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Inauguration of Caracol Industrial Park the Crown Jewel of Northern Haiti

Rene Preval And Michel Martelly At Caracol Industrial Park Inauguration

Opening ceremonies for Caracol Industrial Park (CIP) occurred on October 22, 2012. Michel Martelly, President of Haiti, hosted some of the biggest backers of northern Haiti's first industrial park, projected to eventually produce nearly 200,000 jobs. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, along with her husband, President Bill Clinton, presided over a crowd of investors and celebrities.

Haiti, the U.S., and the Inter-American Development Bank have donated a combined total of $464 million over the next six years. Other foundation and business donors are contributing to the development of Haiti's infrastructure.

Secretary Rodham-Clinton spoke before a lunch reception crowd. She told them that contributing to the sustained economic health of Haiti goes beyond sending relief aid to the earthquake-damaged island. On-going private investment in the infrastructure and economic initiatives to provide Haitians a better quality of life are key to raising Haiti out of its failed-state status. She said that although CIP was already in the planning stages before the 2010 earthquake shattered the country's infrastructure and economy, already feeble, the Obama administration has placed Haiti high on its priority list. The U.S. has followed through with a $124 million investment in CIP.

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Kesner Pharel AKA "Roro", a reference for economic studies

Renaissance businessman, Growth Group CEO Kesner Pharel is keen to endorse Haiti's positive strides to becoming a world tourism destination once more, following the earthquake on January 12, 2010. As part of a panel recently discussing the relisting of the nation on the destinations map of the world at a press conference, Pharel shared the spotlight with Haitian Minister of Tourism, Stephanie Balmir Villedrouin, and Pierre Chauvet, Tourist Association of Haiti (ATH) representative.

The panel discussed the country's inclusion on the WEF (World Economic Forum) list and put it into perspective as an indication of Haiti's resumption of forward momentum. They also enumerated the steps taken to achieve such progress and discussed those necessary for continued growth going forward. So far, the airport construction at Les Cayes and Cap-Haitien has played major roles in facilitating the growth, as well as other changes in standards and quality regulations in the sector. Travel packages with international airlines are underway and the building of hotel schools will make a solid investment in the hotel industry within the country.

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Partnership with Saint Thomas University helps bring Haiti's coffee to the global market

Coffee used to be Haiti's main agricultural industry; the country is also one of the Caribbean's oldest and original coffee producers. Yet Haitian coffee has been overlooked and unrecognized in the world market. This is due to the difficulty in entering Haitian coffee to the international market, as well as the lack of benefits given to local coffee growers, thus a decline in local production. But recently, new light and hope has been given to the country's declining coffee industry.

The Haitian government, in partnership with Saint Thomas University, launched the Café COCANO Fair-Trade Coffee Project five years ago and has since been able to help boost Haiti's coffee market and assist local farmers in production and compensation. This project is also in partnership with the Cafeiere et Cacouyere du Nord' Ouest Coffee Cooperative, Pascucci Torrefazione, an Italian coffee roaster, and the University's Center for Peace and Justice.

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Tipping is a Cultural practice

Tipping is a customary practice in most countries. The restaurant industry has set a range of percentages they feel are correct for tipping whether you in the U.S., Canada and why not in Haiti . For satisfactory service it is 15% of the sum of the bill. Above that means service was good to exceptional, up to 20%. Up to 25% indicates service was excellent.

If a wine steward has chosen you a wine that has made your dining experience enjoyable, either tip them directly or add it to the server's tip.

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Business Gift

In most of the business organizations, offering business gifts to clients, business associates, gifts to the board of directors and employees is a normal annual activity. A large number of log gifts too are offered for which every year, huge amounts are spent. This particular practice certainly has a positive aspect, due to which it's a popular activity. Business gifts prove to be an effective tool in marketing, advertising, a token of appreciation and effective communication.

