H. E. WILLIAM’S FIRST ADDRESS TO PARLIAMENT

President of Dominica H.E. Eliud Williams says due consideration should be given by Dominica and other small island developing states to adopt bold changes to hasten the pace of economic growth.

The President made the remarks during his first address to Parliament during Wednesday’s Sitting of Parliament.

The Head of State's remarks were based on the current economic crisis now facing countries across the globe.

He says, “Amidst our desire for higher levels of growth we must pay due cognizance to the existing social, economic and environmental conditions in a world still grappling with the worst economic crisis in several decades.  This speaks to the need for organizational and personal change, a shift in emphasis after careful analysis of the likely impact and ramifications on the Dominican society.  These bold and practical measures require a new development partnership involving Government, the private sector, business institutions, trade unions, local government, youth, women and the rest of civil society.  It will require a process of change management.  Change management entails thoughtful planning and sensitive implementation and well-developed systems for consultation and involvement of all people who will be impacted by the changes so that the changes can be realistic, achievable and measurable.”

The island's Head of State suggested the involvement of overseas based nationals in the drive to foster economic growth.

“A purposeful analysis of the vision statement must propel us to a new resolve to fully utilize all our human, financial and natural resources and thereby, define policies and programs that engage our overseas-based residents to make a more direct contribution and intervention.  One such policy option would be to invite these Dominicans to invest in businesses and major development projects with which they could beneficially identify.”

H.E. President Williams also believes that a key aspect of the road to economic development is a partnership between the private and public sector.
“This further diversification of the economy with the direct involvement and participation by overseas –based nationals and expatriates as well as other key stakeholders could also serve to help bridge the foreign direct investment gap referred to earlier and unleash the potential of many youth and women.”
The President inspected a Guard of Honor including two platoons of police officers and one platoon of fire officers before addressing Parliament on Wednesday.