Proposal presented to gov’t for transport of agricultural produce overseas

Former PM Seraphin is in negotiation with the government
Former PM Seraphin is in negotiation with the government

Former Prime Minister of Dominica and Chairman of the Louisana-based, Global Shipping Corporation, Oliver Seraphin, has presented the government of Dominica with a proposal to transport agricultural produce to the island’s trading partners.

A container ship, American Liberty, valued at US$1.2-million, is currently docked in Dominica while Seraphin negotiates with the government on the proposal.

The ship can hold up to two refrigerated 40-foot containers, or four 20-foot containers, has roll-on/roll-off technology for movement of cargo, and contains sleeping quarters for eight persons.

The corporation seeks to facilitate the movement of agricultural produce between Dominica and its export partners.

“We have offered the government of Dominica a business plan conceptually to do a marketing strategy for carrying the agricultural produce from farmers here to the respective territories, for which they have contractual obligations,” Seraphin told Dominica News Online during a visit to the ship. “We have given the government of Dominica an offer, that they could join forces with us, as a private-public sector partnership. That offer… it’s our priority.”

The process, he explained, could be of great use to the government, especially now that an abbatoir is set to open, for which the government will require imported resources. Food for the animals, for example, can be obtained from the Dominican Republic, which is part of the ship’s route, Seraphin explained.

“We anticipate that we will be doing the area from Dominica’s north, as far as up to the Virgin Islands (BVI), and particularly, the Dominican Republic,” he stated. “We have already entered into the discussions and negotiations with merchants that have products that they would move from the Dominica Republic, including the government that has now the abattoir, they would need feed, which we could obtain from that area as well.”

However, Seraphin noted that the corporation does not wish to compete with local forms of export for their traditional routes. In fact, he stated that the ship wishes to transport cargo along the lesser-travelled routes to areas like the Virgin Islands and Trinidad.

“We are particularly conscious of the fact that there are a number of local ship owners, especially from Portsmouth, and we have absolutely no intention of competing with them with their traditional routes,” he explained. “What we are expecting to do would be to supplement what is required, by giving a sophisticated level of quality shipping, particularly to the U.S.V.I. and B.V.I., and Santo Domingo, etcetera. And, also, our ports… are not in competition at all to the local cargo industry, because we believe that we’re not here to threaten their livelihood. We’re here to add comfort to the farmers’ produce, and to give them an exit for the agricultural produce externally.”

Despite a positive response to the offer from Prime Minster, Roosevelt Skerrit, discussions with the government are ongoing, Seraphin noted.

“At this time, discussions are ongoing. The Prime Minister has indicated his positive communication with us that they are prepared to work with our effort, as Dominica had wanted a boat for some years and now they have one,” Seraphin concluded.

Gloria Tavernier/Network Trading Inc. was named as the local agent for Global Shipping Corporation.

A vessel for transporting agricultural produce has been discussed by the government for years now.

As recently as May 14, 2o15 Minister for Trade, Ian Douglas, said that a vessel to export Dominica’s agricultural produce is no pie in the sky promise.

In October 2013, the government announced that it was in contact with a group of vessel operators to determine all the issues to be considered in acquiring a vessel primarily for transporting Dominica’s agricultural commodities.

At a press conference on Monday, October 21st, 2013, Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit said that the availability of a cargo vessel will enable hucksters and companies involved in the trade of agricultural goods to take advantage of markets in the south of the Caribbean.

However, it appears none of these efforts have come to fruition.

See photos from the ship below.

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53 Comments

  1. Real Truth
    February 26, 2016

    To Mr. Oliver Seraphin,
    Please provide your contact information. I have a possible deal for you….. I also have a lot of questions relative to shipping goods out of Dominica etc. Thank You.

  2. Ohhoo
    February 26, 2016

    I think this is a good idea especially to the Bvi and smaller islands . However I don’t see the point of taking produce from Dominica to sell in The Dominican Republic. Hello Dominican Republic has millions of farms ,bigger than The entire islands of Dominica , so to suggest bringing produce to DR is not profitable. Food is cheap in DR. Where I see the benefit though , is to bring in merchandise from the DR to Dominica. Yes this is where someone could be a millionaire overnight. Buy in pesos and sell in US or Ec. One can import allot of goods from the DR , including , fertilizer, chicken feed. Agricultural chemicals ,pesticides, and other dry goods . There is a lot we can benefit from DR.
    There are also lots of cargo ships in DR waiting to transport the goods
    $15,000.00 US a voyage.
    So grab the idea, so people can get cheap and good goods.
    Expect. The local merchants to block this. Quiero 2 cajas de leche
    Ha ha their will be no competition , Good luck Brother , grocery…

  3. Crab and Manicou Hunter
    February 25, 2016

    “Lead the way brother O.J. lead the way.”

