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Plans progressing for trust loans, job programme

TRE GREAVES, [email protected]

Plans progressing for trust loans, job programme

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Budding Barbadian entrepreneurs can look out for the promised trust loans by year-end.

And hopefully, by the first quarter of next year, the First Jobs Initiative will be officially ready for roll out.

Minister in the Ministry of Economic Affairs & Investment Marsha Caddle made this disclosure tonight. 

Caddle who is also the Member of Parliament for St Michael South Central was speaking at her Tweedside Road office after a new executive was elected.

She reminded members about the Barbados Labour Party’s campaign promises made during the election.

Despite next year’s tentative rollout timeline, the minister said they have already been doing some work in this regard.

“MPs are not waiting for the initiative to start. We are trying on our own to partner with private sector companies in our communities to pair them with young people,” she said.

During her address, she mentioned youth empowerment as one of their focuses. Though Caddle suggested employment levels could be better, she said that there was more to empowerment than that.

“We know there are high levels of unemployment. When I first came to St Michael South Central and started working I realised we had an entire generation of young people who had never worked before…. And evidence shows that the longer you stay out of the job market, the greater the chances that you will never work and so for me that group of people is extremely important. That’s one of the reasons why we established the trust loan and we will have that programme available before the end of the year.

“And the truth is a lot of young people don’t mind working for themselves. There are a lot of talented young men. Some of them build their own shops and are tradespeople and have other kinds of skills so the trust loan will give them up to $5 000 on the first occasion to be able to invest in their own businesses,” Caddle said. (TG)