St Vincent minister speaks to Vincentian nationals in London… and talks renewable energy

Dr Jerrol Thompson, Minister of Telecommunications, Science, Technology & Industry for St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), addressed Vincentian nationals, friends and other interested parties on developments in SVG, at the SVG High Commission in London, followed by questions.

The event was attended by dignitaries, nationals, and chairpersons of The New Association of St. Vincent and the Grenadines – London and The National SVG Committee – High Wycombe. The main speakers included: Thompson and Cenio Lewis, High Commissioner for SVG in London.

From Left: Mrs Carolin de Freitas-Sawh, Counsellor for St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) in London, Mr Cenio Lewis, High Commissioner for SVG in London, Dr Jerrol Thompson, Minister of Telecommunications, Science, Technology & Industry for SVG.

Thompson explained to the audience at the SVG High Commission, the government’s commitment in building a modern, competitive, post-colonial economy on a national, regional and international scale.

Through invitation of the Commonwealth Secretariat, he spent the preceding week in India, concerning small and medium incubator business programmes and the impact these have had on the economic growth of India and its infrastructure.

“Building international relations, globalisation and SVG’s commitment towards a knowledge-based society, we want to ensure our country is in the best position, in all sectors, to capitalise on the utilisation of Informational Communication Technology (ICT). In terms of development of the service industry, ICT is going to play a vital role and the Caribbean is in an excellent location in terms of off shoring,” Thompson said.

The Ministry is looking to mould ‘local’ ICT entrepreneurs with various programmes and workshops, providing the necessary tools along with business advice.

The Telecommunications Minister explained, “ICT is ‘moving on’ in St Vincent and the Grenadines and is very happy with the progress. The initiative in SVG will be replicated in other Caribbean States, further strengthening and unifying the Caribbean, with the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) extending its position as a good place for doing business.”

In the area of public health and the advancements on the hospital project, diagnostic procedures and treatments will now become available locally, including eye care and renal dialysis. ICT will be the platform for “Education for All” through ICT learning resource centres in all the Constituencies.

The recent opening of the Jetport in Canouan and the construction to commence on Argyle International Airport, tourism, investment and trade can be brought to additional fruition that will also provide local employment.

Concerning energy and environmental conservation with soaring oil and electricity prices, a renewable energy wind-farm is to be constructed near Brighton, existing hydro-electric turbines will be upgraded at Richmond, solar panels implemented, and consultations are being conducted for geothermal energy production in North Leeward and coconut biodiesel production.

The day concluded with the Minister entertaining questions from the audience, particularly the Diaspora.