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What's happening in Haiti?

Agritrans SA is a $27 million ambitious agricultural project whose goal is to cultivate organic plantains exclusively for exportation. On October 10th, 2014, in association with the 300 farmers benefiting employment through the project, 228.000 banana seedlings were planted over 1.000 hectares in Trou du Nord, a commune in northern Haiti, close to the city of Cap Haitian.

The Haitian government has injected $6 million into this project and plan to invest an additional $15 million in the coming year, to increase the plantation to 2 million banana trees. Agritrans SA has modern agricultural equipment such as irrigation pumps, an artificial lake with 700.000 gallon capacity, tractors etc... to assure the success of this important first step towards industrialized farming in Haiti.

Hugo Chavez International Airport Cap Haitian

October 2nd, 2014 was the Inauguration day of the Hugo Chavez International Airport in Cap Haitian, and American Airlines launching of its inaugural flight on the same day. American Airlines launched new daily service between Miami International Airport (MIA) and Cap-Haitien, Haiti (CAP), adding a new international destination to the airline's growing global network.

"We have proudly served Haiti for more than 40 years and believe this new service is important not only for our customers, but also as an important catalyst to develop the north coast and open up this historically significant destination," said Art Torno, senior vice president – Mexico, Caribbean and Latin America. Present during the Inaugurations where President Michel Martelly his Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe, the Minister of Tourism Stéphanie Villedrouin, all emphasized that Haiti is Open for Business and that this new International Airport will open up the historic northern coast to the rest of the world.

Hilton Gardenn Inn

In mid 2014, the Hilton Worldwide signed a Management Agreement with CAB, S.A to operate the new build 12 story Hilton Gardenn Inn Port-au-Prince Louverture Airport. Scheduled to open in 2016, this new Hilton Gardenn Inn hotel in Haiti will introduce the Hilton Garden Inn brand to the Caribbean and debut the company's first hotel in Haiti.

"We are excited the Hilton Garden Inn brand continues to grow around the world and we are looking forward to opening in Port-au-Prince," said Adrian Kurre, global brand head, Hilton Garden Inn."Value-conscious guests will enjoy their stay with an award-winning upscale and affordable hotel experience with superior amenities at an affordable price." Danny Hughes, senior vice president, Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America, Hilton Worldwide said, "As tourism continues to contribute significantly to Haiti's economic development, we are thrilled to work with Dominique Carvonis, President of CAB, S.A. and her team, and play a part in this growth.

With the brand's value proposition and the hotel's strategic location, we are confident the Hilton Garden Inn Port-au-Prince Louverture Airport will be a successful partner in the nation's capital and commercial hub." Dominique Carvonis, President of CAB, S.A. said, "Our joint efforts with Hilton Worldwide will help boost the environment of this industrial zone, creating nearly 100 direct jobs and 300 indirect employment roles. With Hilton Worldwide's comprehensive hotel training programs, we will develop skilled human resources thus contributing to increase the standards and quality of service to our guests, and ultimately enhance the prestige of our beloved Haiti."

Carnival Cruise

Carnival Cruise will build a U$70 million cruise ship port in Ile de la Tortue (Tortuga Island), off of Port-de-Paix, Haiti's northwestern coast, making it the 7th Carnival Cruise port in the Caribbean. The Island of Tortuga, so named by Christopher Columbus for its turtle shape, became famous in the 17th century as a lawless territory populated by Dutch, Maltese, French, English and Spanish pirates. This $70 million project will be the largest cruise investment ever made in Haiti, surpassing Royal Caribbean in Labadee. “The development will create an exciting opportunity for our guests to enjoy a new, secluded and stunning destination on the island of Tortuga that the company expects will become a highly popular place for guests to enjoy for years to come,” David Candib, a Carnival Corp. vice president, said in a statement. The completion of the Cruise port is expected to be in 2015.

Haytrac Power and Gas

Haytrac Power & Gas has begun the construction of its U$123 million, 15.000 m3 terminal for storage and supply of liquefied natural gas on August 20th 2013, near Cité Soleil and Morne à Cabrit . Also part of the project is the construction of a pipeline to directly supply fuel to the power plants of the industrial area of Port-au-Prince. The significance of this project is enormous, it will eliminate the cost of fuel transportation of these companies operating in the industrial parks, rendering them more profitable which will in turn allow them to increase their productivities. Nearly 200 permanent local employments and an estimated 6.000 indirect jobs will be created in the process. The construction of the facility will take 36 months.

Tourist Destination Ile-a-Vache

Île à Vache is a small island of Haiti lying on the southwest peninsula near the town of Les Cayes, it is about 8 miles (13 Km) long, 2 miles (3.2Km) wide with an area of 20 squares miles (52 km). On August 20th, 2013 major development projects for the tiny island have officially begun. The Haitian government has allocated U$230 million for the construction of an international airport with a 1.6 miles (2.6 km) runway, modern roads throughout the island, electrification, a community radio, an emergency center, and a community center which will house a library, an internet cafe and a playground for children and an 18 holes golf course. Separate fund have also been set up for the rehabilitation of 2 major mangroves reserve on the island. In the meantime 4 major investment groups in the tourism industry have expressed their desire to built hotel facilities on the Island, namely Azur Resort and Spa, Blue Marlin Development S.A, Charles Fequiert S.A, Holmes International Development LLC and Royal Oasis; and on October of 2013, the government of venezuela annouced its partnership with the government of Haiti on a Village and Hotel on the Island of Ile-à-Vache. The completion of these projects are expected to be in 2015. I should also mention that there are already two resorts on the island,Abaka Bay and Port Morgan; earlier this year, the beach of Abaka Bay was ranked #57 onCNN World's 100 best beaches.

Handxom

The Ministry of Commerce and industries signed accords with the representative of the anonymous Chinese enterprise Handxom, specializing in the manufacture of tablets and cell phones, for the construction of a free industrial zone of assembly for U$ 13 millions, in the commune of Ferrier. The company is expected to increase its investment in the assembly factory by U$3 million annually.

Some 13.000 direct employments will be created by this project. The representative of the Chinese enterprise also emphasize that the company will invest in the construction of additional modern industrial space within the free zone to attract other investors. The construction is expected to begin in early 2015.

Heineken

Heineken will be investing more than $40 million in the coming years, starting in 2014, to upgrade and expand the Brasserie Nationale d'Haiti (BRANA), the brewer located in Port-au-Prince. Heineken raised its stake in the company from 22.5 percent to 95 percent. As of 2013 Heineken employs 1200 people. By 2018, more than 18.000 farmers will be able to produce 20 % sorghum, known in Haiti as (Pitimi) of the brewed products and 40% of the packaging materials for the company. Keep in mind that Heineken already buys 5.000 tons of sorgho annually from the farmers. “Our continued investment in local sourcing and capability building will positively impact the lives and opportunities of thousands of Haitians.”

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