HomeLife & StyleNational culture policy on the cards

National culture policy on the cards

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The Education, Sport, Arts and Culture ministry is in the process of drafting a national culture policy meant to provide guidance and direction for the arts and culture sector in the country, a senior ministry official has said.

The ministrys permanent secretary Dr Stephen Mahere, who was the guest of honour at the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) business and arts seminar early this week, said his ministry was working with other stakeholders in a research to measure how cultural industries contribute to the countrys economy.

The stakeholders included the Zimbabwe Statistics Office, Culture Fund of Zimbabwe Trust and Unesco.

The permanent secretary noted that the policy will look at issues of incentivising the corporate world that invests and supports the arts and culture.

He stressed that the envisaged policy on tax rebates to corporates that fund the arts and culture will assist in ensuring that funding of the sector is both streamlined and approved, said NACZ communications and marketing manager Stephene Chikozho.

Chikozho said the seminar was convened out of the realisation that creative industries in the country were lagging behind in development due to lack of adequate funding, among other issues.

NACZ executive director Elvas Mari said the seminar created a tripartite forum for artists, business and the government to debate on challenges with regards to funding the arts sector.

The seminar created an important platform for the generation and sharing of ideas between artists and business executives with the view of helping creative industries grow in the country, he said.

The seminar, held at Pakare Paye Arts Centre in Norton, was facilitated by the chief executive officer for Business and Arts South Africa (Basa), Michelle Constant, whose organisation has conducted research on arts funding in South Africa.

Basa is a non-profit company whose primary aim is to promote mutually beneficial and sustainable business-arts partnerships meant to benefit society.

The seminar was attended by artists including Alick Macheso, Albert Nyathi, Cont Mhlanga and Professor Hebert Chimhundu.

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