PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – A Haiti Trade and Investment Forum (HTIF), a major effort to spur economic development and democratic governance in the Caribbean country, will be held at the Karibe Convention Center in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, November 15-16.
Organization of American States (OAS) Assistant Secretary General Albert R. Ramdin — who has responsibility for the Organization’s Haiti Task Force and who is overseeing preparations for the Forum — welcomed the announcement, declaring: “Ever since President René Préval assumed office in May 2006, we at the OAS have been working to provide much-needed support to the new Government, to contribute to the creation of an enabling environment for increased trade and investment in Haiti.”
The upcoming event will bring together foreign investors and high-level representatives of the Haitian government and private sector to explore enhanced possibilities for doing business in Haiti through the Haitian Hemispheric Opportunity through Partnership Encouragement (HOPE) Act and in sectors such as tourism, agribusiness, bio-fuels, infrastructure expansion, handicrafts, ITC and telecommunications. It will also inform participants about the projects and procurement opportunities of the multilateral development banks.
“I share the view that the best way to support the consolidation of democratic governance and improve the security environment in Haiti is to generate business, create jobs and reduce poverty levels. The HTIF is a major step in this direction,” Ambassador Ramdin explained.
Noting that over the past year there have been significant advances in the political and security climate in Haiti, Ramdin was also of the view that encouraging private sector investment was the best way of ensuring economic growth and social development in the French-speaking Caribbean country.
The HTIF is being organized by the Government of Haiti, the Organization of American States and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), with significant financial support from the Canadian Government through the IDB-Canada Trade Fund, and with the collaboration of private sector groups in and outside Haiti, and the Haitian diaspora.
Preparatory activities are well advanced, with a Website (www.htif2007.org) launched for additional information and on-line registration.