Even goodwill can be best built by offering gifts in business. One of the seasons most favored by business for gifting is the Christmas season or any other popular festival depending upon the country. Some of the common business gifts are calculators with the engraved logo of the company, pens, clocks, calendars, knives, stationery sets, diaries for the New Year, liquor, watches, glassware, dry fruit, photo albums, decorations for Christmas, stuffed animals and smoked salmon, Christmas angels, puzzles, chocolates, thermos bottles, travel packs, etc.

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Human Trafficking a 32 Billion Dollars Industry

A United Nations report on human trafficking reveals the shocking scope and severity of the problem.

Figures state approximately 2.5 million of the world's population is recruited into forced labor in any given time frame. Of this number, 1.4 million are in South Asia. Overall, 80% of them are used in sexual slavery and 17% in forced labor. The industry of human trafficking yields $32 billion yearly.

Human traffickers claim jobs are available in a given field, often placing classifieds tempting young and desperate women. Once there, they will be forced into prostitution, or sold as sexual slaves to third parties. The age of most human trafficking victims ranges from late teens into mid-twenties.

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Comme Il Faut, The One And Only Cigarette Maker

Compagnie des Tabacs Comme II Faut, S.A. is a major tobacco producer in Haiti. In fact, it is the only maker of cigarette in the country, where it markets its premium product brands Comme il Faut and Point. Luckett, Inc. founded the company in 1927 and since then, it has been recognized for producing customized and private label brands.

While Comme il Faut achieved success all throughout the years, it was not only focused on producing tobacco and generating sales. It also made contributions to society, especially to the music industry. Comme il Faut is one of the major sponsors of various musicians, including Djakout Mizik, Gracia Delva, and Mizik Mizik. Kreyol La has also received support from the company.

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Leopard Capital Gives Haiti its First Private Equity Fund

Leopard Capital has inked a deal with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to set up the first private equity fund to re-energize Haitian small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs) wiped out by the 2010 earthquake.

With a goal of securing $40 to $75 million to re-capitalize Haitian businesses, the Leopard Haiti Fund (LHF) has attracted $20 million in funding from three development banks: IFC, LHF's senior partner, has invested $8.5 million; the Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO) $8.5 million; and Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) $3.0 million.

LHF will pour financing into four potential-growth areas: food manufacturing, sustainable energy, tourism, and low-income housing. The bulk of LHF's financial resources will help already-open businesses grow by re-capitalizing operations and restoring structural damage. A portion of LHF's investment funds will support SMEs and new businesses.

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HASCO And Its Past Operations In Haiti

Haitian American Sugar Company, SA (HASCO) was one of the largest refineries in Haiti. It operated from 1912 to 1987, making it the country's oldest sugar refinery at that time. HASCO was an American business venture aimed at producing and selling sugar and other sweet products in Haiti, as well as in the United States. It was owned by Charles Steinham, Franck Copay and John Christie, who registered the company with $5 million in capital.

HASCO's operation in Haiti was not always smooth. As a matter of fact, it was affected by a political turmoil in the country in 1915. Like other American businesses in the country, HASCO reeled from the effects of the country's political challenges. Such challenges posed danger to foreign ventures in the country and it was believed to have been the cause of the U.S. marine invasion in 1915. The U.S. occupation lasted for 19 years.

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Micro-Lending Program a First for Businesswomen in Haiti

In the Central Plateau town of Hinche, Prime Minister (PM) Laurent Lamothe and Minister Yanick Mézile of Women's Affairs and Rights (WAR) implemented the micro-lending program, Pink Credit for Local Women (PCLW), which will disburse modest loans to small businesswomen in rural regions of Haiti.

Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe listed the objectives of the micro-lending program: empower women economically, erase the stigma of poverty assigned them, and offer encouragement their lives can be improved.

Government of Haiti (GOH) President Martelly, an advocate of small businesswomen, has spoken out about the effects of micro-lending on struggling, rural female-owned businesses. He emphasizes the financial support given by the micro-lending program will allay many fears women experience in providing for themselves and their families.

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