Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell has outlined four areas which he says must be given top priority if the country is to pull itself out of its current economic problems.
He identified the areas as the industrial climate, Economic Development, Employment, and targeted intervention to combat the cost of living problems.
Dr. Mitchell made the remarks while addressing a panel of Stakeholders as part of an ongoing series of meetings to come up with solutions to help solve the burdening economic and financial problems plaguing Grenada.
“I came here with an open mind. I came here putting the past behind us. There are no limits to that. Therefore, I ask you to do the same.
The present and future are important,” the Prime Minister said.
“Every action we take we must also think of those who are not as fortunate”, he told the Stakeholders drawn from the Trade Union Movement, Grenada Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Grenada Hotel and Tourism Association (GHTA), Grenada National Organisation for Women (GNOW) the Inter Agency Group of Developmental Organisation (IAGDO) and Grenada Community Development Agency (GRENCODA).
Prime Minister Mitchell told the Stakeholder representatives that his one month old Government is placing a high level of importance to the relationship between the State and Stakeholders.
Dr. Mitchell made reference to comments by the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) Government, Sir Dwight Venner expressing concern about the state of the country’s finances.
The new government estimated the island’s debt at EC$2.2 billion, up from the EC$1.8 billion that the former National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration of Tillman Thomas had inherited from a previous NNP administration when it too office in July 2008.
Three weeks ago, the island defaulted on a payment of EC$19 million due to its Creditors under a Paris Club arrangement, forcing the new government to seek a second restructuring of the island’s debt obligations.
According to PM Mitchell, bold and creative decisions need to be taken to deal with the current situation facing the country, adding that the situation is also presenting enormous opportunities for Grenada.
“A picture of us going forward with a common approach must be understood I am convinced about the prospects. I don’t share the pessimism. We need to pull this thing together”, he said.
The leaders included TUC representatives Senator Rae Roberts, Chamber President, Aine Braithwaite, GNOW President Lorice Pascal and Judy Williams of Grencoda.
According to a government statement, the stakeholders “all identified with the concerns of the Prime Minister and expressed strong interest in working with the Government in the interest of Grenada”.
The Prime Minister has agreed to hold monthly meetings with the Stakeholder panel, which will be broken down into sub-committees to tackle specific issues.