The ‘National Development Workshop for the Cultural Industries in Fiji’ opened today at the Pacific Islands Forum headquarters in Suva. The workshop, which takes place from 4 – 7 August, is being held in partnership with the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), the Fiji Department of National Heritage, Culture and the Arts and the Fiji Arts Council.
Practitioners, government officials, representatives from arts and culture associations, women’s groups, Fiji Arts Council, tourism operators and other private sector organisations will be among the participants who will gather for the national workshop.
The workshop is funded by the European Union under the € 495,000 ‘Enhancing the Pacific Cultural Industries: Fiji, Samoa and Solomon Islands’ project.
“This workshop offers an opportunity for key stakeholders in the public, private and civil society sectors to voice their ideas and present their programs,” says Mrs Fekita ‘Utoikamanau, Deputy Director General, Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC). “Critically, it offers the opportunity for our cultural industry stakeholders to develop a self-defined strategy for the national promotion of the cultural industries in the short, medium, and long term. It also stands as an opportunity to continue to forge and strengthen the public-private partnerships that are necessary for the long term sustainability of the cultural industries.”
“A cluster economy around arts, adventure and aspirations could develop in the Pacific,” says Johnny Mr Engell-Hansen, Deputy Head, European Union Delegation for the Pacific. “Developing education and training institutes will provide students with the required skills, while promoting creativity, twinning between designers, artists and small producers and boosting innovation through adopting e-commerce tools are some ways to promote and grow the region’s cultural industries.”
The workshop follows a Fashion Industry Workshop held in Suva earlier this year, and aims to devise agreed cultural industries strategies to promote, protect and enhance the cultural industries in Fiji. Similar workshops focusing on both fashion and cultural industries will also be held in Samoa and Solomon Islands later this year.