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TTCSI Project Seeks To Add $.75B In Export Revenue


The Trinidad and Tobago Coalition of Services Industries announced that it has embarked on a project which is seeking to add some $.75B in export revenue to the country within the next five years. The project, which is being funded by the Commonwealth Secretariat, will result in comprehensive strategic action plans for export of health, education and yachting services and will also provide advice for the export of architectural and engineering services.

The sectors were chosen following an initial ‘scoping’ mission by the team of consultants earlier this year. Their preliminary findings indicate that a target of an increase in export revenue of just under $.75B is realistic for these sectors, which offer great potential for short to medium term growth.
“Too many times studies just sit on shelves and collect dust. We hope that by partnering with stakeholders to collect the data and implement the action plans, this project can be different. Three quarter billion additional dollars in revenue is no small amount and we at the TTCSI believe that by developing these sectors, we are working toward meaningful economic diversification,” said TTCSI CEO Nirad Tewarie.
“The services industries offer the best opportunity to achieve this meaningful diversification but also sustainable streams of income. As we develop the range of services, across industries which we offer right here in Trinidad and Tobago, we provide opportunities for locals to stay at home and realize their dreams. Equally as important, we are creating the conditions for local who may have gone abroad in search of opportunities to come back home and share their expertise in a dynamic, fulfilling environment, thereby reversing the brain drain through brain circulation,” added Tewarie.
TTCSI President, Rabindra Jaggernauth said the initiative shows the tangible work that TTCSI is doing to develop the services sector. The TTCSI President said while much is being done to improve the business environment, there are many cross cutting issues which need to be dealt with to make it easier to do business in Trinidad and Tobago.

“High on the list of priorities is the passage of the Exchequers and Audit Act and the full launch of the TTBizLink platform,” said Jaggernauth. He also called on the Government to “consider the specific needs of smaller businesses and entrepreneurs,” as smaller businesses often face difficulty in dealing with some of the issues which larger organisations are able to ameliorate due to their size.

Picking up on the need for a collective approach to business development, the principal consultant on the project, Mark Hellyer of CTA Economic & Export Analysts Ltd argued that “its about information and raising the profile. Services are referred to in the trade world as invisible, there is lots going on despite that. With the TTCSI dedicated to the development of the services sector, work like sector surveys and case studies can access the voice on the ground. The guy next door is already doing it so it’s really not that difficult,” said Hellyer.
The groundwork has already started. Commonwealth Secretariat representative Estella Aryada noted, “partnership is key
at all levels within the industry both with government and private sector to achieving success.” She stressed that the Commonwealth Secretariat believes the potential for the development of the identified sectors is quite high and that they are committed to supporting the process.
The project is now in its second stage and will seek to develop comprehensive sector profiles and baseline data to gather a better understanding of the exact activities taking place in the sectors as well as specific opportunities for growth and constraints faced by service providers. This phase of the project is expected to come to an end in September and will result in the presentation of sector specific strategies and detailed action plans for the identified sectors.
For further information, please contact the TTCSI Secretariat