#Nassau, July 31, 2018 – Bahamas – The Bahamas Government entered into a $20,000,000 Loan Agreement with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to fund the “Skills for Current and Future Jobs in The Bahamas” initiative. The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, the Hon. K. Peter Turnquest made this announcement at the Ministry of Finance, Thursday, July 26, 2018.
The Minister of Finance said, “The overall objective of the Loan project aims to increase employability and improve access to quality jobs for Bahamians, especially for the youth.
“This means additional skills training opportunities, particularly in three strategic sectors – maritime, medical services, information technology and telecommunications, and additional apprenticeship programmes.”
The three main components funded through the loan agreement are: an Apprenticeship Programme, an initiative to promote better job matching, and the creation of labour market information systems. He said $10,000,000 will be allocated to the Apprenticeship component, which is an expansion to the former administration’s National Training Agency (NTA) pre-apprenticeship initiative to include an additional 1,100 participants.
There will also be a new one year training programme for 1,350 advanced participants. All persons selected to this programme will receive a stipend.
DPM Turnquest announced that the Civil works component will receive $5,350,000 for the construction of a 43,500 square foot building, which will serve as a ‘one-stop-shop’ to address all matters for job seekers. The facility will be outfitted with childcare services for women who are seeking services from various support windows.
The third component is Labour Market Information Systems to which $2,350,000 will be allocated.
The Finance Minister said, “Under this component there is an emphasis on developing robust statistical data and making it more accessible.” He added, “This project is vitally important considering our expectation that The Bahamian economy will witness healthy economic growth in the near term.”
By Sydnei L. Isaacs