JIS News

The Ministries of Education and Science, Technology, Energy and Mining are to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), to facilitate the identification of talent within local high schools that will support the development of the local Animation industry.

The announcement was made by Minister of State in the Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Julian Robinson, at a JIS ‘Think Tank’, held on June 6.

[RELATED: Submit Entries by June 16 for Animation Competition]

He said both Ministries are collaborating to further develop the business of animation among high school graduates, and enhance their skill level in the industry.

“We are going to be signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) soon, because the business process outsources have informed us that persons coming out of the high school system are not at the required level, so more needs to be done to boost their creativeness,” Mr. Robinson said.

He pointed out that the Ministry will be providing the appropriate training and expertise, so that such persons can tap into the animation industry, effectively.

The Minister said that Jamaica is poised to develop a lucrative animation industry, which will present significant opportunities for job creation and foreign exchange earnings, but there are some hurdles or gaps in the development process, which require support from the Ministry to resolve.

“We have an abundance of talent here, but there are gaps preventing us from converting them into businesses that can generate income. That we are seeking to change,” he said.

One of the biggest challenges facing the industry, the State Minister said, is that persons have brilliant ideas, but cannot afford to leave their day jobs to invest the time and effort to translate their ideas into realities.

“In essence, we have to provide the money, the business support and mentorship for such persons, so that their ideas can come to fruition,” he stressed.

The State Minister said that the development of the animation industry is a general thrust by the Government to drive entrepreneurship in Jamaica, and expose talents, so that Jamaicans can be more marketable worldwide. He added that Jamaicans are talented in all respects, including animation, application, and software development, which can move the country in a positive direction.

“We are going to build on the creativity that exists here in Jamaica, because our primary responsibility as an administration is to find ways to stimulate economic growth,” Mr. Robinson said.

He noted that the industry is labour intensive, and requires a lot of work, but is confident that Jamaicans will capitalise on it if the right structures are put in place.

The Kingston Animation Festival will be held from June 20 to 21 at the Mona Visitors’ Lodge, University of the West Indies, Mona campus.The festival, which is an initiative of the Technology Ministry, is being staged in partnership with the World Bank and the Government of Canada.

Contact: Jeneva Gordon