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Strengthening ties

Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, Stephen Lashley and Jamaica’s Minister of Youth and Culture, Lisa Hanna.

Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, Stephen Lashley and Jamaica’s Minister of Youth and Culture, Lisa Hanna.

Heritage and the potential of the creative industries were two of the topics discussed when Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, Stephen Lashley, met with Jamaica’s Minister of Youth and Culture, Lisa Hanna, during a recent courtesy call at his office in Haggatt Hall, St. Michael.

One of the ideas put forward by Minister Lashley was an increase in cultural exchanges between the two countries which he said would strengthen relations and enhance mutual understanding as well as “ensure we continue to learn from each other’s creative experiences”.

Acknowledging the proposal, Minister Hanna stated that she was interested in learning more about Barbados’ Cultural Industries Development Bill. She noted that Jamaicans are a “talented people” and revealed that her ministry was seeking to assist in creating economic opportunities within the creative sector.

The Jamaican Culture Minister also stated that her country staged numerous festivals – many of which her Ministry supports with planning expertise and endorsements. However, she believed her island could benefit from understanding the dynamics of the organisation and marketing of the Crop-Over experience.

On the subject of heritage, Lashley assured his Jamaican counterpart that Barbados “remains committed” to helping Jamaica prepare its dossier for UNESCO World Heritage accreditation.

“We have a wealth of experience in that area; we have successfully completed the process of having Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site,” he said.

Minister Hanna also gave details about Jamaica’s museums, pointing out that her country had recently opened three museums, which looked specifically at TaŒnos, Rastafari and Norman Manley.

When the Ministers examined the prospects of heritage tourism, Hanna suggested that Barbados and Jamaica could learn how to perfect heritage tourism from Cuba.

“Their cultural policy supersedes ours, we need to learn from Cuba how it has incorporated culture into its tourism,” she said.

Youth development was also discussed. (BGIS)

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