Carribbean leaders urged to embrace Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
(Forimmediaterelease. net) In keeping with the theme of ICT Week and Symposium Antigua plus Barbuda, “ ICT – Driving 21st Century Intelligent Services, ” Hon. Melford Nicholas, Minister of Information, Broadcasting, Telecoms and Information Technology, stated, “ ICT has disrupted the financial order. Technology has a way of working around the founded order. The Caribbean should not fear the disruptive nature of ICT – but embrace it. ”
Minister Melford was speaking at the 15th Caribbean Ministerial Strategic Seminar in Antigua and Barbuda. He produced a strong call to the region to embrace the emerging technologies as the Caribbean is facing the reality of how money will become a thing of the past. He further added, “ We should open our minds to the possibility of the economic sector. We should find ourselves a new sitting place in the world order, and if we respond well, we would find yourself in a position to exploit opportunities. ”
These seminars are designed to raise awareness of the emerging technologies, their ramifications for policy, legislation and regulations and their potential to foster national and regional development. It more explored new modes of providing secure financial services for all citizens, the use of cryptocurrencies, innovative ways of financing the region’ s ICT-enabled development, and advancing the Caribbean’ s participation in the information age.
Ms. Bernadette Lewis, Secretary General of the CTU, made a strong call to policy makers to examine the potential impact of ICT on development. “ ICT are cross-cutting, enabling tools. It is imperative therefore that policymakers from all areas collectively examine the impact of ICT on the development of their respective sectors, ” she said.
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The Seminar addressed various issues critical to the region such as ICT-Enabled Financial Solutions; Financing Options for ICT tasks; Security matters and 21st Century Financial Services for all, presented by line-up of industry expert speakers.
Carribbean Ministers of Government from Barbados, Dominica, Grenada and Saint Lucia, as well as senior officials from diverse industries including ICT, Finance, National Security, Health and Education attended the Seminar as ICT is a crosscutting area that will transcends various sectors.
In the spirit of strengthening ties with regional stakeholders, the CTU plus BITT signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) which provides the framework for collaboration, under which specific applications, projects and activities in the field of ICT would be undertaken.
One element of this MOU focuses on the advertising of financial inclusion by distributing Bitt’ s Mobile Wallet application throughout the Caribbean in order to financially empower every smartphone user with the ability to conduct seamless digital transactions.
BITT, represented by its President, Oliver Gale, lauded the work of the CTU in promoting the use of new technologies in this region. He stated, “ The CTU has transported themselves with the highest level of integrity and action in pursuing the ICT initiatives to provide a digital platform for your Caribbean region. ”
Participants expressed that the stimulating sessions helped improve the understanding of the potential of ICT in order to transform the financial services sector, challenge Caribbean policy makers to make use of ICT to take charge of the Caribbean’ s monetary destiny, and encourage leaders in the Caribbean’ s financial sector to embrace digital currencies and the new economic service models.
PHOTO: Bernadette Lewis, Secretary General of the CTU, delivers Welcome Remarks at the fifteenth Caribbean Ministerial Strategic Seminar, which was part of the CTU’ s ICT Week and Symposium, held in Antigua plus Barbuda.
MEDIA CONTACT: Michelle Garcia, Communications Specialist, Caribbean Telecommunications Union, Tel: 1-868-628-0281, ext. 246, Fax: 1-868-622-6523, E-mail: michelle. [email protected] int , Website: www.ctu.int/