New initiative to assist Caribbean companies enter Europe

The newly formed Caribbean Chamber of Commerce in Europe (CCCE) is set to be launched soon, offering Caribbean-based companies an alternative gateway to the continent at a time Britain proceeds its exit from the European Union (EU).

CCCE says it will promote trade and commerce between the wider Caribbean and the United Kingdom/Europe and attract European investment to strengthen the Caribbean economy. It has given no specific date for the launch.

Trade and business observers say the CCCE joins the cluster of chambers of commerce based at Brussels Enterprises Commerce and Industry (BECI) expands the scope of CCCE’s network and widens its base, enabling it to operate effectively from the European Union’s capital.

The fourth Caribbean Forum-European Union Business Forum (CARIFORUM-EU Business Forum), held in Germany last September, had identified the need for an independent, non-politically aligned, private sector body to provide market information and logistical support for business development in Europe.

Officer-in-Charge of the Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export), Anthony Bradshaw, said: “it will strengthen business networks and foster a closer trade and investment relationship between the Caribbean and the EU.”

The launch of CCCE is timely and with the UK’s departure from the EU, the new chamber in Brussels offers an alternative springboard to London, in particular for Caribbean Community (CARICOM)-based ventures, into a more diverse European market.

In the build-up to its official launch, the Chamber is reaching out to other regional and trade organizations and is planning to work with major public and private stakeholders on both sides of the Atlantic, who can build the partnerships needed to foster Euro-Caribbean trade and commerce.