BRIDGETOWN: Barbados expects to earn BDS$10 million (one BDS dollar=US$0.50 cents) by the second year of the development of an animation industry, which is part of the multibillion-dollar multimedia and entertainment sector.
“To date, 24 persons have been assisted with training in animation (3D) and discussions with overseas companies to have such done in Barbados is at an advanced stage,” Industry Minister Donville Inniss said last week. “Our goal is to earn $10 million in foreign exchange from this sub-sector by year two.”
Inniss said the Barbados Investment & Development Corporation was aggressively pursuing business in the animation industry and the Freundel Stuart government was committed to a rapid expansion of ICT-based companies here.
“To my mind, it is a low-hanging fruit which we have talked too much about and not done enough for,” he said. “I am afraid that this fruit will soon drop off the tree and be of no use to anyone here. The world would have passed us by.”
Inniss also announced that the Fair Trading Commission (FTC) would soon be responsible for regulating all licensed telecommunications companies operating in Barbados.
“Regulating the telecoms sector is critical as we develop a more level playing field, hold service providers to account and address inter-relationship issues that affect pricing,” he said. “To this end, work is on the way to have the Fair Trading Commission be responsible for regulating the services provided by all licensed telecommunications companies.”
Inniss said the government was committed to reducing the cost of bandwidth to businesses and households in Barbados.
“I have (recently) met with the heads of two of our major telecommunications providers on matters related to faster speed, more reliable service and a wider range of services in the sector. They will soon announce the details of their plans.”
Inniss said the government was also reviewing its advertising policy to include more advertising business with online media.
“My final point in terms of action from the government’s end is that in order for fairness and equity to prevail in our system, government agencies and corporations must recognize that this island no longer had two daily newspapers and, hence, the hundreds of thousands of taxpayers’ dollars spent each year in placing ads must be shared between all media, including the online newspapers.”