The Torres Strait Regional Authority’s (TSRA) Economic Development Programme has held its first Arts and Creative Industries business forum as part of its Regional Economic Investment Strategy (REIS).
The forum continues the commitment of the TSRA to provide opportunities for the local business community to access information and engage in discussions to foster economic development in the region through business success and jobs.
The two-day forum included presenters from the local arts, media and entertainment industries as well as advisors from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), QUT Creative Enterprise and cultural strategists.
TSRA Chairperson, Mr Napau Pedro Stephen AM, said delivering strategic, informed and targeted assistance to businesses in the Torres Strait region was one of the main priorities for the organisation, with the arts and creative industries the second identified sector.
“This forum followed on from the work we have already done in the fisheries industry and recognises the importance arts and creative industries plays in our culture and for business opportunities in the region,” Mr Stephen said.
“We were fortunate to have been able to hear first hand experiences from speakers including local fashion designers Aisha and Tahlia Bowie, artist Alec Tipoti, recording artist Patrick Mau and actor Jimi Bani.
“Participants included arts practitioners and arts industry workers with the next generation of entrepreneurs from Tagai and NPA State Colleges also in attendance, a very encouraging sign for our future.”
The REIS represents a new approach for the TSRA to help facilitate commercially viable business opportunities in the region and includes an existing suite of business support products and services to help establish or grow existing businesses, as well as a range of new packages for identified industries.
Mr Stephen said before applying for business assistance under the REIS, he would encourage applicants to check out the Business Product Selector Tool on the TSRA website or speak with someone from the Economic Development Program.