It is becoming increasingly important that policymakers in Barbados and the rest of the Caribbean change the way they do business in order to grow the region’s economies and adequately compete with the rest of the world.
In fact, Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler said it was necessary that policymakers and technical specialists work together to create “coherent systems that develop our societies and economies” and work towards developing interventions that resolve impediments to the countries’ goals.
He was addressing the opening ceremony of a meeting of the CARTAC Steering Committee at the Central Bank yesterday morning.
“The establishment and operation of the CARTAC is one of the more successful technical systems of intervention that assist many of our jurisdictions in meeting the demanding requirements of state craft in modern governance space,” said Sinckler.
“There is little doubt that Caribbean economies are operating in the most challenging of environments globally, regionally and domestically. It is a highly competitive environment, which is as demanding and it is unforgiving of failure. In this context, there it has become imperative that we relook the way we do business.”
He went on: “We can no longer continue to apply the same approaches based on past successes and expect that these will suffice to build a platform stronger enough to catapult us into advanced status.”
Sinckler said growing the economy called for a refashioning and re-strengthening of human and institutional capacity in order to achieve higher levels of efficiency, proficiency, productivity, and sensitivity.
He encouraged regional policymakers to have “a strong exchange of ideas” and improve mechanisms for the sharing of information in order to “build our economies to sustainable growth levels, eliminate poverty and serve our peoples to the best of our ability and capability”.
At the ceremony, Sinckler also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the IMF. He said the MOU formalized the relationship between the IMF and the Barbados Government, to reflect the transition of CARTAC from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to full IMF oversight.
The agreement confirms certain legal arrangements relating to the granting of certain privileges and immunities for staff of CARTAC. It also lays out the arrangement where the IMF assumes all financial and administrative responsibilities with respect to CARTAC’s operations, while the Government of Barbados will continue to provide office space.
During the two-day meeting, which includes stakeholder strategic planning sessions, a number of regional and international partners is expected to, among other things, discuss findings and recommendations on CARTAC’s operation over the past two years.