The Dominica Manufacturing Association will host its 7th Annual General Meeting next week.
The meeting will be held at the Garraway Hotel under the theme: “Revival of a Battered Sector: Manufacturing is still Relevant to the Economy”.
According to the Press Release the manufacturing sector suffered a devastating blow from Hurricane Maria which left numerous facilities in ruins and wiped out the source of raw materials for the cottage industries. Virgin coconut oil production that was showing much promise with a significant number of producers, before the hurricane, has been reduced to zero.
The Buy Dominica Supercentre that was established in 2015 and served as an outlet for locally manufactured products was flooded and subsequently looted at a great loss to the suppliers.
The Dominica Manufacturers Association is in negotiations with the government of Dominica and the AID Bank to secure reasonable terms and conditions to access the fifteen million dollars (EC$15 million) facility for manufacturing at the AID Bank. Approaches have been made to the Ministry of Agriculture to facilitate the importation of agricultural products such as dry coconuts, plantains, peppers, cocoa beans and other products required for agro-processing, until such time that local production is re-established.
The seventh annual general meeting will be convened amidst the closure of some of the major manufacturing facilities such as Bello Products and Dominica Breweries and Beverages Ltd, whose properties are still in ruins.
The seventh Annual General Meeting of the Dominica Manufacturers Association will focus on regaining the confidence of the manufacturers to continue investing in the sector and to take advantage of the opportunities presented in the aftermath of Maria where the Dominican population is showing signs of nostalgia for Dominican products that are no longer available on the market.