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Haiti - Economy : 4th annual Haiti Business, Investment Expo & Conference
02/06/2013 10:15:30

Haiti - Economy : 4th annual Haiti Business, Investment Expo & Conference
The Haiti Renewal Alliance (HRA) organizes its 4th annual Haiti Business, Investment Expo & Conference in Washington, DC, on June 6-7, 2013. For years, Haitians living abroad have hosted numerous gatherings in search for ways to have a positive impact on their homeland, both in response to urgent crises and sustainable development. Still, the collective potential of the diaspora has yet to be realized through a definitive structure. One group is hoping to change that.

Four years ago, the Haiti Renewal Alliance (HRA), headed by husband and wife team Firmin and Magalie Backer, organized a conference in Washington, DC, to showcase the business capacity of Haiti beyond its borders.

This year, with a diverse line-up of entrepreneurs and public officials, the Haiti Business Conference and Expo will serve as a platform to push for better conditions to do business in Haiti, including new laws aimed at decreasing red tape and the development of a small business office for the diaspora.

Several senior officials from the Haitian government will attend the expo : from Paul Altidor, Haiti’s Ambassador to the U.S., and Simon Desras, the President of the Haitian Senate, to Wilson Laleau, Minister of Finance, and Danielle St-Lot, Ambassador-at-Large for Investment in Women’s Empowerment.

"We look forward to engaging the diaspora in promoting investments in Haiti," Magalie Backer said. She is the Vice President of HRA. "This is the only viable option that has worked in other developing countries to create jobs. We have to shift the paradigm from aid to trade."

The various exhibitors and entrepreneurs who actually do business in Haiti may be the key element of the conference’s success. Firmin Backer, president of HRA, says the expo is "for the diaspora, by the diaspora" and each year, the list grows — an indicator that more and more Haitian entrepreneurs see the expo as an opportunity to market their services (which includes return participants like Kreyol Essence and Haiti Ventures). IMPORTANT Online Registration has been extended until June 3rd. https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07e6w0jj6z1ddf0b2b%20&oseq=&c=&ch=

With hopes that HRA can serve as a catalyst to develop infrastructure for engagement, they’re launching the Alliance Institute for Business Innovation — a virtual business incubator for diaspora investment. "In partnering with CFI (Center for Investment Facilitation), we hope to provide information to the diaspora about business practices [in Haiti]," Magalie Backer said. "This is an opportunity to inspire people to remain engaged in Haiti. If we can’t be advocates for Haiti, who else can be?"

Consult the official 2013 HRA expo guide

HL/ HaitiLibre

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