  4. UDOHREADYET
    February 25, 2016

    Its good idea but has to be thought out alot more. The market prices for the various products has to be determined by whom? who are the buyers? what would be the contractual terms for the sellers and buyers?, apparently it seems that the ship owner wants to be the broker between the two. The concept of exporting agricultural produce regionally has alot of merit.
    It cant hurt to try, though I would ask for a 5 year and 10 year plan, as well as who will be responsible for the insurance and maintenance of the ship as well as the cost of docking in foreign ports.

  5. Anonymous
    February 25, 2016

    Oj stop wasting your time this government is not interested
    In agriculture is passport they selling black is white so wheel and come again

  6. truth
    February 25, 2016

    0J CANT BE TRUSTER, HAVE he ever expressed his dissatisfaction with this government/ no

  7. exporting Bitcoin?
    February 25, 2016

    O.J. Seraphine just drop a BITCOIN thing on Dominica, secret stuff, until the patriots revealed the scam and the guinea-pig experiment with our beautiful country.

    Remember, the action had to be in the Stadium, “Bitcoin Stadium.”. A DR. Darroux, up to now, moo-moo about that Bitcoin foolishness, although he was tagged, photos to prove with Bitcoin official. All now, big Bitcoin guys in serious problems with law enforcement.

    Where are the boats to transport agricultural goods to Barbados? Didn’t Skerritt mention boats, exports of crops to Barbados? Really, with the extremely, dismal state of agriculture and the impoverishment of the farmers, what crops or value-added products from agricultural crops, do we have to export? Be real?

  8. Not a herd follower
    February 25, 2016

    For this to be successful, Dominica’s agricultural output must increase manifold. Good luck, Mr. O.J. Seraphine

    • Bwa Bwa
      February 26, 2016

      Put Haitians to work… lol

  9. February 25, 2016

    Let’s see if the government really want to create jobs and export to markets

  10. Real
    February 25, 2016

    Some ppl just complaining bout OJ was the one behind bitcoin like it was a bad thing. I dare some of you to google bitcoin 2016 and find out 4 there selves. Look japan want to make it a legal currency or are we smarter and better off than japan.In September, several big names in finance and banking invested in the bitcoin startup Chain. This included Nasdaq, Citi Ventures, Capital One Financial, and Visa. 1 bitcoin is 423.3 USD and i think, i’m not sure but if every thing went through as planned we Dominicans would recieve 16 bit coins on our phone. Well we better off now lol

  11. educator
    February 25, 2016

    Seems the knowledge. bit coin is a digital currency which li is accepted globally. Remains a. Mystery to Dominicans.
    Seem as usual OJ is ahead of his time….
    Please will readers do their own research…. Googlee. Inquire read…
    OJ. Keep doing whilst others talk.,….

  12. Real
    February 25, 2016

    Alot of stupid ppl just complaing bout OJ was behind bitcoin like it was a bad thing.
    I dare some

  13. good
    February 25, 2016

    The man Francisco does not know that there is DEXIA and Dapex and Domimica Fair Trade and the Hucksters association as well as manufacturers and importation of feed and inputs for agriculture… What hole is Francisco hiding from the real world of Dominica
    Thamks O.j

    • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
      February 27, 2016

      Well since you have all of those which seems to be some marketing company in Dominica; and I am in a hole and (doh) know anything; can you please enlighten me, by identifying one single island in the Caribbean from Jamaica in the North, to Guyana on the South American continent, and anything in between.

      Let us go north and south of Cuba all the way to Jacksonville Florida tell me where your selling marketing company’s in Dominica have a signed contract with any market to buy Dominica agricultural produce!

      As usual you all have everything in Dominica, you have the best the rest of the world is behind Dominica, however, more than 99% of the nation exists in poverty!

      Explain to me the reason for this high volume people existing in poverty, it appears as though we are going back into the era of hunters, and gathers!

  14. give praise
    February 25, 2016

    Francisco !!!!!!each time he speaks he confirms the existence that he competes with the animal farm ….?The government have said they need a boat ..OJ bought one ..for 3 years that is the talk. ..now it is here This mam delivered
    whilst others write and talk….
    Do the farmers need a boat?

  15. give praise
    February 25, 2016

    Great effort

  16. give praise
    February 25, 2016

    OJ thank u …….whilst others talk you produce. How long government speak of boat u bring one down for the farmers.
    I remember the Green lantern best biggest night club of the day at deep water harbor. I remember Dominica Airway’s 30 seat aircrafts
    I remember Dominique Aircraft
    I remember the million dollar White Seal fishing deep sea boat
    I remember the MV Rigel. Large cargo boat lost during hurricane David
    Remember Floral Gardens …best eco inn with awards. Taken by government for road expansions
    You are the man

  17. Lang Mama
    February 25, 2016

    Farmers boat is here . What a marvelous double gift – a Doctorate and a Refrigerate.
    On a serious note I do hope that this proposal be given some legs cause the economy is really really bad.

