The Bankers Association of Trinidad and Tobago (BATT) met with three key stakeholders in Tobago on Friday 29th September to determine how all parties can work together to chart a path forward for the business community and assist with the Tobago economy given the prevailing economic challenges.
The first meeting was held with the Tobago House of Assembly and the Minister of Tourism, the Honourable Shamfa Cudjoe at the office of the Chief Secretary of the Tobago House of Assembly. The main objective of the meeting was to have a clear picture of the challenges that were facing the Tobago businesses, to identify the gaps and determine how all parties can work together to assist.
A shared commitment was made by all to assist with the institutional strengthening of the business community and the development of the SME sector in Tobago via specific targeted projects.
Following this meeting, BATT met with the Tobago Division of T&T Chamber of Industry and Commerce and the Tobago Hotels and Tourism Association at the Standard Distributors, Ansa McAL Centre.
Several items were discussed where all parties contributed meaningfully to provide an overall view of the issues that were plaguing the Tobago businesses and by extension the economy. Some of the items discussed included:
- The business’ efficacy on the island
- BATT outlook of the economy
- The position of the Government Loan Guarantee Program
- The way forward in assisting the business community
Arising out of the meeting, specific action items were identified, which would begin this week. These action items were established with BATT’s expectation that all parties would work together, in order to navigate these challenging times, over the next 18 months with the objective of positioning Tobago business for future growth.
BATT felt both meetings were very cordial, productive and fruitful, as we were able to clear the air on certain issues realizing that one of the major challenges was communication.
The assurance was given by the member banks that they are committed to the success of their clients and would continue to work collectively and individually with the Tobago community in strengthening and building their businesses for the future.
BATT believes this can only be done collectively and as such appreciated the collaborative approach as we all understood it is a shared responsibility with the aim of achieving positive outcomes.