Business Center announced initiative to promote local products

Handcrafted products displayed at the exhibition, Fannu Expo, held on November 25, 2019. (File Photo/President's Office)

The Maldivian government is braced to launch an initiative to support the production and promotion of Maldivian products.

Business Center Corporation announced on Sunday that it is collaborating with Maldives Fund Management Corporation, at the initiative of the Economic Ministry, to conduct a program to support businesses and entrepreneurs working to introduce new products to the market.

Business Center is a 100 percent government-owned corporation established by presidential decree in 2017 to provide support and assistance to small and medium enterprises.

The corporation said that the purpose of the program was to promote the production of alternatives to imported products, and to promote the production of high-quality Maldivian products which can compete in international markets.

The program will also serve to provide technical assistance on product development and branding to local businesses and entrepreneurs and assist such parties to develop their businesses as joint ventures.

And in the long term, the program aims at promoting the creation of export-oriented small and medium enterprises, and at promoting the export of Maldivian products in a sustainable manner.

 Business Center noted in its announcement that it was the government’s policy to minimize dependency on a single economic sector in order for long-term economic development.

Interested parties have the opportunity of applying for the program by June 30.

The coronavirus pandemic has served to highlight the vulnerability of the Maldivian economy. The country, with its limited natural resources, relies on imports for most of its consumption needs, and is heavily dependent on tourism as a source of income. The coronavirus pandemic has hit the country’s economic hard, resulting in a rise in unemployment, a severe depletion of the State’s income sources - casting a shadow over previously positive economic forecasts.