About the CNSC
The Caribbean Network of Service Coalitions (CNSC) is a compelling example of how the region can work functionally and strategically together to ensure positive developments at both the national and regional levels.
The CNSC is an informal network of independent national coalitions of service industries, who work in partnership to support and drive the development of the region’s services sectors. Comprised currently of ten members (Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines and Trinidad & Tobago), the CNSC is able to achieve meaningful successes, without the costs and bureaucracies of a regional institution.
The coalitions and service champions of the region first came together in May 2007 at a Barbados Coalition of Service Industries (BCSI) event in Barbados. The event was a follow-up of a CARICOM initiative to assess the willingness of the region’s private sector to establish service coalitions. The objective of the conference was to raise awareness on the international service coalition movement and to share best practices. Participating organizations included the International Trade Centre, the US Coalition of Service Industries, the Canadian Coalition of Service Industries, the European Services Forum and the Uganda Service Exporters Association.
Following the first meeting of the region’s services leaders, a Memorandum of Understanding was drafted between the BCSI and the Trinidad and Tobago Coalition of Service Industries (TTCSI), the only fully active coalitions at that time. It was soon after expanded to include St. Lucia, following the launch of their coalition.
The region’s champions met again at the CARICOM Services Symposium in July 2009 and drafted a new MOU which included several coalitions that had more recently been launched.
In December 2010, the regional coalition champions came together in Barbados under a Pro€Invest funded coalition-strengthening project and reaffirmed and deepened their relationship with each other through the establishment of the Caribbean Network of Service Coalitions (CNSC).
The objectives of the CNSC, articulated at the December, 2010 meeting, are as follows:
- To raise awareness of the importance of the services sector at national/regional level;
- To develop export promotion programmes;
- To lobby for the development of the sector;
- To support institutional strengthening for the services sector (associations and coalitions).
The CNSC supports collaboration among the region’s service organizations in an effort to raise awareness on services issues, including joint lobbying and advocacy efforts, generate support at national and regional levels for the coalition movement and to share best practices. Ultimately, the network’s interest is in the development of the region’s services industries.
Recent successes of the network include the development of SERVICES Go Global, a competency based, export training programme for individuals and small services firms interested in exploring international markets. The regional programme will be implemented nationally via the coalitions of service industries.
The CNSC also spearheaded the development of Services Scoop, a trade in services magazine developed to raise awareness on the value of the services sector and the potential of trade in services and thereby encourage more support in the enhancement of both. Services Scoop is circulated not only regionally, but internationally as well.
The CNSC has been represented in several international services forums as well, including the Global Services Forum, Beijing (2013) and the World Export Development Forum, Kigali (2014).
The CNSC’s structure includes a rotating bi-annual Chairmanship, as well as an annually elected Vice-Chair and Secretary.
The CNSC is presently chaired by the St. Lucia Coalition of Service Industries.