By CALEB AYANSINA
FEDERAL Government has called for support of the Authorities of United Kingdom (UK) in its bid to reposition creative industry in the country.
The Minister of Tourism, Culture and National Orientation, Chief Edem Duke, who made the request, when he received the Chief Executive Officer of British Council Worldwide, Martin Davidson, in Abuja, said it is of necessity to translate policies into economic development.
Duke noted that the partnership of the two countries would enhance youths empowerment and capacity-building for young artists in Nigeria.
He said: “It is therefore, important to work with British Council to reposition this sector that will help Nigeria to translate policies in the industry to the growth and development of our country.
“It is critical for us to look at the opportunity and possibility, using creative industry to foster growth and development among Nigerians, having been always said it eloquently that creativity is Nigeria biggest non-oil initiatives to create employment for our youths.
“Creativity is the most prominent soft-power that we can use in advancing our relationship, and as a pillar for development advancement of our crucial cultural diplomacy for young men and women, who have broken ground globally in the various aspects of creative industry.”
The Minister said Nigeria would need technical assistance from the UK experts from its creative industry, to assist develop curriculum for the creative academy in Calabar to be commissioned soon.
”Also, government is determined to resuscitate theater and museum around the country. We will need your technical assistance in this area,” he added.
During the visit that turned interactive, Duke further noted that the government in its agenda had decided to open cultural center in UK in 2015, and that, the country’s cultural week would be celebrated there.
“And I would like to seize this opportunity to promote UK-Nigeria beyond the Centenary that will give birth to the 2015 Nigeria Culture Week in London, which will be the mother of Cultural Week around the globe.
“And in this year proceedings our Centenary, we are looking forward to utilize this creativity as a major building-block to create job opportunity for our young men and women” he said.
Responding, the CEO of British Council Worldwide, Mr. Martins Davidson alluded to the significance of the partnership, adding that “we will look at the area, where we can get young British artists and young Nigerian artists to work together”.
According to him, the idea behind the suggestion was to ensure “exchange of ideas and learn one or two things from each other.”
Davidson noted that the UK would also assist Nigeria in the area of artist management and finance, promising to throw their weight behind the idea of celebrating Nigeria cultural week in London, comes 2015.
He said, “Past relationship between Nigeria and UK shows that two countries have learn so much from each other and partnering in skills acquisition and creative industry would strengthen the relationship more.”