NEDD and Development Bank conduct successful financial management workshop

BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS (June 17, 2013) — The Caribbean Development Bank-sponsored four-day national workshop on ‘Financial Management Techniques for Macro, Small, and Medium-sized Enterprises’ held last week at the Ocean Terrace Inn and attended by 25 participants has been hailed a success.

Mr Philip Browne, Business Development Officer, National Entrepreneurial Development Division (NEDD) in the Ministry of International Trade, Industry, Commerce& Consumer Affairs, has said that the workshop which NEDD co-hosted with the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis had met its objectives.

Workshop facilitator, Mr Leon Natta (standing to the back) with the participants

“The workshop was really intended for persons who are involved in business operations at a level where they interact with the financial activities of their organisations,” said Mr Browne. “It was to bring some skills and knowledge to them, so that they can implement some of these things when they go back to their businesses to operate their finances etc.”

The workshop was facilitated by Mr Leon Natta, an accountant at the Customs and Excise. Last year he was sponsored by the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis to attended a Train the Trainer Workshop in various technical disciplines which provided basic technical challenges to Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs). The Barbados workshop had been organised by the Caribbean Technological Consultancy Service Network.

“We are happy and we are confident that this is in fact the right direction to go,” said Mr Browne. “We have been able to get the attention of the Caribbean Development Bank in terms of their assisting us with financing these trainings. They have committed to several other training sessions and so we will be staging similar sessions in the very near future.”

Ms Cynthia Duncan receives her certificate from Mr Natta. Others in the picture are from left, Mr David Fox of the Development Bank, Mr Philip Browne of NEDD, and Ms Jasmine Primus (right) of the Development Bank

According to Mr Browne, the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis, which he described as an offspring of the Caribbean Development Bank, has in the spirit of collaboration and in the spirit of networking worked well with NEDD. The Ministry, he added, has always collaborated with, and complemented the activities of the Development Bank.

“The bank in itself is one of those agencies that would assist with financing for developmental purposes for small businesses,” noted Mr Browne. “While we do not do financing at NEDD, what we do is ensure that we provide the technical guidance and assistance so that persons can go to the Development Bank among other financial institutions.

“But because of the nature of the Development Bank’s activities, in terms of their financing and their focus on developmental projects we work very closely with them. So in this case, they would have been even coordinating some of the participants. A number of the bank’s clients would have been given priority treatment in terms of an invitation to this particular training session.”

Workshop participants and facilitators pose for a group picture at the end of the workshop on June 13

Workshop’s co-host, and Head of the Business Support Unit at the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis, Mr Shavon Douglas, while addressing the participants at the workshop’s closing ceremony advised that to capitalise on the country’s little market space they need to come together, have networks, and pool resource and that would help to reduce overheads and operating expenses.

“It is going to become of critical importance for us to network. Come together and work as a unit,” said Mr Douglas. “Businesses as you would have realised are a challenge, and there is no one hard and fast way getting out of the challenges. Challenges should not stop you from moving in your related fields. Failure should not be a deterrent.

“Each time you are not successful, it is a successful way of how not to do what it is that you were doing. Rise above the challenges and find another way of doing what it is that you love to do.”

The four-day workshop was opened on Monday June 10 by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of International Trade, Industry, Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Mr Charleton Edwards. At the closing ceremony on Thursday June 13, participants were presented with individual certificates by among others, Mr David Fox, Development Bank’s Manager, Credit Risk Management Unit.

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