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‘Economic Growth Strategy’ plan imminent

Mr Raja Kadre

Raja Kadre took up the position of Chief Economic Adviser to the Government of Montserrat sometime in April this year, after Karl Gomersall earlier in February took up his position as head of the Project Manager Office also in the Premier’s Ministry of Finance and Economic Management.

 At the very outset, Kadre was victim to unprogressive criticism when he announced, ‘one of his main goals is to oversee the development of an economic growth strategy for the government of Montserrat.’

At that time, he had also said that by the end of 2017 the government would have a clear strategy on how to develop important sectors of the economy. He explained then, “economic development agency and foreign direct investment agencies these are two separate things… if you’re not clear in your purpose in your direction in your deliverables the capital will not come.

He said there needed to be an economic communication strategy, “you raise the profile and that’s how the capital market gets the whiff of it…we should try that and so it won’t happen until you are absolutely sure on a piece of paper with deliverables, with guidelines, with clarity…”

This week, Kadre encouraged all, at home and abroad to make their input into the document, ‘the Economic Growth Strategy for Montserrat’. This he outlines, aims to advance Montserrat both socially and economically. “In the changing global economic environment smart nations have concrete policy and roadmap to pursue what kind of inclusive growth and sustainable economic structure they would want to move ahead,” he said according to some releases.

A release from GIU also informed that Kadre explained, the public engagement is an extremely important aspect of the plan development process.  He said, “The fundamental purpose of the plan is to assist Montserrat to develop its own unique local economy and build on its assets while gradually allowing the island to reduce its dependence on the UK Government.  To do this, the public must take ownership of the plan, therefore it is imperative that they have a say in what they envision for Montserrat’s future.”

He further noted that the plan must have the full support of all sectors for its goal and objectives to be realised.  “The plan must be a document that the Government of Montserrat (elected members and Officers), other public agencies, private businesses and residents can all get behind and support.  It will act as a clarion call for a renewed focus on the island’s economic development and, importantly, signal to private sector investors that Montserrat is open for business,” stated the Chief Economist.

“The current document economic growth strategy does exactly that,” he said. “Its deliverable, its context, its clarity, if put in a place properly then will allow Montserrat to unleash its potential. And we have to be cognitive about the fact that Montserrat’s unique geographical position gives us certain advantages.”

“Kadre said further, “This plan absolutely lays out clearly what we intend to do. By having this type of document which has a broader impact, broader spectrum of people not only here but in the Diaspora, in UK, wherever, has a solid input and allows the government and everybody included to have a sort of stake in the game.”

“That is the broader thing in terms of moving forward with the document,” he concludes.

To this end, a public meeting was scheduled for Wednesday evening at the Montserrat Cultural Center, expected to run from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., to discuss the economic growth strategy and delivery plan for Montserrat.”

Mott MacDonald consultants were to lead the discussions and a study. They said the mandate given to them was to involve residents in the process and share the vision for the future which is built on shared prosperity for all in this around a positive and confident nation going forward.

The consultants led by Paul Haman had this to say about the study going forward, showing the difference and perhaps the failure of what took place from 2008 – 2012 and beyond.

“There is definitely the potential here to do that, there have been many reports historically that was done on a case by case basis looking at particular issues particular sectors for Montserrat,” he said.

Continuing, “We believe that this is the first time that the Government of Montserrat has had consultants like us talking about what we can do locally, what is in the gift of the people of Montserrat to drive forward towards that economic vision to a very simple plan for a very complicated future and a very complex route in terms of the twist and turns that we will see along the way.

“What we set out therefore in our report is rules and responsibilities, so for the Government of Montserrat that responsibility is to be used to conditions through growth to make sure that we attract investment from the U.K. from the Caribbean Development Bank, from local and international investors making sure that those investments seem to be good returns that they seem to be safe and secure and that especially in physical terms the island addresses one of its big issues and that is obviously it’s connectivity to the rest of the Caribbean and the rest of the world.”

