Business & Finance
This is related to the business and financial issues related to Haiti and the Haitan community. We discuss issues such as job opportunities, how to create a business in Haiti, how to finance a project, and more.
On Tuesday, June 3, 2015, the U.S. government through its agency for International Development (USAID), has celebrated the success of its Leveraging Effective Application of Direct Investments (LEAD) program by honoring 31 Business Plan Competition (BPC) winners, in an effort to encourage the need to continue job creation and Haitian diaspora outreach programs. The occasion was graced by the presence of the USAID Ad Interim Director Christian Barratt, the Minister of Haitians Living Abroad, M. Robert Labrousse, and representatives of the Central Bank of Haiti. The 31 winning enterprises were honored with certificates of achievement for their contribution in job creation and resilience to the Haitian economy. The LEAD program called for fulfillment of two main objectives: income generation and job creation (over 8,000 jobs have been created under the program), and enhancing the development impact of Diaspora remittances.
The Superior Court of Audits and Administrative Disputes (CSCCA) has just released its report covering 2013-2014 fiscal year. Justice Saint-Juste said the report found suspicious activity relating to government contracts going against public procurement laws. Specifically he said the contracts in question lacked transparency, and were drafted for excessively high amounts. One of the contracts designated for relief funds violated the 2012 emergency law to help famers, who sustained crop losses because of storms Isaac and Sandy.
What CSCCA also found was Petrocaribe had funded 30 projects, of which 33% had no basis in fact. Some 13% had "serious irregularities." CSCCA will audit the questionable projects to affix blame where it belongs.
President Jean Henry of the Conference of Rectors, Presidents, and Heads of Higher Education Institutions in Haiti signed a partnership agreement with Representative Jean-Paul Jourdan of the French Conference of University Presidents while Minister Manigat of the Ministry of Education looked on. Haitian and French university rectors were also present.
The formal agreement between the two countries will last five years and continues the flow of technical assistance from French universities to Haitian higher education learning. Technical assistance will include executive training, research development, and curriculum development with the emergence of double majors. One tangential purpose of the agreement is to underscore France's commitment in advancing Francophonie in Haiti, whose lead has helped spread the practice of it throughout the Americas.
Minister of Trade and Industry (MCI), Herve Day, of the Department of Quality Control and Consumer Protection (DCQPC) spoke at a conference on World Consumer Rights Day. He talked about the formation of the Law Project on Consumer Protection (LPCP), and the Haitian Bureau of Standards and Metrology (HBSM), both of which need the approval of Parliament to implement them. A vote to establish LPCP and HBSM will strengthen consumer rights.
MCI has been vigorous in regularly auditing the procedures at distribution sites that manufacture and sell food products. Pre-packaged foods are being inspected to insure manufacturers are being compliant with regulatory law. The facilities are also being inspected for adherence to hygiene standards.
The United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (Eclac) issued its ranking of the economies in the Caribbean and their growth. Trinidad and Tobago, one of the region's more prosperous nations, followed Haiti in the ranking.
The list showed the growth projections for 2014, and list Trinidad and Tobago as ninth, with three percent less economic growth than the Dominican Republic, which leads the region in fast-growing economies. Haiti's ranking on this list is fourth, with a projected growth of 3.5 for 2014.
With Trinidad listed as one of the High Income countries in the world, it is one of the wealthiest nations in the Caribbean. Much of their economic wealth comes from gas and oil, of which they are the leading regional producers. The country also exports beverages, food, and cement. In the past, Trinidad and Tobago enjoyed economic growth at 12.6% for 2006, but saw a sharp decline to only 5.5% in 2007.
Commissioner Joseph Montinor of the Directorate General of Taxes (DGI) has some explaining to do as to why his office seized industrialist Michel Apaid's passport at the Toussaint Louverture Airport before he boarded a flight for travel abroad. The reason given was Apaid had not paid taxes on his privately-held company after his deductible period expired in 2005.
Apaid's attorney has come to his defense to clear his name in the public domain. Gervais Charles points out Apaid's franchise was extended another ten years, and he never owed taxes to the state as ex-Senator Joseph Lambert had claimed Apaid did.
Although Haiti is making small steps in becoming a friendlier environment to business, it is important to notice that these steps are forward. According to the latest report Doing Business 2015 issued by the World Bank, Haiti overall improved by one point, moving from a position of 181 in 2014 to 180 for 2015.
Here are the areas Haiti was rated upon:
In Starting a Business, Haiti did not do well there. It lost one point from a year ago ranking 188th out of 189 economies in the world. It is still averages around 97 days to open a business in Haiti.
In a bold act of overreaching the boundaries of his office, President Martelly had contractor, Dejoux, arrested for his shabby construction of a stage Martelly was to appear on to celebrate completion of government projects in the Ouanaminthe area. Not only was Dejoux taken into custody by Police Commissioner, Bio Moncher, but provisional town mayor, Amos Joseph, was worked over by a secret service agent in another incident that day. Government observers say the two incidents were willful, unreasonable, and place the government of Haiti outside the law. They note Martelly has no knowledge of the construction trade or code enforcement.
Haiti must be doing something right. The island comprising of Haiti and the Dominican Republic is expected to lead the entire Caribbean region economically in the next two years. Based on the latest update of the International Monetary Fund's World Economic Outlook report, these two countries are expected to grow on an average between 3.75 percent for Haiti and 4.75 percent for the Dominican Republic.
Are we witnessing the shifting of power in the region?
Experts already predicted if this trend continues, in just a few years, the Island of Hispaniola will be the center of economic activities for the region.
Ennery is a small metro area of 31,285 citizens, located in Gonaives Arrondissement under the Artibonite Department. Ennery is a tourist spot, whose chief attraction is Puilboreau Mountain. Placid and quiet, it is a locale for those, who wish to avoid the crowds that flock to more crowded destinations on the island.
Village Ennery is the town's main hotel. It attracts the tourist trade and businesspeople, who enjoy seclusion away from business conferences and seminars. The hotel contains air-conditioned units decorated in the Indian Chiefdoms Era. There is a restaurant serving Haitian cuisine, a swimming pool, a nightclub, catered events, and historical sites close by.
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