042_Global13_Spotlight_Tri&Tob

Global 13

SpotlightTrinidad and Tobago  growth. High incidents of violent crime have the brink, pushed there by high instances of ings and spreading the resulting economic also scarred the country, discomfiting its lo- violent crime fuelled by drug trafficking. benefits across the population in a fashion cal population, but, interestingly, have not The entire Caribbean region is a tranship- that is more equitable than has been ob- damaged foreign investment, which doubled ment area between the supply countries in tained in the 50 years since independence. in 2011–12 compared to 2010–11. South America and the demand countries in Recognising this, the present govern- The present People’s Partnership (PP) Europe and the USA. Trinidad and Tobago ment has been unique in the Caribbean by government, led by the country’s first wom- is especially vulnerable because of its prox- launching a Medium Term Policy Frame- an prime minister, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, imity to the South American coast. work (MTPF) for the period 2011–14. The came to office almost three years ago in May To its credit, on coming into office, the MTPF is designed to foster a sustainable 2010 deeply conscious that to achieve a sta- government set about tackling both the eco- and stable economy in the future. It is the ble and sustainable economy in the future it nomic priorities and the crime imperatives brainchild of the country’s Planning Min- had to get the most out of oil and gas assets simultaneously. In August 2011, it imposed ister, Dr Bhoe Tewarie, a former principal and create new opportunities in agriculture, a state of emergency (SoE) after a spike in of the Trinidad campus of the University of manufacturing and services, especially be- crime. A recent US State Department re- the West Indies. Tewarie was also the chief cause energy assets are inevitably finite. port confirmed that during the SoE, which architect of the PP’s election manifesto. Reports indicate that the country’s proved expired in December 2011, the number of Therefore, the MTPF is, unusually, a mix oil reserves now stand at approximately murders was greatly reduced – down to 354 of political objectives with rigorous crite- 728.3 million barrels, and its gas reserves in 2011 from 480 in 2010, 508 in 2009 and ria for measuring whether or not objectives at 408.2 billion cubic metres. The new gov- 550 in 2008. have been met. ernment was also acutely conscious that the At the root of Trinidad and Tobago’s so- According to the MTPF, the government social stability of the country – as much as cial challenges, including crime, is main- has embarked on a number of strategies to its appeal for investment – was teetering on taining and improving the country’s earn- ensure sustained macro-economic stability Credit: BP p.l.c. The Savonette gas field is located off the shore of Trinidad and has a production capacity of one billion cubic feet per day 42 lwww.global-briefing.org first quarter 2013global


Global 13
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