The monthly meeting of the Economic Development Committee (EDC) was held on Thursday, 5 July 2018, and the following is a summary of the main items discussed:
Enterprise St Helena (ESH) delivered a report for the month of June. Local aspirations to enhance and develop product and service offerings continue and has resulted in 15 applications benefitting 12 entities, one potential business start-up and one youth start-up since 1 April 2018.
Following progress of the Fisheries Improvement Plan Working Group and investment aspects, the ESH Board gave the approval for the 'downsizing' of the St Helena Fisheries Corporation freezers. This project was approved by the ESH Board in March and is likely to conclude in October and will result in a more efficient and sustainable holding storage facility at the factory. Exploration of the ESH Pilot Project that focuses on enhancing the local fishing vessels' capacity for premium tuna continues. It is envisaged that such project will be drafted for ESH and DFID consideration during August.
Following the advertisement for Expressions of Interests for individuals and businesses looking to up-skill and sustain traditional crafts and trades, shoe repair, upholstery, tailoring, sail repair, wood turning, inlay etc in June, three existing businesses responded and are willing to provide training. A second round of advertising/campaigning will take place so that potential trainees can be identified.
The Government Economist gave a brief update on the progress of the Investment Strategy. The options for how any new scheme could be administered, the type of investments which would be favoured and the tax incentives which could be available are being developed.
The Agriculture & Natural Resources Division provided a short update on their proposal to import live chickens to St Helena in the next few months to support local egg production for business and small-holder purposes. A further update will be provided to EDC at their next meeting so that details can be shared with the public.
Source: St Helena Government