By Linda Straker
Grenada has embarked on a process that will result in the development of a long-term framework, within which the pillars for achieving structural transformation and sustainable development will be identified, and actions taken to these set goals.
Called National Plan 2030, Economic Development and Planning Minister Oliver Joseph said that the plan will not be coming out of thin air, but will build on the current edifice of plans, policies and programmes.
Some of the reference guideline will be:
- Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS) 2015–19
- National Strategic Plan (NSP) 2007
- National Strategic Plan 2015 (NSP) 2017 (review of strategic plan for 2007)
- 2015 Strategic Plan to Modernize the Public Sector
- Strategic Plans of Ministries, Statutory Bodies, and State-owned Enterprises
- Other national sector and thematic strategic plans.
Speaking at the launch of the plan last week Wednesday, Minister Joseph said that Grenada’s commitments to regional agreements, international treaties and conventions, as well as global trends, risks, challenges and opportunities, will also be considering in designing the plan.
Cabinet has approved a Steering Committee and a technical committee to spearhead the development of the plan. The Committee will be chaired by Minister Joseph and will comprise:
- Mr Andre Lewis – Grenada Trades Unions Council
- Mrs Petipha Lewis–Smith – Grenada Private Sector Organisation
- Rev John Lewis – Alliance of Evangelical Churches
- Mr William Joseph – Conference of Churches
- Mrs Joan Purcell – Civil Society representative
- Mr Judd Cadet – Youth representative
- Dr Dunstan Campbell – Agriculture
- Mr Carlton Frederick – New National Party
- Mr Ferron Lowe – National United Front
- Representative from National Democratic Congress was not named but is expected
The terms of reference for the Steering Committee include:
- Reviewing and advising on the process for preparation of National Plan 2030
- Provide oversight of and guidance to the Technical Working Group
- Monitor progress on the preparation of the Plan and Support stakeholder consultations.
The members of the Technical working Group which is chaired by Macro Planner Dr Clement Jackson are:
- Dr Patrick Antoine, Chief Policy Advisor
- Mr Michael Baptiste, Macro-Economic Advisor
- Mr Fitzroy James, Director of Economic and Technical Cooperation
- Mrs Pauline Findlay, Ministry of Education
- Dr Linus Spencer Thomas – former PS Finance and Chairman of the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission.
Speaking on behalf of Social Partners, Judy Williams said that the process to develop a National Development Plan requires a serious change in perspectives and values. “It is an opportunity for Grenada to take a proactive, integrated well-grounded approach, guided by principles of equity, justice, sustainability and inclusiveness; an approach which guarantees the active participation of all its people,” she said, while explaining that Social Partners engagement with this process is to serve the national interest and should not be construed as otherwise.
“This is for the Social Partners, a bold, responsible, people-centered, bottom-up approach, by which we as Grenadians will determine for ourselves where we want to go and how we will get there,” she said, while explaining that the process of developing the National Development Plan is not a project, but a process to look ahead and work deliberately for the future, to advance what social partners believe is possible — development that is sustainable, rights-based, inclusive, participatory and all-embracing.
She advised that the process should not be rushed, but it must be prepared to allow for shaping and reshaping by our people as their vision for the short, medium and long-term. “In that sense, the outcome should not be pre-set, but respond to all our people’s aspirations, and the trends we see and can consolidate. This important initiative must advance the humanizing of the process of governance,” she said.
In his address, Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell said that his Government is committed to a fully transparent and participatory process. “The Plan, by design, must be homegrown. Indeed, it can be no other way. However, this Plan is not about structural adjustment. Instead, it is about structural transformation and the prosperity of all citizens. This Plan will serve this Nation long after some of us in Government have ended our period of service and moved on,” he told the participants at the launch while explaining that the Plan must transcend electoral cycles.
“Indeed, party manifestos will need to be checked for alignment with the National Plan, thereby minimizing the risk of any new Government “starting from scratch,” he said.