The Grenada Chamber of Industry and Commerce (GCIC) has taken advantage of modern technology.
The 93-year old business organisation has moved from having a stagnant website to a platform that now allows it to become more interactive with its broad membership and stakeholders.
The new online platform was officially unveiled last week Wednesday at the Grenada Trade Centre in Grand Anse, St. George’s.
“The newlook Chamber” as was referred to by the GCIC Executive Director, Hazelann Hutchinson with a modern expression of the institution is seen as being relevant to the needs of the business community.
Members and non-members can gain access to the Chamber’s programmes, products and services including membership, training courses, and advertising packages.
Hutchinson who spoke at the ceremony said over the last two years GCIC embarked upon a journey looking at the challenges facing the business organisation as it relates to the relevance and expectations of its members and stakeholders.
She spoke of the Chamber, in the past, having been tagged as being “the old boys club” and that previous and current Boards have been trying to remove that image.
In making reference to the relevance of the GCIC, Hutchinson said, “our role, is to provide support to you, the local businesses, and provide the necessary representation on behalf of the private sector at national, regional and international levels”.
She pointed out that the island’s leading private sector body recognises how important the stakeholders are and in the same breath how important its role is with them to keep the members informed and up-dated with policy discussions and decisions that will assist them in improving their business operations and the economy.
The GCIC Executive Secretary said it is her firm belief that every local business entity should be a member of the Chamber.
She holds the view that membership should be extended to the food vendors, farmers and operators of beauty saloons, to the corporate entities.
GCIC President, Aine Brathwaite disclosed that the Chamber is looking to increase its presence in the Parishes including Carriacou and Petite Martinique.
Brathwaite said that the Chamber, in 2013, finds itself in a position where, as an organisation, it needs to critically look at its role in this era and see how it can meet the needs of its members and society.
She gave the commitment that the Chamber will continue to play an advocacy role for its members on issues affecting them.
The GCIC President addressed the need for there to be greater networking with the financial institutions and agencies as a means of providing greater assistance to businesses, especially the smaller ones.
Minister of Economic Development, Oliver Joseph was present for the occasion and looked at how critical the business community is towards the development of the country.
Joseph indicated that the growth in the local economy will come through the private sector and encouraged the GCIC to get all manufacturers and other business outlets to post what they have available on the website.
Tourism Minister Alexandra Otway-Noel who represented Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell underscored how critical Information Communication and Technology (ICT) is to business.
Otway-Noel indicated that the world today is driven by technology and if Grenada has to compete, it has to be on the cutting edge.
She said platforms such as the one that is launched by the GCIC creates the appropriate environment for doing business.
“It connects the sector and opens our business community, to not only a national audience, but a regional and international one and, therefore, opens doors to growth and development of the sector,” she added.