Awards ceremony for the 4th edition of the Innovative Business Competition

Tue. 26 of September of 2023, 15:19h

On September 22nd, 2023, the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MCI- Portuguese acronym) organised the award ceremony for the fourth edition of the Business Innovation Challenge (BIC IV) at the Hotel Timor in Dili.

This year's edition was attended by 165 young entrepreneurs from all the municipalities representing the three regions of Timor-Leste: East, Central and West.

Three of the 165 participating in the programme's activities were awarded prizes for their innovative ideas. All the participants will receive financial grants from the Ministry of Trade and Industry to start their businesses.

The Business Innovation Challenge is part of the "Youth Entrepreneurship and Employment Skills" (YEES) initiative. This initiative has the financial support of the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and the government. It is jointly implemented by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the MCI, the Secretariat of State for Vocational Training and Employment (SEFOPE), the Ministry of Youth, Sport, Arts and Culture and the National Institute for Entrepreneurial Development (IADE). The YEES program aims to create job opportunities and entrepreneurship programs for young people.

Acting Prime Minister Mariano Assanami Sabino motivated young people to pursue their dreams of becoming creative and innovative entrepreneurs, even facing challenges.

"For young people who want to become entrepreneurs, it takes a lot of effort, discipline and dedication. You will face difficult situations, but don't give up when that happens. Use these difficulties as stepping stones to success," said Mariano Assanami Sabino.

During the awards ceremony, the Minister of Trade and Industry, Filipus Nino Pereira, called on young people to contribute to the development of the national economy and pointed out that "many young people have creativity and innovation but don't have the opportunity to apply their skills".

"When young people become protagonists of the national economy, Timor-Leste will become an advanced and sustainable nation, which is why the government is committed to developing the economy based on the creativity and innovation of young people to support the national economy," said Filipus Nino Pereira.

The Minister of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Forests, Marcos da Cruz, the Governor of the Central Bank, Helder Lopes, KOICA's Deputy Director, Kwangsoo Ann, and the UNDP's Acting Resident Representative, Caitlin Wiesen, also attended the ceremony.