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OAS Secretary General participates in TIC Americas closing ceremony and awards presentation for young entrepreneurs

  June 3, 2014

Organization of American States (OAS) Secretary General José Miguel Insulza and Paraguay’s Foreign Affairs Minister Eladio Loizaga took part in today’s closing ceremony and awards presentation for the young entrepreneurs’ Talent and Innovation Competition (TIC Americas 2014), organized by Young Americas Business Trust (YABT) with OAS support.

Praising "the talent and creativity of our hemisphere’s young people," Secretary General Insulza noted that this year's TIC Americas drew the largest number of participants in its history, with 2,165 teams representing the 34 active OAS member states. Mr. Insulza thanked Paraguay for supporting the program and thanked the sponsors, including PepsiCo Latin America and Central American Bottling Corporation (CBC).

"We have no doubt about entrepreneurship as an important social and economic development tool for our young people," Secretary General Insulza said. Unemployment in the region is a problem and "can only be solved through joint effort by all stakeholders: government, the private sector, technical partners, and you – the young people."

The Paraguayan Foreign Affairs Minister remarked that "in a country with more than 75% of the population under 35, talent search has to be ongoing." Besides, Foreign Minister Loizaga added, "Innovation has been, since ancient times and today in particular, a key determining factor for steady development.

"These young entrepreneurs have fully executed" their social responsibility role, Minister Loizaga stressed, adding that "the road to sustainable, inclusive development needs this thrust as well as efforts to open new opportunities in knowledge, science, and technology." The Paraguayan Foreign said that "with confidence in a better future for our Americas, I summon you to the never-ending task of working to make it great."

PepsiCo representative Javier Whittingslow described the evolution of the company's commitment to the event. "We started doing this as an adventure, but it is no longer an adventure – it is a full-fledged project, and we have made a success of it. We have to continue with this," he declared.

For his part, Roy Thomason, YABT funding partner, thanked the OAS and the event sponsors, explaining the success of the initiative: "With good people, you can accomplish just about anything; and we have managed to achieve what we have achieved thanks to good people, and good young people."

Finalists in this eighth edition of the TIC Americas competition included projects from the Dominican Republic, Colombia, Trinidad and Tobago, Mexico, Peru, Costa Rica, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, El Salvador, Ecuador, Honduras, Guatemala, and Grenada, selected by an evaluation panel comprised of international experts.
The TIC Américas 2014 prize winners were:

Eco-Challenge Category: Iluméxico, of Mexico
Eco-Challenge Category: Greenetics, of Ecuador
Eco-Challenge Category: TambranbyTamara, of Grenada.
National Talent and Innovation Category (Paraguay): ogakatupyry

A gallery of photos of the event is available here.

The B-Roll of the event is available here.

For more information, please visit the OAS Website at

Reference: E-224/14