an in-person visit to London on investments and doing business in The Bahamas.

“The second trade mission welcomed a business delegation from Jamaica, which built on a fact-finding mission earlier in the year.” Mrs Rutherford-Ferguson explained that both trade missions yielded networking opportunities and meetings focused on renewable energy, financial services, construction and manufacturing.

She said: “Delegates from the UK and Jamaica engaged in constructive dialogue with Bahamian businesses through B2B (business-to-business) meetings where they discussed trade, investment prospects and market trends. Meetings focused on sector specific areas such as renewable energy, financial services, construction and manufacturing.

“The mission facilitated extensive networking opportunities. Business leaders, entrepreneurs and government officials had a chance to interact, establish connections and explore avenues for joint ventures.”

Mrs Rutherford-Ferguson added that the Chamber will be hosting a local trade show next month and is “pleased to partner” with stakeholders to explore opportunities for the business community.

She said: “The BCCEC continues to provide opportunities for our members and the wider business community and, on November 4, 2023, we will be hosting a local trade show, along with other exciting events later in the year.

“The BCCEC was also pleased to partner with other stakeholders such as the Bahamas Trade Commission, the Small Business Development Centre and the Bahamas Financial Services Board.”


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