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London: Tobago private sector needs support
Chief Secretary of the Tobago House of Assembly Orville London says the island’s private sector needs serious attention and support. “I would say without fear of contradiction that this Assembly is in fact contributing to the private sector at all levels starting with the micro-entrepreneurs with the grants and the loans,” he said.
London said the Business Development Unit (BDU) continued to support the initiatives in health and social services, agriculture, community development and culture, education and sport, to help “little people” become “a little bit bigger.” These include the Enterprise Development Fund, which increased from $250,000 to $500,000 and will help with the construction of strip malls, a venture capital initiative, the Tobago Development Bank and support for the tourism sector.
However, he said: “If we are to create an environment which ensures there is labour available for the private sector, the private sector must make a commitment that they employ Tobagonians in conditions which are considered to be dignified and fair. “Secondly, if we give concessions in the business sector those concessions have to be passed on to the people of Tobago. For example, when we put a system in place to have flatbeds on the ferry so that goods come to Tobago at a lower cost and more conveniently to the business person, then we expect that saving to be passed on.”