    Thanks to Doctor Corrupt

  18. uwpenez
    February 25, 2016

    man go and get had wk fo you to do

  19. February 25, 2016

    O.J Dominica is in need of you,i have no idea what are you willing to do in the future but i looks like the country is sinking from bad to worse..

  20. BIG BIG BOAT
    February 25, 2016

    wait awhile, allu serious… when skerrit spoke anbout boats a long time ago we had a surplus of provisions, now what we have we cannot even supply the three main vessels in portsmouth allu coming with a big boat to ship where. as long as skerrit continue to give his supporters alone the imputs then we will continue to go down the drain.

  21. DRASTIC
    February 25, 2016

    OJ…….take your boat some place else where people are serious. Sure you know those guys in government are just “wearing the uniforms” of your once beloved Labour party

  22. Doc. Love
    February 25, 2016

    That man OJ again. In the seventies, the man was involved with an out of town insurance company which wanted to insure Dominicans from the cradle to the grave, after receiving many clients, it just disappeared. The man was Prime Minister and leader of DemLab, a Political Party, when election came around, he could not even win his own seat . It is alleged, the man was the main architect behind BitCoin, that too just disappeared. Now we are hearing about Global Shipping Cooperation, I hope Skeritt knows what the hell he is doing, but again Skeritt is so easily fooled, I would not be surprised OJ takes him for a ride in the deep blue Caribbean Sea.

  23. Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
    February 25, 2016

    “We have given the government of Dominica an offer, that they could join forces with us, as a private-public sector partnership. That offer… it’s our priority.”

    After reading all of the Dominica talk, I am left practically confused: even that in the quote seems to be garbage: This man has not identify any single market, or any company through out the United States, or elsewhere, nor any grocery chain willing to accommodate the buying of Dominica agricultural products.

    I criticize Skerrit a lot, but I would advise him not to get involve into this which I term nonsense, Agricultural products, such plantain, and Bananas, Tanya, cucumbers and such vegetables are sold in supermarkets, or grocery stores pineapples, mangoes ect. the yam and dashine I have not seen, so the presence of a ship alone does not guaranty a market for anything that will be loaded unto it. That is another phantom in the night idea. Why didn’t he do that when he was Prime Minister of Dominica?

    • Barbara Saunders
      February 25, 2016

      Mr. Telemaque

      Whenever he chooses to do it matters not! As a Dominican, he is trying something! At least he is not sitting on his derriere every single day of his life feeding on negativity and strife. Even if his project were to come to naught, he is trying like a patriotic Dominican should, to do something to improve the quality of life for himself and others.

      I firmly believe that if God himself were to come to people like you and say that He is going to do something for Dominica he would get a piece of the foul language and the hate that people like you post on this site everyday. You people are absolutely obnoxious!

      You have no idea how happy I am whenever I read the unwholesome, nauseating comments that you write (not to mention the awful grammar and spelling), that you are on the other side of the world and not in DA.

      • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
        February 26, 2016

        Barbara, feel free to call me Francisco, Francois, Son, or Etienne, that’s how I was called as a kid, since I came to Los Angeles, some people call me Frank, that one I do not for, but I prefer to be on a first name basics.

        You know Barbara, just because something sounds good does not mean it is a good thing. This man poops up with his idea: Where is the planning, where are markets, you do just go to buy a ship, brings it to Dominica and invite government to become involved simply because you give the government an option to become involve.

        He is talking about Louisiana: There are no public markets in Louisiana, or anywhere in the United States, where one can off load agricultural products and set up a stall and expect people to come to buy, and you lived in England I sure you have never seen any such thing because I lived in England and Germany and never saw any such thing.

        And to be honest with you depending on a place like Dominica to get a load of cargo, you might…

      • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
        February 26, 2016

        And to be honest with you depending on a place like Dominica to get a load of cargo, you might better fill it sea water. Been there done that. We brought a ship out of Denmark, of all the islands of the region, we never got any amount of cargo out of Dominica

      • Barbara Saunders
        February 29, 2016

        Francisco

        This is wonderful! You are actually having a reasonable discourse on the subject without cursing Dominica and Dominicans! I’m impressed! I actually got some of the points you are making. My beef with your initial comments was that you immediately knocked down the initiative like a rehearsed reflex action.

        If by exchange of blogs we can get people to think and express themselves reasonably then we have some hope.

