The time is right for the strengthening of business opportunities between Trinidad and Tobago and the state of Florida in the United States because it can only lead to a win-win situation.
This was the view yesterday of Trinidadian-born Lt Governor Jennifer Carroll, the second highest ranking elected official in the state of Florida, who is heading a trade mission which arrived in this country earlier this week.
Speaking at a luncheon hosted by the American Chamber of Commerce at the Hyatt Regency hotel in Port of Spain where 30 Florida-based businesses and 175 local companies gathered, Carroll said Florida had over 40,000 residents originally from this country living in the Miami and Orlando areas.
There is a market in these places for local produce including provisions, hot peppers and cocoa, but more than that, there is an open service sector which can be tapped, she said.
"While you have a large service sector industry, over 60 per cent of your employee base is in that area but yet still your GDP is turning over about 38 per cent.
"That is a great opportunity there to have science and technology, manufacturing, call centres and for the 21st century and beyond, job opportunities in the new age and the new generation of things to come.
"I don't want any of our trade missions to be one way, it has be a win-win where it creates opportunity here, creates businesses, creates jobs, creates a business economic climate that will be beneficial to Trinidadians and Floridians as well."
Carroll said she had an opportunity to meet with a business which uses the Port of Point Lisas, looking for distribution in Florida so when she gets back home, her first mission will be to find a distributor for the local company in Florida.