Gov’t to continue advancing of cultural, creative industries

THE Government says it will continue to pursue strategic policies and initiatives geared towards advancing the cultural and creative industries for the benefit of all Jamaicans.

This was stated Wednesday by Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia Grange, while addressing a session of the Eighth Biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference at the Jamaica Conference Centre in downtown Kingston.

“Recently, we got the green light to begin operationalising the National Cultural and Creative Industries Council. It represents a next step in providing meaningful support to our creatives, to ensure that they earn from their creations and abilities. The council will be called Jamaica Creative or Creative Jamaica,” she said.

The council, said the minister, has been charged with the establishment of a digital distribution and promotion platform for Jamaican music, video, and fashion; the establishment of a Kingston Creative Media Village for increased visibility and accessibility of creative practitioners; the establishment of the Creative Skills Council, and the establishment of a Culture and Creative Industries Fund for Jamaica.

The minister said the recent successful nomination of the Reggae Music of Jamaica to the intangible cultural heritage list of UNESCO, the successful nomination of the Blue and John Crow Mountains to the World Heritage list, and the current bid for Port Royal to be inscribed on the World Heritage list should be seen as the Government facilitating and creating opportunities for the people to lift themselves using cultural and physical assets.

She noted that the Government has been investing in preparing Jamaicans to benefit from the economic activities that will come with the inscriptions, adding that several economic opportunity workshops are being staged in communities close to a designated, nominated or soon to be nominated site for World Heritage list inscription.

The minister added that the island’s creative and athletic talents have done well on the world stage, and that it is a priority of the Government to ensure that earnings are realised.

Grange said many Jamaicans have been able to use the cultural and creative industries to move from poverty to prosperity.

The cultural and creative industries, also known as the Orange Economy, include activities such as architecture, audiovisual arts, digital services, fashion, graphic and industrial design, handicrafts, music and software.

In 2012, the global income Generated from the Orange Economy was estimated at US$547 billion.