Barbados’ draft Cultural Industries Development Bill has been completed, and members of the public, especially those involved in cultural activities, are being encouraged to peruse the document and comment on it.

This disclosure has come from Permanent Secretary in the Division of Culture and Sports, Shirley Farnum, who said it was necessary for the Ministry to obtain feedback on the adequacy of the provisions contained in the Bill to meet the needs of the various sub-sectors.

"We also want to identify the ???tools of trade’ recommended by practitioners for inclusion in the schedule to the Act," Ms. Farnum explained.

Copies of the document are available at all branches of the Public Library and post offices across the island, the National Cultural Foundation at West Terrace,??St. James, and the Division of Culture and Sports, Warrens Office Complex,???? St. Michael. Additionally, the Bill can be accessed electronically by visiting https://www.gisbarbados.gov.bb/.

Written submissions should be sent to the Permanent Secretary in the Division of Culture and Sports, Ministry of Family, Culture, Sports and Youth by July 22, 2011.

According to Ms. Farnum, the Bill would provide for "the establishment of a regulatory framework to facilitate and encourage the sustainable growth and development of cultural industries, funding for cultural projects, as well as duty free concessions and income tax benefits in respect of cultural projects".

Underscoring the importance of the cultural industries, she stated: "They have become major drivers of developed and developing economies. . . Government has indicated that it will be a catalyst for the growth and transformation of the Barbadian economy in the 21st century."

For the purpose of the Bill, cultural industries include those activities which provide the public with commercially viable, cultural goods and services, which are developed for re-production and distribution to mass audiences. These include products and services like films, videos, television programmes, musical instruments, sound recordings, commercial theatre, dance, books, magazines, newspapers, journals, popular music performances, software, CD-ROMS and other related products.



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