Hon. Minister for Commerce, Enterprise and Small Business Development, Roselyn Paul says the sector continues to realise tremendous success.
Following the 2014/2015 General Elections, the Dominica Labour Party administration instituted the Ministry of Commerce, Enterprise and Small Business Development.
Hon. Paul says this was a profound demonstration of Government’s focus on enterprise and industry.
She says within the last year much has been achieved.
“The private sector continues to make a significant contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) recording about 84% and 83% for 2013 and 2014 respectively. This data provides some insight into the contribution of small enterprises since most businesses in Dominica are small.
“The micro and small business sector has proven itself in terms of its continued contribution to national development and indeed has further potential to create and expand employment and wealth, alleviate poverty, develop entrepreneurial skills, enhance market opportunities and encourage export and import substitution,” she reported.
The Hon. Minister listed some of Government’s investments.
“Over the past terms, our Government has provided funding and technical support not only through available resources in the Small Business Support Unit but at the National Development Foundation of Dominica, the AID Bank and the Dominica Youth Business Trust.
“Small business support by the Ministry has facilitated disadvantaged persons in terms of access to credit and has allowed them to take on necessary risk- a position in which the Kalinago community will find themselves, many single [mothers], young people and otherwise underprivileged persons. This has had a tremendous impact on enterprise development an in the lives of ordinary people.”
Hon. Paul says new plans for the sector will be achieved in this new financial year.
In the previous financial year, over 300 nationals island-wide benefitted from financial and technical support from the Government in the area of small business enterprise - the majority of which were women.
A total of 220 new businesses were established while 81 existing businesses expanded.
Hon. Paul encourages nationals to take advantage of opportunities made available by the DLP Government.
The Hon. Minister was addressing a town hall meeting in the Kalinago Territory earlier this month.