Caribbean Leaders Urged to Diversify Creative Economy Post-COVID
Opinion piece written by Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Director of International Trade and Commodities at UNCTAD
(Loop Jamaica) The COVID-19 pandemic has tested the resilience of many economic sectors and for creative industries, this is no different. For many in the creative economy, several critical revenues streams dried up as the world made its best efforts to curb the spread of the virus. Many developed countries have been swift to develop strategies to support, adapt and mobilise resources.
But for many developing countries, especially small island developing states (SIDS) in the Caribbean, how will creative industries recover and how can they be transformed to be more resilient in the future?
Home to a melting pot of cultures, the Caribbean has a comparative advantage in creative industries. This unique cultural identity has given the world some of the greatest literary and musical gifts from V.S. Naipaul, Bob Marley, and Rihanna. In this regard, the region punches well above its weight and is a force to be reckoned with in the generation of influential creative works.
In the Caribbean, the creative economy is an important source of income. It is largely concentrated within a few key sectors. Most notably, festival tourism, music and fashion make considerable contributions to the GDP. The creative industries have been identified as an area of opportunity for the Caribbean.
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