The Ministry of Commerce has awarded a contract for hosting small business workshops to the Chamber of Commerce.
Under the agreement, the Chamber will begin the workshops in October, using its membership as facilitators.
Chamber of Commerce CEO Wil Pineau said the 90-minute, free workshops will be held monthly. Sessions will focus on a number of areas that affect small businesses, such as regulatory matters, marketing, social media, banking and finance, business planning, human resources, debt collection and management.
“The workshops are intended to improve small businesses by providing them with useful information and guidance on key topics. We look forward to working in partnership with the Ministry of Commerce in the months ahead,” Mr. Pineau said.
Commerce Minister Wayne Panton said outsourcing the workshops will allow the Department of Commerce and Investment, which previously hosted them, to better focus on licensing and regulation for commerce activities.
“Government is committed to the support of small businesses, and given their dominance in our economy, their success translates to growth in our economy, expanded job creation and support for our middle class,” he said.
“The continuation of small business workshops will greatly assist entrepreneurs by providing them with opportunities to improve their skills in a range of key management areas to promote strength and growth.”
He added that outsourcing the workshops is part of government’s support for small business, which includes the recently announced extension of incentives for micro and small business owners until Aug. 31, 2016.
In addition, small businesses benefit from additional steps taken by government to lower the costs of doing business, the ministry said in a press release. These include the reduction in import duty for licensed traders from 22 percent to 20 percent in 2014; the 25 cents per gallon reduction in fuel duty for CUC’s pass through of fuel cost in January this year; and the further reduction, by another 25 cents, for an aggregate of 50 cents reduction in fuel duty per gallon to be in place in January 2016.