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  • LINKAGE EDITION 2/2017

    1992-2017

    YEARS

    1992-2017

    YEARS

    IN THIS ISSUE: CEO’s Perspective: Nicholas Lok Jack, Associated Brands Limited

    AACCLA at 50 AMCHAM T&T Budget Recommendations

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  • 4 AMCHAM T&T LINKAGE Edition 2 / 2017

    I n 1992 the American Chamber of Commerce of Trinidad & Tobago formally opened its doors to advocate for free and fair trade within T&T and the Americas.

    In the past 25 years, we have developed new products and services. We have experimented with different means of communication. We have grown stronger and, most of all, we have remained focused on always striving to provide more and more benefits to members. That has always and will always be our main goal.

    As we reflect though, we realise that twenty-five years is an important milestone and one which should be celebrated. In 25 years, the world has changed rapidly. The next 25 will herald many more changes. A recent PriceWaterhouseCoopers study predicts that by 2050, three of the world’s ten largest economies will be in the Americas, with Mexico and Brazil joining the USA in that elite club. Yet, we are not as integrated with the economies of our neighbours as we should be. AMCHAM T&T, through the network of our 50-year old ‘big-brother’ the Association of American Chambers of Commerce of Latin America and the Caribbean (AACCLA), provides that access, so take advantage of it.

    FOCUS ON TRADE AND INVESTMENT

    It is for this reason, AMCHAM T&T consistently focuses on trade and investment. In this issue we touch on some of the trade issues within the Americas as we acknowledge that there is a changing trade dynamic that must be closely monitored to maximise emerging opportunities. While we must continue our outward thrust we must also continue to nurture our existing relations - especially those within CARICOM. It is in this

    vein that we held discussions with the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica and the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce to initiate plans of further integration and opportunities within the CARICOM market. You can view more on this initiative on page 16.

    The awe of the first text message has long been replaced with numerous advancements in digital and mobile phone technology. Digital technology is no longer viewed as a separate industry, but it is now the vital element that is shaping all other industries. On page 18 we look at digital transformation and the importance for all leaders in government and business to take a look at how we can use this to get ahead in global trade. If not, we will be left behind.

    PARTICIPATION AND PARTNERSHIP

    Before I close I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to all our members. We know the economic challenges that many of you are facing and we pledge to continue to work with you and advocate on your behalf on areas of critical economic importance. On page 31 you will also find an abridged version of the budget recommendations we submitted to the Ministry of Finance for 2017-2018. I urge you to review (you can view the full document on our website) and send us your feedback. As the past 25 years have shown, participation and partnership are the hallmarks of growth and success.

    WELCOME

    Nirad Tewarie CEO, AMCHAM T&T

    We pledge to continue to work with you and advocate on your behalf on areas of critical economic importance.

  • AMCHAM T&T LINKAGE Edition 2 / 2017 5

    4 Welcome AMCHAM T&T CEO, Nirad Tewarie

    6 Viewpoint Mitchell De Silva

    20 Cyber Threats: Managing Risks and Responsibility by Rodney Farah

    21 AMCHAM T&T Upcoming Events

    23 AMCHAM T&T Trade & Investment Committee

    24 How the Illegal Drugs Trade Affects Caribbean Business by the AMCHAM T&T Security Committee

    27 Achieving Sustainable Health Solutions: PAHO Foundation/ AMCHAM T&T Partnership

    29 Legislation to Watch by A. Bruce

    31 AMCHAM T&T Budget Recommendations

    32 Listen. Really Listen by Dale Laughlin

    34 Disaster Preparedness Workshop

    35 Business Future of the Americas

    AMCHAM T&T'S NEW BOARD

    AMCHAM T&T'S 25TH ANNIVERSARY

    AMCHAM T&T BUDGET RECOMMENDATIONS

    10

    36

    31

    CONTENTS

    LINKAGE

    AMCHAM Trinidad & Tobago 62 Maraval Road, Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. Tel: (868) 622-4466 / 0340 / 628-2508 Fax: (868) 628-9428 Website: www.amchamtt.com Find us on social media: Facebook, LinkedIn and Youtube

    ISSN 1814-1242 Design & Layout: Paria Publishing Co. Ltd. Printing: Caribbean Print Technologies Ltd.

