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$5b venture on cards for region

Source: Nation News, 13th July, 2022.

BARBADOS AND OTHER Caribbean states are being earmarked for a venture that could bring US$5 billion in investment to the region.

During a press conference at the Wisdom Centre Auditorium, Roebuck Street, St Michael, yesterday, co-founder of Upturn Funds Caribbean, Dr Andre Thomas, said there were many possibilities for the Caribbean in the agriculture, maritime transportation, green energy and waste management sectors that could capture the attention of international investors.

With respect to Barbados, Thomas said there were two areas in particular where investors could see immediate opportunities – waste to energy and housing solutions.

Trash to diesel

“Where I see areas of investment are the waste to energy sector and that is in [the conversion of] trash to diesel, which is a venture capital project that we are involved in, and our goal is to bring about five of those in our plans for the Caribbean. I definitely see a great possibility within Barbados turning plastics into diesel and exporting that to the United Kingdom,” he said.

In relation to the housing sector, Thomas said the project he envisioned would bring members of the Barbadian diaspora within the United States together and enable them to get second homes within the Caribbean.

“I think that is huge. I think this could jump start and fuel the construction sector as houses are built for returning nationals and we are looking at how we can expand that to the diaspora from the United Kingdom and Canada,” he said.

Thomas said that if things go favourably several job opportunities could be realised.

Job creation

“Everything that we do is geared to create jobs. The ethos of our company is to create socioeconomic development through strategic investment. So it is very important for us to create jobs in the way we invest. We believe that many times the investments come in but the money does not stay in the country. You see things built but the people who built them, the money stays outside. So we want to work with a model that creates and helps the money circulate within the economy.”

The other co-founder of Upturn Funds Caribbean, Raphael D’angelis, who spoke at the event via Zoom, said the region was not integrated enough and this was limiting the economic prosperity of the Caribbean.

He said that if better modes of transportation between Caribbean states were established trade and export could be facilitated more.

The company also announced its summit aimed at promoting investment opportunities that could bring socio-economic development to the Caribbean. It will be held from August 25 to 27 at the Hilton Barbados Resort.

Source: Nation News


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