Hon. Tracy Taegar-Panton Minister responsible for Investment, Trade & Commerce in the Ministry of Economic Development, Petroleum, Investment, Trade & Commerce
With an abundance of natural resources, human capital, and a strong financial reserve, Belize is one of the most business friendly countries in the region. Investors looking for opportunities in sectors as diverse as offshore outsourcing to light manufacturing,or even sustainable energy, need look no further than Belize. The opportunities exist for domestic and foreign investors alike.
Given our strategic location and closeproximity to the United States and the introduction of direct flights from key hubs in the U.S., Canada, Panama and Europe travelling to Belize has become easier. As a result of the increased access to timely flights from strategic hubs,investors can travel to Belize, meet with persons of interest and conduct their business ventures with ease.
Belize’s attraction includes the largest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere, some of the best Mayan Archaeological sites in the Maya world, and a talented and energetic English-speaking workforce. The government of Belize is committed to the continuous enhancement of Belize’s investment climate and this is evident through their investments in infrastructure and adaptation of policies that create an enabling environment for business development and growth. Belize continues to foster a culture of innovation and creativity by building a strong entrepreneurial and small business ecosystem, supported by the strident progress in demand-driven employment training, which takes into consideration the needs and requirements of our diverse industries.Belize saw, in 2016,substantial milestone investments in industries such as the domestic aviation, beverage manufacturing, luxury condo-hotel, knowledge process outsourcing, and tourism transportation.Such venturesepitomize Belize’s rich investment environment and encourage us to sharewith you all our commitment in ensuring that Belize is a competitive hub for your investments!
The Ministry of Investment, Trade, and Commerce over the past couple years have been working diligently to improve the ease of doing business in Belize evident from the GEM survey results for 2016 where the percentage for Total Early-Stage Entrepreneurial Activity (TEA rate) increased from 7.1% in 2014 to 28.8% in 2016, placing Belize as the country with the third highest TEA rate in the Latin American and Caribbean Region, next to Ecuador. Moreover, in January 2017, the Statistical Institute of Belize recorded a 51.2% rise in exports as compared to January 2016, attesting that even though Belize is one of the youngest nations in this region, we are fast becoming a very serious contender in export commodities.
More importantly, investors will find that Belize’s credentials as a gateway to Central America and the Caribbean, are more evident than ever before. They will find a production location in Belize that guarantees tariff-free access of goods and services to markets to all the English-speaking Caribbean countries (CARICOM) and enjoys a Partial Scope Trade Agreementwith Guatemala.Additionally, as a member of CARICOM, production in Belize benefits from bi-lateral agreements with Costa Rica, Venezuela, Cuba, Colombia, and the Dominican Republic;with Belizean goods enjoying special market access to the United States, Canada, and countries in the European Union.
I take this opportunity to congratulate BELTRAIDE on its latestINVESTBelize magazine and invite investors, both domestic and foreign, to take a closer look at Belize, your competitive destination hub for investments! We are here to support those who recognize the unique investment opportunity represented by Belize and extend a warm welcome to all new and future investment partners.
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