OCTA Innovation Issue 23/ 2017 – Team Leader Missions

OCTA Innovation Issue 23/ 2017 – Team Leader Missions

 

Missions to BVI and St. Martin were very short but very engaging and promising. Two meetings with the Premier of British Virgin Islands, honourable Dr. Orlando Smith, and a meeting with the Prime Minister of St. Maarten, honourable William Marlin as well as multiple meetings with innovation directors and key stakeholders, were very fruitful due to the progress of moving from consultations and innovation strategies to actual implementation of the strategies.

Particularly meetings with head of governments and extensive discussions on how to how to implement innovation as well as to make innovation sustainable during and especially after the end of the project. Establishing innovation ecosystem and developing different innovation supporting instruments and enhancing public private partnership have been recognized as priorities.

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British Virgin Islands Innovation Missions Lizette O. George newsletter-en Jude Houston Sint Maarten
Mission in the British Virgin Islands

Mission in the British Virgin Islands

Mission of Milan Jezic von Gesseneck, OCTA Innovation Team Leader to the British Virgin Islands from 14th to 16th August 2017 assisted in progressing on different innovation issues on the island. The key innovation person in the British Virgin Islands is Lizette George, Innovation Director for the British Virgin Islands. All meetings and actions have been developed and coordinated by Lizette George.

Honourable Dr. Orlando Smith, Premier and Minister of Finance is known as long-term active promoter of innovation in the British Virgin Islands and in the Overseas Countries and Territories. Premier is very much interested in how to implement systemic innovation and how to develop entrepreneurship by bringing innovation as a driver to the economy.

Brodrick Penn, Permanent Secretary of Premier’s Office discussed with OCTA Innovation Team leader the awarded Pilot Project of Innovative Business Lab (IBL) and how to secure the highest impact of this innovation pilot project. The Innovative Business Lab project will be established and will operate under supervision of National Business Bureau which is a governmental body established under Ministry of Finance.

At Forge, new established privately owned incubator, Meade Malone, CEO of FORGE, has explained policy and business approach of this very new entity which will be opened to entrepreneurs before end of the year. The partnership should be established with IBL as they work in the same area: training and engaging incubators and start-ups.

This mission was the occasion to launch the Innovative Business Lab pilot project. The project is co-funded by the European Union and by the Government of the British Virgin Islands. The project has already received advanced payment and is engaging person to be in charge of the Innovation Business Lab. OCTA Innovation proposed to have a monthly “Mentorship innovative entrepreneur conference call”. The OCTA Innovation mentoring would enable interested entrepreneurs to have contact with the OCTA Innovation Team Leader or another OCTA innovation expert (to be agreed on in advance).

Team leader of Ecorys COSME SME Support Project Huib Poot and Prakaash Rostam his Key Expert SME & Private Sector Development presented the extensive work done on SME and incubation. Indeed a lot of work has been done in the British Virgin Islands and in the region. A significant set of information has been shared, what is enhancing synergy with our project and for benefit of regional Overseas Countries and Territories. Formulation of a Diversification Strategy and Implementation “Strengthening the Development of Small and Medium Enterprises of the OCTs in the Caribbean Region (COSME)” Executive Summary, Strategy and Implementation Plan.

OCTA Innovation Team Leader also met Luce Hodge-Smith, director of Culture for having assistance of short-term expert in creative industry.

The Team within the Ministry of Natural Resources and Labour: Permanent secretary, Joseph Smith Abbott, Deputy Secretary, and Tessa Smith, Senior Administrative Officer appreciate very much given assistance and support provided in fishery field. Another assistance in agriculture has been discussed.

Joseph Abbott who is a member of the BVI Innovation Board participated in the Innovation Workshop. Joseph Abbott gave appreciated input in innovation ecosystem establishment in the British Virgin Islands. Similar discussions about innovation ecosystem was held also with members of Chamber of Commerce, namely, A. Simon Potter and Louis Potter.

British Virgin Islands news Innovation Missions Lizette O. George
Meeting Premier Dr. Orlando Smith

Meeting Premier Dr. Orlando Smith

The two meetings between Premier of the British Virgin Islands, honourable Dr. Orlando Smith, and Milan Jezic von Gesseneck have shown continuous high interest of head of BVI government in propelling innovation in BVI. Dr. Orlando Smith, in early 2013 as OCTA Chairman has inked the OCTA Innovation project.

Premier Dr. Orlando Smith is very much interested on how to implement systemic innovation and how to develop entrepreneurship by bringing innovation as a driver to the economy and was even keen to eventually open an innovation workshop.

British Virgin Islands news Innovation Missions Lizette O. George
Innovative Business Lab

Innovative Business Lab

Meeting with Brodrick Penn, Permanent Secretary of the Premiers Office, was a great meeting mainly around two aspects. The discussion of the Award of the Pilot Project of Innovative Business Lab was the key theme and how to secure the highest impact of this innovation pilot project. Furthermore discussion was held around the instruments to be implemented to assure innovation to be impregnated into entrepreneurship of BVI.

Kick-off of the pilot project was held. The project has already received advanced payment and has engaged person in charge of Innovative Business Lab. Extensive discussions have taken place on how to move forward.

One initiative which should be of great interest also to other OCTs is the OCTA Innovation mentoring. Webinar meetings or Skype conference calls would happen at least once a month, enabling interested entrepreneurs to have contact with the OCTA Innovation Team Leader or another OCTA innovation expert (to be agreed on in advance).

British Virgin Islands news Innovation Missions Lizette O. George
Systemic Innovation workshop in BVI

Systemic Innovation workshop in BVI

During his mission to the British Virgin Islands, Milan Jezic von Gesseneck, OCTA Innovation Team Leader organized a workshop to meet Innovation stakeholders, both public officers and private stakeholders.

