Samuda Wants Public/Private Sector Partnership for Progress


Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Karl Samuda, has called for increased partnership between the public and the private sectors, in areas where it can be beneficial to the development of both sectors.
Mr. Samuda, who was speaking at the Caribbean Business Renewable Conference in at the Knutsford Court Hotel, New Kingston on Friday (July 17), said that while there are differences between the sectors, creating a regulatory framework which facilitates the expansion of opportunities is critical in going forward.
“The Government has a different set of shareholders and, as such, sometimes we tend to over regulate and frustrate the other side of the partnership, which is the private sector, who has different ways of doing things,” he said.
He said, however, that as partners, they should be able to create the appropriate database critical to their movement forward.
“We must apply modern techniques, both in the private and the public sector. If we continue to do things the old fashioned way, by not affording labour an opportunity to experience and achieve its full potential, through the introduction of applied technology, then we will forever be playing catch up and complaining that the cost of labour is too high. The cost of labour is too high if it is not given an opportunity to become more efficient, and so that must apply in the public sector as in the private sector,” he gave as an example.
Minister Samuda also acknowledged that partnerships have been created between the sectors in the past, in the areas of the construction of highways, airports, shipping services, housing facilities and telecommunications.
“These are all services that were considered in the purview of Government, which are all now either wholly owned by the private sector, or in partnership with the Government,” he explained.
He said that a framework should be laid out in which the private sector can operate, by Government releasing to the private sector all that is required to make it do what it does best, which is to earn profit and to create jobs.
“Everything that can be done to increase the ability of the private sector to earn more, will be beneficial to the Government and the people of the country. That is the driving force that will encourage us as a Government to do what we can to facilitate the expansion of the private sector. We must facilitate, not frustrate, we must regulate without intimidating those who have to interact with us,” Mr. Samuda suggested.
He called for greater dialogue between both sectors, underscoring the fact that they should work to build trust.
The conference was hosted by the Mona School of Business (MSB), of the University of the West Indies (UWI). It was held under the theme: ‘Providing Strategic and Sustainable Solutions for Public and Private Sector Organisation’.
It is aimed at providing strategic and sustainable solutions to organizations, in both the public and the private sector, by encouraging discussion on research and strategies for addressing uncertainties and opportunities created by global changes, which have also affected the Caribbean business landscape.

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