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‘Need for policy on entrepreneurship’

Marlon Madden

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There has been tremendous support for the development of entrepreneurship from both the private sector and government, but greater focus needs to be placed on some areas if it is to be further developed in Barbados.  
This is the belief of University of the West Indies (UWI) lecturer Dr Paul Pounder, who told BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY that entrepreneurship was “our way out of the recession in terms of circulating revenue and in terms of employment”.
“Sometimes it seems as if [some] organizations are offering the same types of support and then there are still several gaps that exist in terms of starting a small business,” he said.
“So the issues relating to research and development, having funds, issues in relation to bureaucracy and turnover time with some Government institutions seem a little bit long at times.
“Those may be the areas we need to focus on and maybe [put] policies [in place] which will support research and development and innovation. That might help as well, in terms of enhancing the organizations and small businesses,” suggested Pounder.
Commending the Barbados Entrepreneurship Foundation (BEF) for its dream to make Barbados the number one entrepreneurial hub in the world by 2020, Pounder said some of their goals were “a little bit extreme but the majority of them are realistic”.
“2020 seems a little bit short-term. But certainly, once we stay focused and they achieve 50 per cent of the things they say they are going to achieve, then hopefully the country will go forward in the right direction – in terms of making people more aware of entrepreneurship and having people set up small businesses which will generate . . . foreign exchange and help with employment issues,” he said.
The small business development lecturer was speaking ahead of addressing a group of students from the Barbados Youth Service about areas of creativity and entrepreneurship at the Cave Hill Campus last Wednesday. During the workshop, Pounder encouraged the two dozen boys and girls to “think outside the box” and come up with new ideas.
The students, aged 16 to 22, also had the opportunity to learn the various stages in setting up a new business, the advantages and disadvantages, and the legal aspects.