Prime News Kenya

State to cushion creative industry amid raging pandemic

Posted By : Vincent Ashitey

The government will pool additional resources to help the creative economy tide over the Covid-19 pandemic, officials have said. 

Part of the national Covid-19 recovery package will focus on reviving the creative sector, a major employer for youth, Deputy Director of Enterprise Development in the Ministry of Trade and Industry Boniface Wafula told a virtual briefing in Nairobi late last week. 

"The Covid-19 pandemic has been a wake-up call for the government to come up with funding interventions to cushion the creative industry from disruptions," Wafula said. 

He said the government will leverage policy realignment, adoption of digital technology and public-private partnerships to enhance post-pandemic recovery of the creative economy.  

"We are keen to forge synergies with the private sector and harness technology to strengthen the resilience of the arts and entertainment sector amid negative impacts from the Covid-19 pandemic," Wafula said.

He noted that local artists will be entitled to grants, training and mentorship to ensure their businesses remain afloat during the pandemic, he said.

The creative sector contributes nearly 5.5 per cent to Kenya's gross domestic product (GDP), employing millions of youth, according to top ministry official. 

Executive director of Kenya Copyright Board Edward Sigei said youth-led startups in the creative sector will benefit from Covid-19 recovery funds.

"Our priority is to ensure that artists are cushioned from the Covid-19 crisis by providing them stimulus funds and linking them with the online marketplace," he said. 

Benjamin Muchai, senior manager at Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, said the creative industry has been growing 5.7 per cent annually before the pandemic struck.


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