BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – A regional workshop being facilitated by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) is set to put development finance institutions (DFIs) in 13 countries in a better position to be able to serve businesses in the creative sector.
CDB, through its Caribbean Technological Consultancy Services (CTCS) Network and its Cultural and Creative Industries Innovation Fund (CIIF), is hosting the ongoing training exercise which seeks to equip representatives of the DFIs with the necessary knowledge and skills to appraise loan applications for creative sector projects.
Lisa Harding, coordinator, micro, small and medium enterprise development at CDB, noted that the workshop came in response to requests from DFIs seeking to better understand and serve micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) within the creative sectors.
“Recognising that access to finance is critical for MSME development and that the financial needs of MSMEs within the cultural and creative sector cannot be fulfilled solely through grant funding from CIIF, CDB has endeavoured to assist these MSMEs to access funding from financial institutions, including development finance institutions (DFIs). However, DFIs, in consultation with CDB, have acknowledged the need for strengthening of their own institutional capacity to better understand the business operations and practices of MSMEs to enable them to provide appropriate financial products and services,” stated Harding at the opening of the workshop.
Forty-four representatives (16 males and 28 females) are participating in the online workshop, which started on September 16. The workshop continues September 17, 27 and 30 and October 1 and 4, 2021. The participants comprise representatives from DFIs, intellectual property offices, business support organisations, as well as creative industries consultants from 13 CDB Borrowing Member Countries.
During the workshop, a Draft Credit Appraisal Manual, which was prepared by a team of three specialist consultants, will be validated by participants.
The workshop will be recorded and the Final Credit Appraisal Manual, inclusive of videos and other relevant information will be placed on CDB’s e-learning portal to be accessible by workshop participants, as well as other stakeholders within the creative sector to facilitate self-learning.
This capacity-building intervention is in keeping with ongoing efforts by CDB in undertaking interventions that contribute to strengthening the enabling environment for the continued development of MSMEs, thereby resulting in increased economic and social development of its BMCs.