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Mr Raja Kadre

Raja Kadre took up the position of Chief Economic Adviser to the Government of Montserrat sometime in April this year, after Karl Gomersall earlier in February took up his position as head of the Project Manager Office also in the Premier’s Ministry of Finance and Economic Management.

 At the very outset, Kadre was victim to unprogressive criticism when he announced, ‘one of his main goals is to oversee the development of an economic growth strategy for the government of Montserrat.’

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At that time, he had also said that by the end of 2017 the government would have a clear strategy on how to develop important sectors of the economy. He explained then, “economic development agency and foreign direct investment agencies these are two separate things… if you’re not clear in your purpose in your direction in your deliverables the capital will not come.

He said there needed to be an economic communication strategy, “you raise the profile and that’s how the capital market gets the whiff of it…we should try that and so it won’t happen until you are absolutely sure on a piece of paper with deliverables, with guidelines, with clarity…”

This week, Kadre encouraged all, at home and abroad to make their input into the document, ‘the Economic Growth Strategy for Montserrat’. This he outlines, aims to advance Montserrat both socially and economically. “In the changing global economic environment smart nations have concrete policy and roadmap to pursue what kind of inclusive growth and sustainable economic structure they would want to move ahead,” he said according to some releases.

A release from GIU also informed that Kadre explained, the public engagement is an extremely important aspect of the plan development process.  He said, “The fundamental purpose of the plan is to assist Montserrat to develop its own unique local economy and build on its assets while gradually allowing the island to reduce its dependence on the UK Government.  To do this, the public must take ownership of the plan, therefore it is imperative that they have a say in what they envision for Montserrat’s future.”

He further noted that the plan must have the full support of all sectors for its goal and objectives to be realised.  “The plan must be a document that the Government of Montserrat (elected members and Officers), other public agencies, private businesses and residents can all get behind and support.  It will act as a clarion call for a renewed focus on the island’s economic development and, importantly, signal to private sector investors that Montserrat is open for business,” stated the Chief Economist.

“The current document economic growth strategy does exactly that,” he said. “Its deliverable, its context, its clarity, if put in a place properly then will allow Montserrat to unleash its potential. And we have to be cognitive about the fact that Montserrat’s unique geographical position gives us certain advantages.”

“Kadre said further, “This plan absolutely lays out clearly what we intend to do. By having this type of document which has a broader impact, broader spectrum of people not only here but in the Diaspora, in UK, wherever, has a solid input and allows the government and everybody included to have a sort of stake in the game.”

“That is the broader thing in terms of moving forward with the document,” he concludes.

To this end, a public meeting was scheduled for Wednesday evening at the Montserrat Cultural Center, expected to run from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., to discuss the economic growth strategy and delivery plan for Montserrat.”

Mott MacDonald consultants were to lead the discussions and a study. They said the mandate given to them was to involve residents in the process and share the vision for the future which is built on shared prosperity for all in this around a positive and confident nation going forward.

The consultants led by Paul Haman had this to say about the study going forward, showing the difference and perhaps the failure of what took place from 2008 – 2012 and beyond.

“There is definitely the potential here to do that, there have been many reports historically that was done on a case by case basis looking at particular issues particular sectors for Montserrat,” he said.

Continuing, “We believe that this is the first time that the Government of Montserrat has had consultants like us talking about what we can do locally, what is in the gift of the people of Montserrat to drive forward towards that economic vision to a very simple plan for a very complicated future and a very complex route in terms of the twist and turns that we will see along the way.

“What we set out therefore in our report is rules and responsibilities, so for the Government of Montserrat that responsibility is to be used to conditions through growth to make sure that we attract investment from the U.K. from the Caribbean Development Bank, from local and international investors making sure that those investments seem to be good returns that they seem to be safe and secure and that especially in physical terms the island addresses one of its big issues and that is obviously it’s connectivity to the rest of the Caribbean and the rest of the world.”