Continuous dialogue and synchronised actions between public and private sectors are axis of the systemic innovation. Public sector is in charge of establishing conditions for enabling innovation propelling. All legislative and regulatory instruments but also very important fiscal and financial instruments should be recommended and placed by public authorities but this must be continuously developed and fine-tuned in this continuous public-private real operational partnership. Public-private partnership involving continual dialogue and knowledge sharing, is pivotal to leveraging systemic innovation.

Workshop BVI August 2017-2

British Virgin Islands news Innovation Missions Lizette O. George
Innovative Business Lab in the British Virgin Islands

Innovative Business Lab in the British Virgin Islands

BVI pilot project aims to provide the necessary development assistance to persons seeking to develop new innovative ideas or establish innovative businesses thereby creating new niche markets through the establishment of Innovative Business Lab (ILB). Business incubation, as an economic tool, has become increasingly common around the world for stimulating development of the SME sectors. Innovative Business Lab would provide facilities and services to promote innovation driven small-business growth. Small business incubators have proven to be effective economic development tools. In fact, innovation driven businesses having incubation style support have a dramatically higher rate of survival than an average start-up business does.

Propelling innovation in the economic sector and successful economic diversification in the private sector should be principal tasks of the Innovative Business Lab. With this goal partnership of the public sector with the private sector needs to be enhanced around Innovation as key driver for sustainable growth based on permanent consultations and developing the most adequate legislative, financial and fiscal measures to implement systemic innovation in BVI.

The incubation programme will seek relationships within the region and the local economy, as a means of integrating regionally through the establishment of networks. Such networks will be established through the regional virtual incubator, which is now being developed through the COSME programme for connecting Caribbean incubation centers within OCTs.

incubator British Virgin Islands EU programme Caribbean SME support news Lizette O. George
Declaration

Declaration

The OCTA Innovation International Conference took place in Ponta Delgada, Azores on 11-14 April 2017. It gathered representatives of the Overseas Countries and Territories of the European Union (OCTs), the government of the Azores, the European Commission and innovation experts to look at how innovation is spurring sustainable development in small islands and to develop cooperation and future initiatives.

The pillars and values that are the basis of a society were considered as well as the capacities and needs of all stakeholders to underpin them. The implementation of different types and different levels of innovation have been under consideration. The vision of an economically prosperous and inclusive society should be based on innovation and entire collaboration between public and private actors. Innovation should support all stakeholders in society, in both economic and social fields and is perceived as crucial for tackling the issues of natural resources, climate change and sustainable development. The governments have to ensure enabling conditions for propelling innovation. Innovation Managers of the Overseas Countries and Territories of European Union, active members of OCTA Innovation, assembled in the Azores, commit themselves to feeding these dynamics.

Governments must take the lead in systemic innovation across all sectors; fostering partnerships between public and private entities and knowledge sharing and capacity-building. The ambition is to grow a number of thematic and regional centres of excellence among OCTs with a focus on those sectors where individual OCTs are already leading the way, and to share expertise among the OCTs and with regions.

Innovation Managers: Anguilla, Bren Romney; Aruba, Bianca Peters; Bonaire, Dianne Boelmans; British Virgin Islands, Lizette George; Cayman Islands, Jamaal Anderson; Curaçao, Fiona Curie; Falkland Islands, Michael Betts; French Polynesia, Bran Quinquis; Greenland, Lars Balslev; Montserrat, Angela Estwick; New Caledonia, Jean-Michel Le Saux; Pitcairn, Leslie Jaques; Saba, Menno Van der Velde; St. Barthélemy, Pascal Peuchot; St. Helena, Niall O’Keeffe; St. Pierre-et-Miquelon, Olivier Gaston; St. Eustatius, Roy Hooker; St. Maarten, Jude Houston; Turks and Caicos Islands, Alexa Cooper-Grant; Wallis and Futuna, Carole Manry.

OCTA Innovation Team Leader, Milan Jezic von Gesseneck: innovation@octa-innovation.eu

Greenland Falklands New Caledonia Sint Eustatius sustainable development Montserrat Curaçao British Virgin Islands Aruba event French Polynesia news OCTA Sint Maarten Turks and Caicos Islands St Barts Saba Cayman Islands Bonaire Anguilla Saint Helena Tristan da Cunha islands Saint Pierre and Miquelon Wallis And futuna Pitcairn Bianca Peters Menno Van Der Velde Jamaal Anderson Fiona Curie Lizette O. George Roy Hooker Carole Manry Dianne Boelmans Olivier Gaston Alexa-Cooper-Grant Michael Betts Bran Quinquis Niall O'Keeffe Pascal Peuchot Jezic von Gesseneck Conferences Azores
BVI represented at global tax transparency summit in London

BVI represented at global tax transparency summit in London

 

Benito Wheatley, British Virgin Islands’ UK representative, highlighted the territory’s value as an international finance centre stating, “The value proposition the BVI as a jurisdiction offers in the world economy is the legal certainty provided by the territory which practices English Common Law and is the headquarters of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court Commercial Division with appeal available to the Privy Council in the UK.”

He added, “Our corporate vehicles allow investors internationally to pool capital and invest in developing countries which urgently need capital to develop their economies and would otherwise not receive.”

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British Virgin Islands financial service fiscal tool news Lizette O. George

BVI new investment policy to diversify economy

Premier and minister of finance, Dr Orlando Smith, made the disclosure of the government’s action plan to strengthen and reposition the financial services industry.

The investment policy is intended to expand and diversify the economy and make the BVI more attractive to investors.

The premier noted that the policy will facilitate attracting the new areas the BVI is seeking to develop, those that generate economic activity within the territory or what the industry calls “substance”.

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British Virgin Islands financial service news Lizette O. George Jezic von Gesseneck