Grenada PM Urges CARICOM on ICT


Above: the Buccament Bay resort in St Vincent

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Continuing his push for information and communication technology development in the region, Grenada Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell urged CARICOM heads of government to enhance the region’s ability to compete on the “global stage.”

Mtichell, addressing the CARICOM Heads of Government meeting at the Buccament Bay hotel in St Vincent, outlined a five-pronged plan for ICT development.

The Prime Minister’s five priority areas for ICT development included a single CARICOM ICT space; “bringing technology for the people,” cyber security, mobilization of resources and “developing the CARICOM digital agenda 2025.”

Mitchell holds the responsibility for ICT in CARICOM.

“Of course at the lowest denominator this must translate to job creation for a significant larger percentage of our citizens which ultimately will lead to a prosperous society with corresponding consequences of crime reduction and allow our citizens to live meaningful lives,” Mitchell said. “At the member state level, this requirement is well understood and there is sufficient evidence to support that leaders have positioned ICT as a development priority for their country.”

It’s the latest call for technological development in the region. Mitchell made headlines last year for urging the elimination of mobile roaming fees in the region, a call which was soon followed by Digicel’s announcement that it would be abolishing them.

“We observe that there exist intrinsic barriers to ICT infusion and adoption in countries referred to as Small Island Developing States (SIDS),” Mitchell said. “It would be terribly remiss if we do not amplify the ICT barriers as having equal, if not more urgency, than the environmental, economic and social vulnerabilities already identified and articulated for discussion.”