Un bain de terre natale, sharp, modern, speaks with wit, personable, feeling at home, an earthquake survivor “bureau moin crase sou moin”, great command of the Creole language, cutting-edge, Haitian at heart.
During his speech these words resonate: “investissements, culture, discipline, organization, parle a propos des milliards, les figures and la mesure.”
On a eazy, breezy day in Chicago, August 27 a meeting was held at the Levy Center in Evanston in honor of our cherished Ambassador Guy Lamothe. Our Alderman of Evanston, Mr. Lionel Jean-Baptiste was highly visible and served as a host as well as Chairman of the Haitian Congres to Fortify Haiti organization. At this gathering the attendees were thristy to meet and greet our Ambassador.
As a matter of fact, the Ambassador was chaleureusement or warmly introduced by our devoted Consul General Lesly Conde. He began his introduction by saying that it is with pride and optimism that we welcome our Ambassador Guy Lamothe. Consul Conde continued to say that “cet entretien ce soir sera fructueux.” Our goal is to welcome a platform to support the vision of rebuilding our country Haiti. Moreover the Ambassador Lamothe looks forward to meet the Haitian diaspora in Illinois and the Midwest. The rebuilding of Haiti is a daunting task but it is our task, said Mr. Conde. It is an opportunity to start our involvement in order to make a difference. Consul Conde concluded by saying that “I am full of life in my heart. We are happy pour acceuillir l’Ambassadeur.” applause…bravo.
Ambassador Guy Lamothe happily greeted the attendees and shared with us that this is his first time visiting Chicago. His office opened its door in 2007 in Haiti. He said that it is important that I meet with the Haitian community. He thanked Consul Conde for a great welcome. I am from Cap-Haitien. I worked both the private and the international sector. I returned to Haiti since 2005.
Ambasssador Guy Lamothe is appointed as the Director General for the Centre de Facilitation des Investissements (CFI). Mr. Lamothe was invited by the “Illinois Black Chamber of Commerce to its 5th annual conference held at the Mc Cormick Place in Chicago. The Ambassador also had the opportunity to share un expose. On August 26, Ambassador Lamothe met with potential investors and offer them investments opportunities to support the rebuilding of Haiti. Your Excellence stated that Chicago has a lot of potentials and welcome Haitians to invest in Haiti as well as opening their own businesses.
Ambassador Lamothe gave us an overview of the current job market in Haiti. He said that the baseball industry and factory work were highly prominent in Haiti. In 1985, this indutry generated 200,00 jobs however today it trickled to 25,000. As a result “fear” or inquietude is building in the nation. Port-au-Prince grew from 1 million habitants to 2.5 million. At this time our capital is unable to function. Morevoer 85% of our business are not currently registered. As your Director I am proposing that we move from “l’informal to formal.” It is an opportunity for business people to register and receive their patent from the Chamber of Commerce, “soulever le pays” said the Ambassador with reassurance. He welcomed the diaspora to support business growth and ownership in Haiti.
Ambassador Lamothe has achieved one goal successfully that is to register one’s business properly and timely. In the past a business registration required a 195 days wait period today this time is reduced to 30 days. A remarkable victory for the people and prespective business owners. A vision realized.
Ambassador Guy Lamothe cautioned us that moving to “the formal” will require a level of discipline in order to acquire success in our chosen enterprises. He stressed that discipline or “la mesure” is needed.” Furthermore “il faut la mesure dans tout” as he eloquently stated. He shared that the current building of factories is making a difference and the workers are paid minimum wages. He aslo stated that many people of Chinese descent have established themselves in Haiti and are making a difference.
Ambassador Lamothe concluded that aside from discipline a level of organization, unification and most importantly an “alphabet functionel” are necessary in order to meet our business objectives successfully. People are able “to read and write.”
During his speech, Ambassador Guy Lamothe demonstrated great hope and passion that the rebuilding of Haiti is in full force, and this shall be. I visit the factories every day and they bring many job opportunities for the people, he said.
Mr. Lamothe opened the floor to the attendees for a Q&A session. The questions ranged from culture, decentralization vs globalization, stability administrative, investing in Haiti, current relationship between Haiti and the Republic Dominicaine, the answer to the latter question is “quand on a la grippe la Repubique Dominicaine est enrumee.” Moreover how do we create win-win situations or gagner-gagner and expanding communication and media within the diaspora? Ambassador Lamothe shared that he is successful at sales and promotions. Mr. Lamothe acknowledged us for attending this gathering with the intent of meeting the Haitian diaspora and shared his vision as the Director for the (CFI). He aslo stated with great sincerity that he appreciated our poignant and selective inquiries.
From the desk of,