(CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana) Secretary General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Ambassador Irwin LaRocque praised Grenada for leading by example in using Information and Communications Technology (ICT) to create an enabling environment to pursue its social and economic development goals.
The Secretary-General was speaking during a ceremony at the CARICOM Secretariat in Georgetown Guyana where he received the credentials of Grenada’s new Ambassador to the Community, His Excellency Patrick Antoine.
In commending Grenada’s drive towards increased use of technology, the Secretary-General cited the country’s decision to become the first English-speaking Caribbean country to develop its own Internet Exchange Point (IXP) in 2011. Grenada he said was positioning itself for diversification by “embracing technology, while maintaining its reputation as the Spice Isle through its abundance in nutmeg and mace which supplies approximately 20 per cent of the world market in those commodities.”
Earlier in his remarks, Ambassador LaRocque noted the “hands-on approach” taken by the Grenadian Prime Minister Dr the Rt Honourable Keith Mitchell in executing his responsibility as Lead Head of Government for Science and Technology including Information and Communications in the Quasi-Cabinet of the Conference of Heads of Government. He recalled the Prime Minister’s involvement in tabling the Regional ICT Agenda and Platform for Action at the Heads of Government Meting in July 2004 as well as his encouragement to his colleague Leaders in 2003 to support the project which has evolved into the Caribbean Knowledge Learning Network Agency (CKLNA).
“Once again, Prime Minister Mitchell has taken leadership of the process and has successfully called on his colleague Heads of Government to devote a focused session on ICT when they meet at their Twenty-Fifth Inter-Sessional Meeting in St Vincent and the Grenadines next February. True to his hands-on approach, the Prime Minister will preside over a Ministerial Session which will consider the Regional Digital Development Strategy (RDDS) in preparation for discussion by Heads of Government,” the Secretary-General added.
Gegevens over (eilandengroep) Grenada:
Het op tien na kleinste land ter wereld
Oppervlakte: 344 km2
Data (archipelago) Grenada:
The ten second smallest country in the world
Area: 344 km2
Population: 109 590
ICT instituties: ICT Centre for Excellence and Innovation (ICEI)
On October 21, 2008 the Government of Grenada (GOG) signed agreement with the Government of India (GOI) to finance the setting up of an ICT Centre for Excellence and Innovation.
The Centre is equipped with 2 IT laboratories and a data room, a lecture/conference room, administrative offices and a library and resource centre.
Grenada is the Chair for Science and Technology in CARICOM, and must lead by example. The Centre is a hallmark of the government of Grenada, and the key driver in presenting new opportunities for fostering social and economic development nationwide. The commissioning of the Center is therefore quite timely and the impetus to fulfilling the objectives of the government to use Information and Communications Technology as one of five sectors which “have the greatest potential to contribute to the economic transformation of Grenada (“the transformational sectors”)”.
The Objectives of the Centre are:
- To increase IT knowledge and awareness among the citizens
- To generate direct employment through IT
Specifically, the Centre is designed to undertake the following:
- Impart advanced and specialized training programmes in ICT to the citizens of Grenada, and the wider region.
- Develop specialized skills among teachers & students (undergraduate & postgraduate) in the field of ICT.
- Train government officials in IT
- Assist in leveraging the use of ICT in various sectors of the economy
- Facilitate penetration of ICT usage in rural areas of the economy
- Set up a virtual reality lab for the promotion of technologies in the area of artificial intelligence