Statement
4 November 2019 - 11:10am

Remarks by Junior Minister for Trade and Economic Development
Honourable Sharie DeCastro
During the Opening of the Regional Training on the UNIDO Methodology on Investment Project Preparation and Appraisal

Monday 4th, November, 2019
9:00 a.m.

Good morning to everyone.

It is my pleasure to welcome all of you here to this very important training that will benefit governments across the region. 

The Government of the Virgin Islands is steadily working towards strong and sustainable economic development and growth to create jobs, attract investments, and improve the overall living standards of the people in this Territory.

We are at an important juncture in the history of the Virgin Islands where we must transform and revitalise the economy

We are at an important juncture in the history of our Territory where we must be innovative so that we could achieve greater levels of economic productivity with concentration in diversification and digitisation.

We also recognise that now is the time for us to invest significantly in the development of the Territory’s human resources as it is our vision as a Government to achieve sustainable economic growth and prosperity for all with new and deepened skills.

This morning the Government of the Virgin Islands through the Premier's Office is pleased to host, in partnership with the Caribbean Association of Investment Promotion Agencies (CAIPA) and United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) this five-day training course for the Investment Promotion Agencies (IPA) during from 4th to 8th November.

The BVI continues to appreciate its relationship and membership in CAIPA, and therefore welcomes today’s training that focuses on capacity building, technical assistance in the establishment of the IPA and its programmes, as well as networking and support in adopting best practices from across the region in the promotion of investments.

I am happy that the training focuses on the internationally accepted UNIDO methodologies and tools for project formulation and appraisal, including the software COMFAR which is the acronym for Computer Model for Feasibility Analysis and Reporting.

As this Government continues to green the BVI economy, COMFAR is a  welcomed software that will help the Government with computing financial statements needed for financial and economic appraisal of investment projects.

What this means is that once adopted, the BVI Government, through the IPA, will be able to efficiently and effectively facilitate investments by being able to evaluate their potential economic benefit to the BVI.

I am excited about this training based on the following objectives:

  1. The introduction of concepts, methodologies, and tools of financial analysis and appraisal can help the IPA to better evaluate investments:
  1. The enhancement of knowledge and skills in the preparation and appraisal of Investment Projects using the UNIDO methodology will help to build the capacity within the IPA.
  1. The experience shared among participants will seek to establish Best Practices in the area of the project development cycle within the region.
  1. And of course, the development of a core group of professionals well versed in investment project identification, preparation, and appraisal, will lead ultimately to well-planned investment projects and prudent investment decisions by governments throughout the region.

These objectives, among others, are keys to the establishment of the IPA (BVI Invest), in terms of ensuring that as a Territory, we have the adequate resources, through which we can seek to create an attractive investment climate and ensure the ease of doing business within the BVI.

I look forward to the outcome and would like to thank our partners, CAIPA and UNIDO, as well as our Premier’s Office team for facilitating this important training.

I also wish to thank all of the participants from across the region and I look forward to seeing the successful outcomes that will be derived following the completion of the course.

I thank you. 

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