        Cheers!

    • Oobin Wood
      February 25, 2016

      The produce will be consumed by the sailors on board this ship. This idea is incomplete. Mister seraphim, please go back to your drawing board. By the way, who owns this ship?

    • UDOHREADYET
      February 26, 2016

      Telemaque…. I seldom agree with you but in this case you make good sense.

    • Ralphie Alcendo, USA
      February 27, 2016

      O J can do all that without financial participation by the government. He can even register the boat in Dominica. He can broker deals with the farmers or work with the Marketing board. It is a great idea , but it should be strictly private sector activity. Looks like he is setting up the government

  24. water 99
    February 25, 2016

    that will be nice lets pray for it to work out.

  25. Lead singer
    February 25, 2016

    Bit coin again dressed in a different uniform

  26. My Way
    February 25, 2016

    OJ would be better off proposing to the government an interim plan similar to the 1979 one, to deliver Dominica from the mess that Skerrit put Dominica in.

  27. February 25, 2016

    where is the produce you have to put more money in agriculture first.

  28. cameron
    February 25, 2016

    Former PM,i wish you luck with this corrupt government,they have to make sure they get some form of money in the in their pockets firs.Sad state of affairs in this corrupt country,

  29. CitizenKane
    February 25, 2016

    That would come in very handy..so now we can ship produce to Venezuela and we will be able to off set this against our petrol debt….all’s well that ends well.

  30. DomiChina
    February 25, 2016

    where did the 1.2M came from to buy this ship.
    four containers at 20 feet or two at 40 feet is no capacity for a shipment of cargo across international waters for the amount of produce that dominica would be able to grow and distribute.

  31. February 25, 2016

    Zero confidence in Skerrit, so this opportunity will pass by :-D

  32. lightbulb
    February 25, 2016

    big up private enterprise.
    what is exactly is DEXIA doing all these years???

  33. Benjah
    February 25, 2016

    According to some on here, this is all useless because “International market forces” will not allow it… :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: ….and do not forget the notorious “Economics of scale” :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

  34. Zandoli
    February 25, 2016

    I have always felt that the government had no business owning or operating any vessel to carry produced to the other islands. Have you seen how government employees treat government vehicles?

    I think they have a golden opportunity to negotiate the best shipping rates with these people and let them own and operate their ships.

    • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
      February 25, 2016

      Maybe sometimes I might say something nasty about you comments, but I totally agree with you that government should not get involve into any commercial business such as owning Ships, and airline which should be owned by private individual and entities.

      That sort of ownership only took place in communism, in the former soviet block, where the communists government owned everything even people; and even at that the shelves in the stores and Markets in the Soviet Union, and especially in Russia were always empty!

      We are experiencing the same thing in Venezuela operating under a system of socialism, which is a softer version of communism!

  35. Doctor of Corruption
    February 25, 2016

    OJ and Skerrit? They are two of a kind and I don’t trust them. They will come in the name of agriculture but I feel there could really be another agenda. OJ was one of the guys behind that bitcoin.

    If OJ is serious about what he says, then tell him to help us put this corrupt government out legally, so a right atmosphere will be created and our young people will be encouraged to go back to the farms. Right now the only thing we are known to be shipping is drugs and all eyes are on everything that comes out of DA

    • Dominican
      February 25, 2016

      You scared for UWP we lol

    • Oobin Wood
      February 25, 2016

      I agree with you 100%. These two join together is chaos :twisted:

  36. eyes to see
    February 25, 2016

    lets see….

    1. it can also be used to move all this drugs that we have in the country (need to get that off shore).

    2. get all this money that our diplomats have in these partner countries into our country to boost the economy.

    3. i think many other dominicans have ideas… because we dont have the production capacity to supply 20 containers when we cannot even fill your basket in the market….

    my suggestion… develop the industry to be able to supply before making an investment that will sit by the bay to rust ^…

    think

  37. kingman
    February 25, 2016

    great initiative, this is the sort of solutions that one would expect our private sector to be proposing, however , I have just one concern, and that is, with a capacity of just four 20′ containers how cost effective this venture will be.

  38. Titiwi
    February 25, 2016

    And they can pay in Bitcoin, right O.J.??

    • lightbulb
      February 25, 2016

      you release Bitcoin is used internationally currently.

    • Real
      February 25, 2016

      In September, several big names in finance and banking invested in the bitcoin startup Chain. This included Nasdaq, Citi Ventures, Capital One Financial, and Visa.

    • Titiwi
      February 27, 2016

      Bitcoin is banned by leading world economies such as Russia, India and China (in official bank transactions) and a number of others such a Sweden and Ecuador. meanwhile the EU and U.S.A. are planning to outlaw it too.

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