Tracey Panton Says It Was a Good Year for Investment
Later, it was the turn of Albert area representative and Minister of State for Investment, Trade and Commerce, Tracey Taegar-Panton, to deliver a presentation marked mostly by technical numbers about the work her Ministry has done and plans to do in the coming year. According to Taegar-Panton, Belize did not lack for investment in the past year and small businesses are expanding like never before.
Tracey Taegar-Panton, Area Rep., Albert
“Over the past year, Madam Speaker, the Ministry used every opportunity to promote investment across sectors, aligned with key national priorities, and even included shovel-ready projects that were submitted from the private sector. Amidst a wave of global economic uncertainty, 2016 was a phenomenal year. In 2016, the Ministry along with BELTRAIDE, was able to champion the culmination of four major investment projects, generating some five hundred and eighty-seven million dollars and three thousand eight hundred jobs…(Applause) spanning across all sectors of our economy. We also successfully concluded a record increase of re-investments totalling a hundred and fourteen million dollars, (Applause) translating into thirteen hundred additional employment opportunities – a bold move, if I can say so, Madam Speaker, and a vote of confidence from our partners in the private sector. Madam Speaker, this past year, through our Small Business Development Centre at BELTRAIDE, our advising, training and support services continue to secure positive results. We worked towards increasing the competitiveness of a hundred new entrepreneurs. We engaged over nine hundred and seventy new clients, with seven hundred and twenty-five of them, allowing them to access over one point two million dollars in the form of grants and commercial microloans.”