‘Transforming Agriculture through Innovation and Investment’. This was the official theme chosen for the second CARICOM Agri-Investment Forum & Expo held at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Trinidad between August 19th to 21st, 2022. Following the success of Guyana’s Agri-Investment Forum & Expo held in May 2022, this 3-day event was part of a continued commitment initiated by the Heads of CARICOM, to reduce the region’s large food import bill by 25% by 2025.
The 3-day event commenced with a Forum on August 19th, 2022, held at the National Academy for Performing Arts (NAPA) from 9:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. where Regional Heads of States presented perspectives and awareness into strategies and potential solutions geared toward improving the region’s food production capacity and output. The Prime Minister, Dr the Honourable Keith Rowley stated these events present “the best opportunity we have to commit ourselves to solving a problem that is looming large and looming dangerously”, as he called on the private sector to get more involved by being distributors of local products/produce rather than be the commission agent of imported produce as he stated, referring to the strategic initiative panned out by CARICOM Heads.
The event was deemed successful as numerous patrons visited ADB’s corporate booth to enquire about its products and services, to obtain further information on their agri projects, and even participate in its ‘Spin the Wheel’ game which encouraged a learning approach to test patrons’ knowledge of the ADB and its offerings. The Bank’s presentation included a mini pavilion, an area for discussions with prospects interested in potential agri-business projects and physical displays from clients. All activities were designed to highlight the important role the Bank plays in the sector while stimulating interest in same and recognizing the ADB as the financial institution of choice for agricultural support.