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Postby duay7t15f » Mon Nov 13, 2017 6:17 am

By Lance HindsI was at a regional Business Colloquium last year where private sector and governmental agencies were discussing the challenges of regional and extra-regional export. During one of the plenary sessions, a buyer from England was explaining thatLance Hindsinternational retail giants like Costco have moved the various Caribbean Sauce products out of the diaspora market and are now integrating it into their regular product offerings.The challenge with this, however, is that Costco now requires larger volumes to supply these new markets and is complaining that the Caribbean producers are struggling to meet this new demand along with the new packaging requirement. This apparently was getting to the stage where the megastore was contemplating opening a production plant somewhere in the Caribbean or in Poland and produce Caribbean pepper sauce under the Costco brand.This of course, did not go down well with the participants, and it inevitably started the usual complaints about the cost of production, transportation, lack of financing, “unreasonable” demands by the overseas buyers, lack of government support etc.During my contribution to the discourse I suggested that Costco establishing a production facility in the Caribbean might not be a bad thing and that there might be creative ways to earn revenue within that dispensation. Despite the sudden chilliness in the room, I then went on explain that if we accept that it is going to be difficult to meet the demands in term of supply of pepper sauce, we should explore the possibilities of the likes of Costco engaging in the mass production of pepper sauce, but using our recipes under a licensing agreement.What that means is that the owners of those recipes would receive royalties every time a bottle of pepper sauce is sold. The revenue received under this economic model could be used by the owner(s) to become research and development facilities perfecting the recipes for further licensing.This idea gained a lot of currency amongst my colleagues in the room who, like me,Cheap Jerseys China, are part of the emerging economic sectors. The agro processing community, along with some of the government agencies stared at me like if I had a complete lack of understanding of the sector,Cheap Wholelsale NFL jerseys, hence the reason for my most naïve and uninformed suggestion. That of course is their opinion.The bottom line, however, is that generally the state of affairs has not changed substantially since that meeting, and if a new level of thinking is not applied to these processes,Wholesale Jerseys China, sustainability, profitability and even existence is going to be a more serious challenge. It is time, therefore, to begin the implementation of a knowledge economy for the long term economic benefit of our citizens.A knowledge economy can be defined as one in which the generation and exploitation of knowledge play the dominant part in the creation of wealth. The World Bank proposes four pillars on which knowledge and innovation-related policies should be built on. These are as follows:• An educated and skilled labour force able to continuously upgrade and adapt their skills to create and use knowledge efficiently.• A modern and adequate information structure to facilitate effective communication, dissemination and processing of information and knowledge.• An effective innovation system composed of firms, research centres, universities, consultants, and other organizations that keep up with new knowledge and technology and adapt it to local needs.• A country’s institutional regime and the set of economic incentives it creates that allows for the efficient allocation of resources, stimulates entrepreneurship, and induces the creation, dissemination and efficient use of knowledge.The World Bank argues that for countries to become successful knowledge economies, “they have to rethink and act simultaneously on their education base, their innovation systems,Cheap NFL Jerseys China, and their ICT infrastructure, while also building a high quality economic and institutional regime”.Guyana faces significant challenges with the four pillars as described above. This has resulted in the ranking of 80 on the World Bank’s Knowledge Assessment Methodology (KAM) Index. This index measures the extent to which the knowledge economy provides development and a desired quality of life on a sustainable basis by accessing, developing and using knowledge and information.In my opinion this has a lot to do with a long time narrow perspective on how our economy should grow. This must change. We need to develop the culture of using knowledge management as a comprehensive tool for social and economic advancement.Creating a diversified and knowledge-driven economy must be at the core of building international competitiveness and stimulating economic growth. Innovation must be developed and nurtured. We have to get high school and university graduates to further tap into their creativity and channel that into creating businesses. There are lots of young people with wonderful ideas who are unable to develop those ideas into sustainable income-generating operations. All stakeholders private and public should commit to finding ways to harness these ideas and support the impetus of moving them from thought to finish.So where do we start? The first thing we need to do as a country is to begin to respect the intellectual outputs of others. Our intellectual property-related legislation has not been updated since 1956. This means, for example,Wholesale Jerseys Online, that some of the items protected in modern legislation like computer software, databases and digital cultural industries simply do not exist under our current laws.  The Guyana Government over the years, despite numerous appeals,Cheap Jerseys Paypal, has made spurious arguments about the possible adverse effect on the social and economic facets our society and its citizens.The development, management and distribution of intellectual assets is a billion-dollar industry. We need to upgrade all legislation to compete successfully in this arena…especially when one takes into account the enormous potential of the cultural and technology sectors.I was at a youth policy workshop earlier this week, where I was told once again that youth employment in Guyana was estimated at around 40 per cent. I am not certain about the national rate at the moment, but none of the two is going to be addressed or reduced by the traditional economic sectors we have depended on in the past.  Critical to our long term economic development is the modernisation of our business processes.Lance Hinds is the current President of the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce. He is also the Chief Executive Officer of the BrainStreet Group, an ICT consulting and information services company.
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