With unemployment at its highest level in over a decade, and more young Bahamians out of work than ever before, the PLP has an aggressive and comprehensive plan to help The Bahamas match its Caribbean neighbors in recovering from the global recession. In order for Bahamians to remain competitive and successful in a 21st century global economy, we must expand, reform and reinvent our education system; create an emergency jobs plan to offer much-needed relief to out-of-work Bahamians; offer incentives to facilitate SME creation and expansion; and expand our economy into new realms like renewable energy and e-commerce.
In every aspect of the PLP’s plan to create jobs, Bahamians will come first. Work permit fees will be higher for jobs for which there are qualified Bahamians; hotels will be required to engage Bahamian entertainment and utilize Bahamian companies; and educated Bahamians abroad will be attracted home with competitive salaries and career opportunities in education and government.
The PLP is proposing to double the nation’s investment in education, with more and better educational and training opportunities for all Bahamians – from preschool through graduate school.
For too many Bahamians, there is a severe disconnect between the skills they have and the skills they need to compete for quality, long-term jobs. Our Worker Retraining Program will retrain 5,000 Bahamians every year. And our Career Path Academies, which will be integrated with existing secondary schools, will provide 15,000 students annually with intensive vocational and technical training and apprenticeship opportunities in fields like financial services, tourism and information technology.
A PLP government is committed to working with private sector and civic partners to establish Technology Centres in various communities throughout The Bahamas. In order to succeed, Bahamians must be full participants in the information and technology revolutions.
Our Scholarship Rebate Program will provide business license fee rebates to companies that offer scholarships for Bahamians to attend tertiary education institutions.
The PLP realizes that Bahamians need relief now. We have a plan that brings immediate support to out-of-work Bahamians that will help kick-start our economy into high gear:
- New Jobs Rebate – The PLP will provide prorated business license fee and real property tax rebates for all companies providing evidence of full-time hires.
- 21st Century Classrooms – The PLP will create a public-private partnership to modernize classrooms with the goal of ensuring all Bahamian students achieve scientific and digital literacy.
- Family Island Modernization – A PLP Government will immediately award contracts to Bahamian companies to construct and repair docks, bridges, roads, airports and seawalls throughout the Family Islands.
- Community Improvements – The PLP will award contracts to community leaders for the upkeep and maintenance of parks and public spaces.
- Business Rebuilding Support – The PLP will offer tax holidays and rebuilding incentives for businesses experiencing major negative impact due to roadworks in New Providence.
- Home Sweet Home – The PLP will give Crown Grants and real property tax rebates to Bahamians prepared to start and complete construction on homes in the Family Islands within 18 months.
During our last term in office, the PLP added 22,000 jobs to the Bahamian economy. Now, The Bahamas faces new challenges, requiring – above all – a government willing to invest in Bahamians. The PLP is the only political party dedicated to putting Bahamians first – because we believe in The Bahamas.