    The opinions expressed in the editorial contributions in Linkage may not necessarily be those of AMCHAM T&T. We welcome any comments you might have! Simply email a “Letter to the Editor” to the AMCHAM T&T Secretariat to [email protected]

    AMCHAM T&T’S VISION As The Pathway To The Americas, AMCHAM T&T is focussed on the stimulation and promotion of trade, investment and export oriented growth in the Western Hemisphere.

    AMCHAM T&T’S MISSION

    AMCHAM T&T will add value to our member companies within the following key focus areas:

    • Enhancement of Competitiveness • Generation of New Business and Market Access for Services/Goods • Influence on Policies and Legislation • Transfer of Knowledge • Contribution to Sustainable Development

    36 Yeehah! AMCHAM T&T Celebrates 25 Years

    38 Girl Be Heard: Focus on the Arts by Arianna Herbert

    38 Networking Protocol: Small Talk, Big Links

    1992-2017

    YEARS

    8 Going Global Nicholas Lok Jack, Associated Brands Industries

    10 AMCHAM T&T: Our New Board

    12 AACCLA at 50 by Nicholas Galt

    13 AMCHAM T&T at 25

    14 Balance of Trade by A. Bruce

    16 Jamaica/Trinidad & Tobago: We Jammin'

    18 The 4th Industrial Revolution: Digital Transformation by Francisca Hector

    CEO'S PERSPECTIVE: NICHOLAS LOK JACK8

  • 6 AMCHAM T&T LINKAGE Edition 2 / 2017

    VIEWPOINT

    W hen I first joined Amcham T&T some 15 years or so ago, I came with no set expectations of the organisation, nor did I have a sense of what the

    organisation expected of me.

    Since that time, I am delighted to say, that the latter has become that much clearer! AMCHAM T&T and all BSOs to me are a means via which one can apply skills and knowledge gained from experiences over time to the benefit of the collective (our membership, the wider private sector, Labour, Government, Civil Society). That to me is the essence of who and what we are.

    I have been privileged not only to see the organisation’s growth, transformation and impact in the area of trade and investment, but now I get to be an integral part of that process as I take on my new role as your President. I will like to start by saying that I am both humbled and honoured to be given the opportunity to serve as AMCHAM T&T’s President for the 2017-2018 term.

    INCREASED UNCERTAINTY ABOUT THE U.S.

    Five years ago the Board of Directors of AMCHAM T&T decided to refine the strategic direction of the organisation. At that time we believed that the world was on the cusp of economic and social change, and the exponential impact of technology on business was at its tipping point. We re -examined our outlook, re-tailored our value proposition, and re-positioned the organisation as The Pathway of the Americas. This position seeks to leverage the advantage of our relationship and reach afforded to us as part of the AACCLA Network (American Chambers of Commerce of Latin America and the Caribbean).

    This network, I believe, will prove invaluable as it may provide insight into the inner workings of a system that now carries a fundamental level of uncertainty. The election of US President Donald Trump may or may not have come to the surprise of many, however, regardless of what side of the political divide you stand, we must now move forward as we would do with any other President that has had the honour of being elected.

    Mitchell De Silva President, AMCHAM T&T

    President Trump has confirmed his intention to reexamine the country’s trading relationships, as part of his “America First” doctrine, thereby creating the appearance that the United States is intent on pulling away from global arrangements where there is a perceived and perhaps real bias against the US. While this approach has been welcomed by some in the U.S. business and agriculture communities,the rest of the world remains wary and apprehensive of what these negotiations mean for global trade. We view our access