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Fri 26th Oct 2018

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Could SVG become the Singapore of the Caribbean? Yes.

Singapore is a World Bank success story, with one of the highest standards of living in the world.

According to Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal, the very successful Singapore economic model can work in SVG to provide a high standard of living and long-term sustainable development. However, for this to work in SVG, we need a change of strategy and change of leadership.

Singapore was blessed with a highly-educated, visionary leader – Lee Kuan Yew - who transformed Singapore from a country of poverty, crime and prostitution in to one of the world’s richest countries per capita. Singapore has a very low unemployment rate and a highly educated population who enjoy a high standard of living.

All around Singapore, evidence of the success of the visionary leader, Lee Kuan Yew, is clearly seen. The memory of the late Lee Kuan Yew lives on. Lee Kuan Yew transformed Singapore from "third world to first world in a single generation" under his great leadership.

Visionary leadership has been lacking in governments in SVG since independence. SVG has been transformed from a poor country to a very poor and highly-indebted country under the incompetence of the poor leadership of the ULP regime.

Lee Kuan Yew brought in free, high-quality education from pre-school to university for all. The same is needed in SVG. At the moment, children of poorer household miss out on the opportunity of high-quality education from pre-school to university.

According to Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal BSc (hons), MSc, MBA, Leader of SVG Green Party, the economic success of SVG would change quite substantially if SVG had visionary leadership that had the knowledge of how to economically and financially transform a country.

A highly qualified Minster of Finance is needed to competently manage our country’s finance. Our nation’s scarce resources must also be competently managed to provide long-term sustainable development and a very high standard of living for all who live in SVG.

A Green government would immediately boost SVG’s chances of economic success by following Lee Kuan Yew’s economic transformation model and bring in high-quality education free for all from pre-school to university immediately. Like Lee Kuan Yew, we would bring in tough laws on crime and the causes of crime, and put forward a large budget on education as a long-term investment to revive SVG's economy.

There are many long-term disadvantages of not educating people, both to society and individuals, such as:
• the individual is not empowered to decide his/her destiny;
• foreign investors are reluctant to invest in the country as employees take longer to train;
• adult literacy education would become a full time and expensive 'recovery' process;
• the nation is always lagging behind others and never gains economic power.

Singapore is a small country, but receives a high level of direct foreign investment, because it has a highly educated and skilled population. Under the visionary leadership of a Green government, SVG’s people would be provided with the opportunity to become highly skilled and university educated. This would attract investment in to SVG and create mass employment.

According to Warrant Officer Ivan O’Neal, SVG can become the Singapore of the Caribbean and become a much richer country, but we need a change of strategy and change of leadership first – immediately.

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