Tuesday 4 August, 2020

UWI looking forward to agro-business project at Dukes

Principal of The UWI Cave Hill Campus, Professor Eudine Barriteau.

Principal of The UWI Cave Hill Campus, Professor Eudine Barriteau.

The University of the West Indies Cave Hill Campus will soon be deepening its relationship with China as it embarks on an Agro-Business Project on 28 acres of land at Dukes, St. Thomas.

News of this came from Principal of the Cave Hill Campus, Professor Eudine Barriteau, at the recent opening of doors of the Confucius Institute at Cave Hill.

She says by way of scale and scope of activities, the UWI-China initiative will be the single most important thrust in agribusiness development and related entrepreneurship in Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean.

“We are now awaiting approval from Town and Country Planning. However we believe that this project has the potential to not only transform local and regional agriculture but will make a significant contribution to Barbados in agro-business development,” she noted.

Opening of Confucius Institute at UWI Cave Hill

As the university ensures they move in step with national and regional policy makers, Professor Barriteau says they have taken note of recent calls for a strengthening of competency-based education. The Duke Project, she says, is an answer to such a call as it is expected to provide a wide range of accredited training to meet the future needs of Barbados and the OECS in the field of agribusiness entrepreneurship development.

Under the project, they are expected to produce quality leather goods from the Barbados Black Belly Sheep for Barbadian company, Island Leathers Inc. They are also aiming at training Caribbean nationals in the manufacturing of chocolates and associated confectionary through support from The Caribbean Development Bank and the private sector.

She says if all goes as planned, they will be looking at the growth of vertical integration programmes to produce final products of the West Indies Sea Islands Cotton in partnership with the local company, Exclusive Cottons, of the Caribbean Inc, and implement commercial farms for agribusinesses under the umbrella of the Barbados Small Business Association and the Cooperative Department of the Barbados Government.

Professor Barriteau says UWI intends to keep the relationship and ties with China growing, noting that it augurs well not just for the university and the recipients of all programmes and training, but for the countries involved.

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