The World Bank thinks the local animation industry can grow to US$69 million ($7.7 billion) in value in five years. As such, it is investing millions in the sector to attain this goal, but it’s a loan that the Government must repay.
“Given the interest expressed recently by global companies, and the demands of the industry, there is good reason to believe that, with the right talent, these numbers are achievable,” stated the World Bank in its project document entitled ‘Youth Employment in the Digital and Animation Industries’.
“In other words, an investment of just a few million dollars focused on training as well as on showcasing Jamaica’s animation industry globally can be expected to pave the way for the country to absorb tens of millions of dollars in foreign exchange.”
The World Bank, starting this month, will invest US$20 million over five years in the project, which is expected to benefit 15,000 youth directly and indirectly. The Wold Bank estimates the animation foreign exchange earning over five years to increase from US$5.4 million in year one to US$47.8 million in the fifth year.
Contacted for comment, the Jamaica Animation Nation Network (JANN) declined to say whether the figures were realistic.
“We haven’t seen how they calculate the figures and we are not privy to the document,” stated JANN spokesman Kevin Jackson. Wayne Sinclair, executive director of GSW Animation studio, did not return calls up to press time.
The bank valued the size of the industry based on the planned investment and the earnings expected from the sector.
Read More: Jamaica Observer