Side event: SIDS Global Business Network Forum - Policy Crafting an Enabling Business Environment

Event date: 26 May 2024, 11:00 - 12:30 (Antigua and Barbuda (GMT-4))

The fourth International Conference on Small Island Developing States dubbed ‘SIDS4’ will be held on 27 – 30 May 2024 in St John’s, Antigua and Barbuda. The Commonwealth Secretariat in partnership with the Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (UNOHRLLS) is holding a side event at the upcoming SIDS4 conference in Antigua and Barbuda.

Session 3 - Policy: Crafting an Enabling Business Environment

Micro, small and medium scale enterprises (MSMEs) make up the bulk of the private sector in SIDS. Such businesses are particularly vulnerable to shocks, especially those operating informally without access to recovery programmes or insurance.

A robust policy framework is fundamental for fostering an enabling business environment that supports sustainable business practices and ensures long-term economic stability. When such policies are set in place, it is equally important to help businesses take full advantage of the opportunities they have. It is also crucial to create an innovation ecosystem which encourages the private sector to develop new solutions to that contribute to the new SIDS agenda. As such, it is essential to strengthen the capacity of local businesses, institutions and workforces to adapt to changing market conditions and global shocks, and foster an enabling business environment.

This, in turn, contributes to the creation of resilient and self-reliant economies.

The session will hear from speakers on how building an enabling business environment can support growth for MSMEs.


The session will comprise a panel discussion in the form of a moderated conversation. This will be followed by an open discussion where all participants are invited to engage.

Expected Outcomes

• Recognition of the business environment and state of doing business in SIDS.

• Understanding of the opportunities that come with a strengthened business environment including for small businesses and youth entrepreneurs.

• Sharing of actionable strategies for building an enabling environment for businesses at all levels.

• Insights into effective policy measures for SIDS governments and business support organisations that can strengthen an enabling business environment.


View the speaker's biographies here.