PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad -- Trinidad and Tobago will be the first English-speaking country to host the Americas Competitiveness Forum (VIII ACF) on October 8-10, 2014 in Port of Spain. The theme of the VIII ACF is ‘The Human Imagination at Work: Driving Competitiveness, Powering Imagination’.
The Americas Competitiveness Forum is the premier medium in the western hemisphere bringing together government, business leaders and academics to discuss innovative methods to achieve economic competitiveness and promote innovation in the Caribbean and the Americas. It arose from the recognition of the need to promote trade, entrepreneurialism, address immigration reforms and highlight the importance of investments in research and development (R&D)as a key tool for competitiveness. It is also meant to address the fact that the Latin American and Caribbean region lags behind the rest of the Americas in terms of income equality and the level of investment that occurs in R&D.
The VIII ACF distinguishes itself from other international gatherings by promoting novel approaches to economic competitiveness and enabling private and public representatives to take advantage of creative opportunities to explore new models and expand their business.
Senator Dr Bhoendradatt Tewarie, the minister of planning and sustainable development is the chair pro tempore of the VIII ACF with responsibility for organizing the forum, coordinating the work of the vice chairs (Colombia and Guatemala),and serves as the spokesperson to channel conclusions or recommendations of the Inter American Competitiveness Network. The ministry, through the ACF Secretariat, has been working in collaboration with the Organisation of American States (OAS), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) as well as the Inter American Competitiveness Network, who will be meeting in Trinidad and Tobago in May 2014.
Other events that are being held in association with the VIII ACF are the human imagination panel discussions featuring practitioners in various fields in Trinidad and Tobago sharing their insights into the human imagination with audiences as well as an innovation village where citizens can participate in and witness innovations that have shaped lives in the region.
The objectives of the VIII ACF are:
• To bring together more than 1,000 delegates from the 34 nations in the Americas, including heads of state, cabinet members, business executives, trade delegates, academics and representatives from the region’s public and private competitiveness councils, non-governmental and international organizations.
• To advance the social and economic agenda of the Americas by facilitating the exchange of knowledge, lessons, experiences and ideas, foster closer collaboration among regional institutions and deepen regional integration.
• To provide a platform for dialogue aimed at enhancing the region’s competitiveness in the current global economic climate.
The specific objectives of the VIII ACF for Trinidad and Tobago are:
• To increase competitiveness and innovation as drivers of a growth economy committed to economic inclusiveness, equity and meaningful citizen participation
• To conduct research and studies to inform policies and institutions for the advancement of the competitiveness and innovation agenda of Trinidad and Tobago
• To cultivate an innovative society where citizens are empowered and human imagination drives social transformation and economic growth
• To showcase innovative and competitive solutions produced by local systems, institutions and individuals
• To encourage regional leaders to partner with private sector, academia, and civil society to improve regional competitiveness based on the Consensus of Santo Domingo
• To further strengthen the work and dialogue of the Inter-American Competitiveness Network (RIAC)