Attempts to nurture the manufacturing sector in Dominica

McKenzie is worried over the lack of interest in manufacturing in Dominica
McKenzie is worried over the lack of interest in manufacturing in Dominica

Due to the lack of interest in the manufacturing in Dominica, an initiative has been launched to get young people interested in that sector.

The “Buy Something to Sell” competition focuses on productivity, creativity and innovation and allows young people to have an outlet to showcase their ideas and talent.

Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday Public Relations Officer of the Dominica Manufacturers Association (DMA), Severin McKenzie, revealed that the lack of interest in the manufacturing sector is of major concern to the organization.

“We are looking to encourage people to participate in the manufacturing sector and this is why we came up with the idea of the ‘Make Something to Sell,’ which actually is a follow up to the first initiative that we came up with which was the Buy Dominica Campaign,” he stated.

According to him with the Buy Dominica Campaign, which was launched about two years ago, concentration was placed on products that already existed. However, with this new initiative, people will be encouraged to introduce new products.

“We are trying to get particularly the young people to be interested in the manufacturing sector,” he noted. “We are also interested in this initiative because we are concerned about our import/export bill. Dominica imports about $600-million a year and we only export about $80-million which is a trade imbalance of over $500-million.”

One participant, Magalie Telemacque, said she is excited about the initiative.

Telemacque produces ginger biscuits using a family recipe.

“I’m very interested and I’m really looking forward now that I’m hearing how far this thing is going,” she stated. “I’m really looking forward to see how far I can get in this competition and maybe even win this competition. I’m looking forward to the testing, the packaging and even working with the Dominica Manufacture’s Association in making this viable and even seeing it on the shelf.”

The Make Something to Sell competition is slated for August 12th to August 14th, 2014.

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  1. T'dad Blue Waters
    July 6, 2014

    I am now Dominica, are you still? lol!

  2. DD
    July 4, 2014

    As I have stated prior, what is preached publicly is not what is done in private. I have drafted several proposals for Dominica. There has been no interest or follow up by the necessary people in Dominica. The politicians are crooked. It has come to the point where i am now holding off on investing in Dominica. Its a shame. MAYBE ONE DAY DNO WILL POST MY STORY!!

  3. Morihei Ueshiba
    July 4, 2014

    Dominica manufacturing took a nose dive when Roosevelt Skerrit of thibaud became prime minister of Dominica.

  4. Practitioner
    July 4, 2014

    There is no ‘lack of interest in manufacturing in Dominica’ among young people. No.1. ELECTRICITY COST IS TOO HIGH TO MANUFACTURE PROFITS, especially for a young person with nothing looking to make a start in life.
    eg. A few years ago We embarked on a banana ripening project. Upon completion of the facility we did a production test, and in a single day $200 worth of electricity was our expense to Domlec only. With markets readily to purchase our entire daily supply of bananas we would still be operating at a loss.

    So tell me what would be the purpose continuing?


    • July 4, 2014

      Why would you ripen bananas for export or local consumption?

  5. winston warrington
    July 4, 2014

    What must be done to generate interest in manufacturing in Dominica? We can start identifying (list) the resources that can be transformed into marketable products. We are resource poor, and we better face it.
    Yet, we seem to adopt the position that once we have a product, packaging and marketing will make us competitive; that’s not all it takes. We are a very unreliable people.
    Products are tested by the FDA for 5 years to safeguard the welfare of the American consumer before allowed for sale in the US. During this period, many new businesses fail; but testing must be done to gauge the viability and safety of the product even if profits are sacrificed in the process. Can we afford to employ the local Bureau of Standards in this endeavor? Yes. Local first, and regional next should be the path that might lead to international recognition of our goods and services.
    But overall, I am astounded by the dearth of creativity in our society. If we must increase the manufacturing sector, certain challenges must be issued to test the skills of the youth in particular and business minded public in general.
    In the instance of loving roasted bread fruit, can someone design a small gadget like a rocket stove to make roasting bread fruit less laborious? Canning titiri for export? mosquito protective mesh clothing for the visitors? How about manufacturing cigars in Dominica instead of cigarettes? The above suggestions might not be feasible but only used here as a demonstration of the need to identify the resource in order to stimulate interest in the manufacturing industry.

    • Africo
      July 5, 2014

      ONCE UPON A TIME Dominica was the largest single producer of lime juice in the world, Dominica was the largest single producer of coffee in the Caribbean after Jamaica, Dominica exported tinned orange and grapefruit juice and orange segments under the DOMFRUIT label, Dominica was the largest exporter of vanilla in the Caribbean, Dominica was the grass mat production centre of the Caribbean, exporting mats to order for regional hotels and even further afield (the RC nuns who orgainised it gone and so Kai poul cwazay)….and lesser exports too numerous to mention.

      • winston warrington
        July 7, 2014

        “Once upon a time”. We need to get past nostalgia and direct our energies toward resolution of our needs.

  6. Man on the Ground
    July 4, 2014

    Mr Mckenzie , were you and some of your govt big boy invited to the growth and strategic workshop that was put together by the business heads together with team Dominica t the fort young hotel this year. Sir every sector in Dominica were delt with at length , to come here today al alone with your myopic views on the way forward for the manufacturing sector in this bless land today i belive its a shame. We can only build Dominica collectively, all minds must be on board , that one man showmanship that has been insteel on you from lord skerro will never work , shame shame shame on you and your gang.

  7. A Valley Man
    July 4, 2014

    Dominica boast to the world that it is the Nature Isle of the world with 365 Rivers with the best water quality, yet we are going to promote to the world during the T20 West Indies and New Zealand Cricket matches that Blue water from Trinidad is the Best Water to buy and to drink, while our Loubriere bottle water are brushed aside. Ironically the bottlers of Loubiere of water are co sponsors of the matches with Kubli Beer. Could that ever happen in Trindad? things are really upside down in Dominica. Mr Mackensie this speaks for itself as far as manufacturing is concern .

  8. Zanndoli
    July 3, 2014

    Dominica’s manufacturing sector lost interest since in the 90’s when they found that no matter what they produce, it can be imported cheaper.

    • JoJo
      July 4, 2014

      Unfortunately you are right. Imported best quality Italian olive oil is much cheaper than our locally produced coconut oil. Go figure.

  9. NEEDY!!!!!
    July 3, 2014

    This is like someone working for $1 and spending $7.50.

    How can you grow economically under these conditions.

    This GOVT needs to go!!!!!!!!!

  10. Malgraysa
    July 3, 2014

    Good luck Severin. You have your work cut out. Right now, for the cricket matches the Windsor Park Stadium will be promoting bottled water from Trinidad exclusively instead of our own. To be seen on T.V. screens worldwide no doubt! You get the feeling that Govt.’s left hand does not know what its right hand is doing and I really feel sorry for the people at Invest Dominica

  11. PetProjects
    July 3, 2014

    Lord have mercy on us.. Dominicans wake up!! Skerrit Killing Dominica. :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry:
    A vote for Skerrit is a vote for Tony Astaphans.
    Skerrit just call the Elections lets get rid of you & Tony ….

    • Zanndoli
      July 3, 2014

      Ask the By-Trini boys what caused them to stop manufacturing jeans in the 70’s

      • I want to know 2
        July 3, 2014

        ASk the Q95 Investgative Journalist turn Politician he would know better. & why Nassief sold DCP to Colgate Palmolive.

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