Public Sector Agencies Host Business License Training Workshop

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The Bahamas Ministry of Finance’s Department of Inland Revenue, aligned with The Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA) and public-sector partners including The Bahamas Ministry of Financial Services, Trade and Industry and Immigration; The National Insurance Board (NIB) Department of Physical Planning, and Environmental Health held a “Business License Training Workshop” at the British Colonial Hilton.


Under the new “Easier, Faster, Better - Ease of Doing Business Initiative” spearheaded by the Ministry of Finance, the workshop targeted small and medium-sized entrepreneurs; specifically, those involved in “creative, cultural or artistic-based businesses”.  Attendees included “Tru Tru Bahamian” entrepreneurs; cultural leaders such Pam Burnside of Creative Nassau, and a variety of SME’s. The workshop commenced with a candid, and well received address by FS Marlon Johnson, who as Financial Secretary of the Ministry of Finance, stated he took;  “full responsibility” for the ranking of The Bahamas on the World Bank's Ease of Doing business scale;  however he emphasized his commitment to bring to fruition, the transformations necessary to allow Bahamians to spend more of their time and effort on developing their businesses, as opposed to overly onerous processes and procedures.

“We were most pleased to have FS Johnson attend the recent Local Sourcing Development Committee meeting” stated Suzanne Pattusch, Executive Vice President of the BHTA. “At the meeting it became evident there were still some questions surrounding the newly streamlined Business License application process. FS and his formidable team immediately agreed to host the training and workshop session. We were most grateful for the opportunity to help educate people about the positive changes made to the application process, to help entrepreneurs attain a business license and thus have access to benefits provided by key legislation such as the Ministry of Financial Services’ Industries Encouragement Act”

In 2017, The Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association spearheaded a Local Sourcing Development Committee; co-chaired by The Hon. Brent Symonette, MP; Minister of Financial Services, Trade and Industry and Immigration, and Carlton Russell President of the BHTA, to promote and propagate local sourcing; and further develop and diversify the Bahamian economy.  The committee consists of a formidable group of public-private sector representatives including established and burgeoning Bahamian entrepreneurs, representatives from The Ministry of Financial Services, The Ministry of Finance, The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, BAIC, Chamber of Commerce, Trade Portal and Creative Nassau to name a few.

The workshop had representatives from the Department of Inland Revenue, The National Insurance Board and the Ministry of Financial Services go through a step by step educational session, interspersed by an active question and answer period. The workshop culminated in a “live online” application process where seasoned staff of The Department of Inland Revenue's Department of Information Technology guided applicants through the sign up process at designated onsite kiosks. The training workshop is one of a number of sessions planned as a private-public sector outreach to facilitate education and access to government facilities and services.

Caption: Front Row from left to right: Suzanne Pattusch, BHTA; Patricia Johnson, MoF;  Daisy Almgreen, NIB. Back Row from Left to right; John Williams, DIR; Kristina Sweeting, MoF; Anton Francis, DIR; Athena Marche, Mo;, Melissa Poitier – DIT;  Sean Moss, DIT; Colin Keith, DIT.