BASSETERRE, St Kitts, February 3rd 2016. When it comes to opportunity, SKN nationals must be educated and prepared to join a workforce that is aligned to our national brand and development agenda. Aside from skills in hotel management, hospitality, and trades directly associated with our tourism product, there must be a broader and more substantial National Training Program focusing on:
- High tech jobs
- Renewable energy
- Financial services
- Digital and creative services
- Health and Wellness
- Business management
Today’s economy is diverse and filled with opportunity that is no longer contained or defined within our boundaries.
Tapping Into the Internet Economy.
Backing the industries of the future is a key part of our long-term economic plan to support business, create more jobs, and build a more resilient economy. Because we have access to broadband technology and due to our use of mobile and desktop computing devices, SKN nationals are well-suited to forging a seat at the international digital economy table. Especially, at a time when digital technology companies are pivotal to the future health of the economy. It will be entrepreneurship and innovation that usher in new innovative sectors creating new, more successful ways of doing business.
On any particular day, over 1.3 billion people are connecting with each other on social media. About 9 billion sensors are following much of what is created, purchased, and shipped. Are we to delay a national effort to teach and prepare our workforce for this reality—resigning them to efforts akin to using paper and pencil when the world leaders have fully integrated their learning, governmental, and security centers?
Development of our Entrepreneur Class.
Entrepreneurs generate new wealth. New and improved offerings, products or technologies from entrepreneurs enable new markets to be developed and new wealth created.
Additionally, the cascading effect of increased employment and higher earnings contribute to better national income in the form of higher tax revenue and higher government spending. This revenue can be used by our government to invest in other, struggling sectors and human capital.
Entrepreneurs break away from tradition and indirectly support freedom by reducing dependence on obsolete systems and technologies. Overall, this results in an improved quality of life, greater morale, and economic freedom.
Development of our Creative Class.
The “creative class” is the foundation for the “new economy” and represents the next economic age of development. Creativity has been lightening the load for policy makers in other counties to make changes in national education policy and offerings. Our Federation can benefit from taking a position early on to distinguish our workforce within the region.
The “creative class” is the engine for economic development, growth, and diversity that will give rise to where and how our living spaces, communities, and economies evolve, unfold, and, potentially, prosper. It is through this class new ideas arise and new technology is born, allowing for professionals to use their creativity to elevate business and finance, law, health care and related industries.
Development of High-Technology Skills.
Skilled workers in high-technology industries remain in great demand. Business analysts anticipate that within the next five years there will be a need for one million workers who know how to write computer code. Estimates are that only one in four of those computer coding jobs will be filled because not enough workers will be trained.
Offering SKN nationals the ability to secure academic opportunity, therefore providing scholarships based on need and performance to train on broadband, will compliment a nation building plan with focus on our future.