AS THE country grapples with the effects of the covid19 pandemic, People’s National Movement (PNM) Tobago Council political leader Tracy Davidson-Celestine says productivity will determine the island’s success in 2021. “Tobagonians have a new role to play as we grapple with the new norms,” she said.
“Our individual productivity and innovation and critical to success in this coming year. We must take a close look at efficiency if we are to preserve jobs and productivity.” Davidson-Celestine’s statements were contained in a release from the PNM’s Tobago Council on Tuesday, which commended the Government on its $49 million budget presentation.
She said she fully supports the Government’s approach to using technology to reduce waste and duplication in its operations.
Davidson-Celestine added: “We have become the catalyst for sustainable economic growth and poverty alleviation. Meaningful growth will be achieved by enabling the private sector to lead and do what it does best, growing our economy and creating employment as outlined in the 2020 budget.”
The Tobago council said it is heartened by the focus on investment and technology in the budget. It said covid19 has forced the country to embrace a new way of living and operating.
“Technology and innovation are key to the new normal. This places a strong emphasis on the development of essential competencies, skills, values and attitudes economic and social development.” The Tobago council further described the budget as forward-looking.
“It faces, head on, the challenges presented by covid19 and embraces the opportunities of global and interconnected local markets.”
The Tobago council noted the budget also seeks to promote MSME’s (Micro Small and Medium Enterprises), which, it said, are also dependent on support to access affordable finance from the private sector, advisory services, infrastructural support and the availability of a skilled labour force.
The Tobago council said the budget promulgates pro-business policies in an effort to bolster this sector. “Technology will help fuel this. This will enhance the potential of the private sector to contribute to economic growth and employment creation.”
It said a vibrant private sector in Tobago will lead to improved food security, access to affordable technology and communication services, a thriving renewable energy industry and, when the borders reopen, increased tourism.
The Tobago council also welcomed the Government’s announcement that the long-awaited internal self-government bill will be a high priority during this parliamentary term.