Dr Haji Azman bin Ahmad
Dr Haji Azman bin Ahmad, the Deputy Permanent Secretary (Higher Education) at the Ministry of Education delivering his speech. – DANIAL NORJIDI

THE LiveWIRE Brunei Business Awards provides a platform to create awareness among young Bruneians and promote an entrepreneurial mindset among them.

This was said by Dr Haji Azman bin Ahmad, the Deputy Permanent Secretary (Higher Education) at the Ministry of Education while delivering a speech at the launching ceremony for the LiveWIRE Brunei Business Awards 2017-2018 yesterday at the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Berakas.

In his speech, he noted that the objective of the awards is to reward and recognise the young aspiring entrepreneurs in Brunei Darussalam who are outstanding in business planning and existing operations.

“Therefore, I applaud this initiati-ve as it provides a platform to create awareness among young Bruneians and promote an entrepreneurial mindset among them,” he said.

“I believe the LiveWIRE Brunei Business Awards further reinforces the many strategic initiatives and programmes implemented by relevant government agencies, including the Ministry of Education, towards nurturing and developing entrepreneurship among youths and the community.”

The deputy permanent secreta-ry noted that the National Education System for the 21st Century or SPN21 curriculum sets out to meet the Ministry of Education’s vision in providing quality education at all levels from primary to tertiary levels.

He said this includes critical skills in mathematics, science, languages and ICT; study skills and values education; and entrepreneurial skills and lifelong learning.

“This is complemented by the provision of capacity building to our educators in the areas of entrepreneurship and business literacy, to enable our teacher in enriching our students with entre-preneurial knowledge and skills inside or outside the classrooms.”

He said outside the curriculum, the Ministry of Education also conducts entrepreneurial learning in other forms of school or institution-based programmes and competitions, as well as via collaborative activities and partnerships.

These include: Entrepreneurship Week at some schools; Global Money Week in collaboration with Employees Trust Fund (TAP), which involves activities in financial literacy; the Brunei Entrepreneurship Education Sche-me (BEES) in collaboration with Brunei Shell Petroleum (BSP) and Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD); and Success Weekends, which is one of the programmes conducted by the Entrepreneurship Village (for the National Entrepreneurship Agenda) for grades K-12 students.

“Hence, it is evident that there are many initiatives and programmes that have been rolled out to promote and strengthen entrepreneurship among Bruneians,” he said.

Touching on the LiveWIRE Brunei Business Awards, he said, “In terms of the extent of reach of this programme, I am pleased to note that there are more than 10,500 youths who have participated in various LiveWIRE Brunei programmes, and the Business Plan series is identified as one of the most popular programmes being introduced. Judging by the number just now, the participation of our youths is indeed encouraging.

“Another positive outcome of this programme is that previous Business Awards participants have produced a number of well-established young entrepreneurs in the commercial trading and financial sectors, energy industries as well as services industries.

“I applaud LiveWIRE Brunei for such accomplishment,” he said. “Nonetheless, there is still room for improvement that can be made, for example, in terms of the types of sectors participating in the LiveWIRE Business Awards.

“Hence, for this 11th Business Awards, I’m hoping to see more entries in various sectors, in particular in areas of Information Technology, Education, Agri-cultural, Agro-foods and Energy industries.

The deputy permanent secretary said that, likewise, similar efforts made by different agencies that have been actively carried out at institutional level, ministerial level as well as at national level, can be reviewed. “Such collective efforts should be aligned to our national agenda in particular towards improving the business environment in this country.”

He said, “Through this Business Awards, I believe LiveWIRE Brunei can provide its active engagements in entrepreneurship to the next level and empower our young enterprising Bruneians to discover, develop and grow their potential, and your endless encouragement for more numbers of young participants in producing future ready, creative and innovative Brunei entrepreneurs.”

Borneo Bulletin