Thu | Nov 26, 2020

Entrepreneurship the backbone of Jamaican economy – Dunn

Published:Sunday | November 22, 2020 | 8:01 AM
Minister of State in the Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce Dr Norman Dunn (second right), along with (from left): Chair of fechnical team, Young Entrepreneurs Association of Jamaica (YEA), Gilroy Gordon; president, YEA, Cordell Williams; and communications specialist, YEA, Shanoy Coombs, at the virtual summit of the Young Entrepreneurship Association of Jamaica, at the Audi Showroom, Oxford Road, Kingston, on Thursday, November 12. The summit was in recognition of National Entrepreneurship Week from November 12-15, under the theme ‘The Next Wave’.

State Minister in the Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce Dr Norman Dunn says that entrepreneurship is the backbone of the Jamaican economy, and represents the country’s most important source of new employment.

According to the minister, entrepreneurship allows for the establishment of innovative companies, opens up new markets, improves productivity and creates wealth.

Addressing the Young Entrepreneurs Association Summit, in Recognition of Entrepreneurship Week 2020 under the theme, ‘The Next Wave’, at the Audi Showroom, Oxford Road on Thursday, November 12, Dunn said that “the COVID-19 pandemic has called for a shift in mindset and a revision of how our businesses operate”.

NEW INITIATIVES

The minister informed that the Government is committed to supporting the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector and has put in place a number of initiatives to stimulate a culture of entrepreneurship, built on creativity, problem-solving and innovation and demystifying the stories of business failure and business risk; the provision of appropriate business development and capacity building services tailored based on the particular stage of the business life cycle, training in management and marketing techniques, and financial management.

“Yes, there is always more to be done. We are doing what we can to create employment and build entrepreneurship. We are aware of the challenges, but I believe the stage is now sufficiently set to find ways around the obstacles. Indeed, that is what real entrepreneurship is all about,” the minister said.

INCREASED IMPORTANCE

President of the Young Entrepreneurs Association (YEA), Cordell Williams Graham, noted that the significance of the MSME sector in driving economic growth and social transformation is undeniable, and is more relevant and important than ever before.

“The Government’s recent interventions to help the sector rebound from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is proof that the Government is committed to the growth and development of the sector. As the impact of the pandemic continues to deepen, the economic woes which continue to beset the country call for the implementation of an immediate and much more sustained, collaborative and institutionalised approach to reinstating the sector,” the president said.

She added further that the YEA is committed to lending its efforts to the work that needs to be carried out in support of the MSME sector.