Video: Minister of the Economy, Trade & Industry

November 7, 2010

Minister of the Economy, Trade & Industry Kim Wilson addressed the media after the Throne Speech on November 5th. Speaking on the economy, Minister Wilson said Bermuda has not been immune to the effects of the worldwide recession, and that the two pillars of our economy; tourism and international business have been affected. She briefly addressed work permits, employment, training, job creation through start up businesses, the Economic Empowerment Zone and more.

The mandate of the new Ministry was mentioned during the Throne Speech:

As part of the Government’s efforts to support the economy, it has formed a Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. This exciting new Ministry will focus on improving the economy by addressing the needs of local business and the career aspirations of Bermudians.

These goals are not mutually exclusive as improving the economy will create more opportunities for Bermudians and Bermuda businesses. By bringing Labour and Training, Employment, Work Permits and the Bermuda College into this Ministry, a better assessment of the needs of the economy will be possible. This initiative will also enable the Government to monitor skills required, identify Bermudians that are looking for jobs and ensure that the right training is provided to Bermudians to meet the needs of our employers.

This Ministry will also oversee the process and ensure fairness and equity before determining that there are no suitably qualified Bermudians to fill jobs before work permits are issued. The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry also will focus on creating opportunities for Bermuda businesses and Bermudian entrepreneurs to start or enhance their business by expanding the Economic Empowerment Zone.

Therefore this Ministry will also be responsible for the Bermuda Small Business Development Corporation. This Ministry also has responsibility for the Post Office, which currently costs significantly more than it earns. New revenue streams are to be sought to reverse this trend.

You can watch Minister Wilson below, and view other videos from the post-Throne Speech press conference here.

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