PM Minnis focusing on empowering smaller businesses; honours hospitality professionals
By Lindsay Thompson
Jul 16, 2019 - 9:00:10 PM
PM Greets Former Hospitality Professionals President Paulette Dean. (BIS Photo/Kristaan Ingraham)
Nassau, The Bahamas – Prime Minister the Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis said his government is focusing on ensuring smaller companies have access to capital as a means of economic empowerment.
He made the statement while addressing the Former Hospitality Professionals Awards Banquet on the evening of Saturday, July 13, 2019 at Melià Nassau Beach resort, Cable Beach.
The association honoured trailblazers in the tourism and hospitality industry for their hard work and dedication.
The Former Hospitality Professionals association honoured trailblazers in the tourism and hospitality industry for their hard work and dedication. Pictured from left: Paulette Dean, President/Former Hospitality Professionals; Berkley Williamson, ‘The Hospitality Lifetime Achievement Award’ honouree; and Prime Minister Minnis at Melià Nassau Beach resort on Saturday evening. (BIS Photo/Kristaan Ingraham)
“Just as many of you worked through the tourism sector, we need to create opportunities for more young Bahamians to take greater advantage of the tremendous possibilities in the sector,” the Prime Minister said.
Prime Minister Minnis serves as the quasi-cabinet member for Tourism within the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).
“In this capacity, I am pushing for the more small businesses and entrepreneurs to become bigger players in the tourism sector,” he said.
During the recent CARICOM Heads of Government meeting in St. Lucia, the chairman of the CARICOM Commission on the Economy (CCE) stressed the need for member-states to develop more sustainable, resilient, inclusive and equitable development.
The Former Hospitality Professionals Awards Banquet on Saturday evening honoured trailblazers in the tourism and hospitality industry for their hard work and dedication. Pictured from left: Paulette Dean, President/Former Hospitality Professionals; George Myers, ‘The Hospitality Lifetime Achievement Award’ honouree; and Prime Minister Minnis at Melià Nassau Beach resort. (BIS Photo/Kristaan Ingraham)
“I noted that this will require that government find ways to empower its people by improving access to capital and assets.
“I told them that The Bahamas is on the right track when it comes to providing free education at the tertiary level, but that we must find a way for smaller companies to access more opportunities to grow their businesses,” the Prime Minister said.
He then added, “So, a major focus of my government, moving forward, will be to ensure that smaller companies have access to contracts that were previously held mostly by larger companies.”
According to the Prime Minister, the only way smaller companies can grow is if they are given the opportunity to bid for larger contracts.
“This is necessary if our people are to advance from poverty, to middle class, to wealth,” he said.
Prime Minister Minnis Addresses Former Hospitality Professionals Awards Ceremony. (BIS Photo/Kristaan Ingraham)
This vision will guide government’s efforts in the redevelopment of the Fish Fry, Junkanoo Beach and the Western Esplanade, as it moves to make the Bahamian experience even better for visitors.
“In this spirit, I hope that the current and a new generation of Bahamians in the hospitality sector will exemplify the same quality of service, creativity and dedication as our honorees,” the Prime Minister said.
He acknowledged the work of the honorees, namely: Bessie Serette,
Anthony Hepburn, Roslyn North, Reginald Smith, Florida Young, Chef Charles Smith, Monica Flowers, Melvin Brown, Carlton Haven, Joe Mott, Dr. Pandora McKinney Smith, Nathaniel Williams, Frederick Wallace and the late Thomas Pratt.
And, he recognized Berkley Williamson and George Myers, who both received The Hospitality Lifetime Achievement Award for their remarkable contributions.
“Indeed, the history of our modern tourism industry cannot be told without reference to individuals like George Myers, Berkley Williamson and so many of you,” the Prime Minister said.
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