WorldSkills Talent Can Foster International Commerce

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The skills displayed at this year???s WorldSkills Barbados do not only hold the potential to produce entrepreneurs and contribute to the workforce, they also lend to the creation of industries as part of international commerce.

Minister of Labour, Senator Dr. Esther Byer Suckoo made this observation today as she toured the WorldSkills Barbados 2014, at the Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic in Wildey.

While observing garment making, beauty therapy, hairdressing and automechanic competitions, the Labour Minister noted that the event held ???great potential??? for growth for students, trainers and establishing industries.

???I was looking at some of the products that were made. I saw body scrubs and [other beauty products]???Making those things is one stage of the process, but then the packaging, that creates a whole other opportunity,??? Dr. Byer Suckoo said. ???Right now we???re putting them in nice jars, but we???re importing the jars so there???s an opportunity there for somebody to support the industry that???s making the lotions and similar products.???

Delving further into the possibilities that could be created by having a cache of skills experts, Minister Byer Suckoo added that the island already had shipping and airline networks, as well as freighting and the internet; features she noted that would enable persons to readily market products.

???There are so many possibilities out there if we think outside of the box, I think our people can do well, they just have to realise that the traditional [means] is not going to benefit everybody, but for more people to succeed, more people have to think outside of the box??? ???[We need to] expose our students to how they can use the internet to market [their products] globally, because we do know that we have a small market space here ??? but [with the internet], the market is expanded so considerably, even just within the region,??? she said, adding that it was crucial for courses to include basic marketing and management elements so students were better prepared for business and entrepreneurship.

WorldSkills Barbados 2014 ends tomorrow, Saturday, March 15 and the public is invited to observe the culinary arts competition at the Dining Club, Newton Industrial Park, Newton, Christ Church from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Admission is free.

nekaelia.hutchinson@barbados.gov.bb

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