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Ministerials Paragraphs Related to the Theme Paragraphs VII Summit
Date:  5/15/2012 
Culture-related Issues
I. Increase efforts to promote and support cultural creative industries and activities as a part of national policies for promotion of sustainable job creation and income generation, especially for young adults
51. The Government of The Bahamas, in July 2007, envisioned a cadre of Bahamian young people as being a critical resource to achieve the socio-economic development through the establishment of a network of good business enterprises and contingency planning for sustainable development. To that end, the Self-Starters Programme was established as a mechanism for the creation and/or development of small and medium business enterprises through a mini-grant business programme for Bahamian youth, ages 18 to 30 years. The Government’s initial budgetary commitment to this initiative was a capital fund of $1 Million Dollars per annum.
52. The Programme’s objectives are to:
i. foster the concept of self-employment and the spirit of entrepreneurship, thus reducing unemployment among young Bahamians, 18 to 30 years;
ii. encourage wealth creation and the increase of Bahamian business ownership;
iii. promote small enterprise development among youth through the facilitation of easy-to-access start-up capital;
iv. facilitate training in interpersonal development, business skills, management and marketing techniques and procedures; and,
v. foster the further development of Bahamian businesses and Bahamian products necessary for a growing market.

53. Through the establishment of this Programme young Bahamians were encouraged to be innovative with their business development plans, and especially, were encouraged to develop businesses that produce authentic Bahamian craft goods. According to a recent report by the Self-Starter Unit of the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, some 28% (Crafts – 7%, Music and entertainment – 4%, Food – 13%, and Promotions – 4%) of recipients produced businesses that represented Bahamian craft, foods, arts, promotions and entertainment. As such, cultural creative industries by Bahamian youth, since 2007, to the present, have benefited from the Government’s investment of $1,192,887.80, out of a total investment of $4,260,313.56 (Comprehensive Report, SelfStarters Programme, 2011).

54. Further, the Government is currently establishing ways to promote the sustainability of these types of businesses generally through the proper management of its cultural entities; i.e., the Nassau Straw Market which now has a new Management System. A part of the role of the new Management is to ensure that only authentic Bahamian crafts goods are allowed to be sold from the market.
Paragraphs: 44 Paragraphs VII Summit: -

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