New female senator calls for establishment of national competitiveness and productivity council
Contact: Claudia Monlouis
Thursday 5 May 2011 – The Upper House on Thursday April 28 welcomed its fourth female senator to the Chambers of the Upper House. Senator Dr. Gail Rigobert was sworn in ahead of the commencement of the debate on the 2011/2012 estimates of expenditure.
In her maiden presentation to the Upper House, Senator Rigobert indicated that given that government is imminently poised to access a significant amount of funds for the purpose of bolstering both the private and public sectors, she hopes that the National Competitiveness and Productivity Council will finally be established.
“Already as the prime minister announced this government has secured $500,000 in grant funding to ensure that the many inefficiencies in both the private and the public sectors will be addressed so as to enhance levels of efficiency, productivity and ultimately national competitiveness.
“Over the last 12 months, the stakeholders have been excited and have participated fully in the consultations that have been held and once again I wish to implore my ex-colleagues in the ministry of finance to ensure that this project comes into fruition.”
Meantime in the 2011/2012 budget, Prime Minister Stephenson King said the Government of Saint Lucia has long recognized that issues of low productivity have retarded the potential for national economic growth and development.
The prime minister said last year government initiated the process of establishing a National Competitiveness and Productivity Council (NCPC). The objective of the NCPC is to harmonize the efforts of workers, employers and the government, in order to facilitate the process of attaining productivity growth and improved national competitiveness.
The Cabinet, this year, approved the composition of a steering committee to oversee the establishment of the NCPC. The steering committee was conceptualized from the understanding that productivity, international competitiveness, and improved quality of life can best be achieved by consensus and broad participation.
The broad objective of the steering committee is to promote the development of a national productivity and competitiveness culture in Saint Lucia.
The National Competitiveness and Productivity Council will be charged with
1. Sensitizing the public on the importance and relevance of productivity
and how it relates to national competitiveness.
2. Promoting and monitoring all aspects of productivity growth.
3. Promoting and sharing success stories of improved
Prime Minister King in his address, noted the strong support for general participation in the governance process.
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