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Minister: Carnival industry still in embryonic stage
Dr Lincoln Douglas, Minister of Arts and Multiculturalism, said he is willing to work with all relevant stakeholders and government agencies to ensure money collected in mas royalties over the past few years is disbursed.
“The issues of royalties and copyright are with the Copyright Organisation and are under the Ministry of Legal Affairs. I will work with the chairman of the National Carnival Commission (NCC) on some of these issues and to try to assist in whatever way I can to support the payment of these things. I support the artistes and what they do and the need for royalties as that is the way they make their living. I will work with whatever organisation, whether it is from my Ministry or wherever else,” he said.
Dr Douglas was at the National Carnival Development Foundation’s (NCDFs) launch of its business magazine, Mas Quarterly, at NAPA. He was responding to claims by NCDF chairman Mahindra Satram-Maharaj that between 2007 to 2012 millions of dollars in royalties had been collected but not disbursed. Dr Douglas also called for a greater use of technology and management skills in developing Carnival as a product.
“The Carnival industry is still in an embryonic stage and there is still so much more we can do to improve it. Development is needed in every area such as research, planning, management and marketing,” he said. The minister praised the NCC’s new chairman and said Carnival must continue to develop in a professional way.
“We have had a new chairman of the NCC, Allison Demas and I think she is doing a fantastic job. Carnival always poses a challenge for us and it is a place with a lot of guardians and gatekeepers and so when you change things people get nervous and that is okay. “But carnival must change in a positive way for T&T. We must see a continued development in the artform and management skills so it can be made more attractive to the international community,” he said.
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