The Government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines on Thursday, 1st June, launched its third call for grant proposals from local businesses, as part of continued initiatives to provide access to funding to develop local enterprises utilising modern Information and Communication Technology (ICT).
This activity, which is being implemented by the Ministry of Economic Planning, Sustainable Development, Industry, Information and Labour, falls under the Business Incubation programme of the ICT-Led Innovation component of the Caribbean Regional Communications Infrastructure Program (CARCIP), SVG project. It provides access to grant funding of up to EC$100,000 (US$37,200).
To be eligible, the business must be ICT or ICT-enabled in nature and be a client of the St Vincent and the Grenadines National Centre of Technological Innovation (SVGNCTI), the approved business incubator for the CARCIP. The business must be legally registered with the relevant authorities in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, provide counterpart funding of 20% of the cost of the project (which can be in-kind, an equivalent monetary amount or a combination of both), and accept the financial requirements of the program.
To date, sixteen (16) businesses, including existing and start-up enterprises have received funding of up to EC$150,000 under the Business Incubation Grants programme. A total of over EC$1.4 million has been disbursed. The businesses received funding for equipment, software and marketing support. The recipients are receiving business management support and training as incubatees of the SVGNCTI Business Incubator Programme.
CARCIP SVG is a regional initiative that involves St. Lucia, Grenada and St. Vincent and the Grenadines and financed through a loan by the World Bank. This programme is estimated to cost EC$ 2.835 million (US $1.05 million) and to date over EC$1.144 (US$0.425) in grants has been awarded to local entrepreneurs.