28 October 2009 – Several government agencies, organizations, banks and SME’s attended a workshop on SME Cluster Development at the Rizqun Hotel. The Workshop lasted the whole day. Among the topics that were discussed were:
- The activities the whole day
- The meaning of Cluster Development
- Case studies of Cluster Development
- How Brunei can take advantage of cluster development
- Presentation/Discussions on Sectors to Pursue Cluster Development
- Creating a a workgroup to spearhead cluster development in Brunei.
I found the workshop to be eye opening in the sense that all the stakeholder – SME’s, Government Departments, Banks, Business Development Services and Consultants could do more to help each other to improve brunei’s economy as well as pursuing the diversification from our oil economy.
Among the things that the speaker – Jagat Shah, said that I thought was important were:
- Creating Clusters is similar in developing union of nations such as ASEAN and the european union, it is not easy, but not impossible. and when it happens, its for the good of the collective.
- SME’s in all the countries that he has been to has the same problems. mainly the “false” belief that the government is not doing enough to help the local SME’s. Such beliefs can be remedied by a succesful cluste development. Where SME’s can take more responsiblities in making themselves succesful, and rely on the government as a facilitator.
- The importance of selecting a local Cluster Development Manager (CDM) – a person that would not be biased, or have business interests in the cluster, but have all the freedom and initiative to facilitate the cluster development.
A smaller group of people attended a quick discussion on the speaker’s findings from the workshop as well as to participate or volunteer in the “workgroup”.
I took some photos and placed them on my facebook http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=97322&id=550578077&l=a637ade151