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Dec 5, 2016

Caribbean Human Development Report Launched

The BOOST Program through which needy families receive a conditional cash transfer from government has been cited as a success in the region. This is according to the Caribbean Human Development Report 2016 which was released today by the U.N.  But that is this data is well before Belize plunged into a recession. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

The Caribbean Human Development Report 2016 was launched in Belize today.  The publication endorsed by the United Nations Development Programme has been in circulation since the nineties and has looked at various subject matter from a human development perspective.  “Multidimensional Progress: Human Resilience Beyond Income” bares new figures and sheds light on key policy recommendations that can help Caribbean countries achieve the 2030 agenda for sustainable development, including the Sustainable Development Goals.

 

Kenroy Roach

Kenroy Roach, Regional Advisor, UNDP

“When you look at the last decade, what we’ve found is that the region has not done well on the economic growth side.  We find very sluggish economic growth performance with a few exceptions.  Belize is actually one of those exceptions until recently.  We saw the primary commodity economies in the region: Guyana, Belize and so on posting positive economic growth, but for the most part the region has not had positive [growth].  So we think that going forward the region needs to focus on how to improve its inclusive economic growth performance.”

 

The document suggests that Caribbean countries need a new generation of public policies to maximize on the economic, social and environmental aspects.  In Belize, the BOOST program is lauded for its success in assisting the needy.

 

Judith Alpuche

Judith Alpuche, C.E.O., Ministry of Human Development

“It’s a classic conditional cash transfer program that has proven to be successful all over the world really, starting in Latin America but certainly it has proven to be a solid program; solid program being throughout the world.  We were able to make the best of cooperation in designing our social safety net and designing our program and what we have been able to achieve is to put in place a targeting mechanism so that we can really be objective in the collection of beneficiaries.  And so no longer does somebody decide who is on this program, but people there’s an interview done, there’s a mathematical algorithm that really determines whether or not you’re eligible based on certain scoring that relates back to our poverty levels.”

 

The report, generated by the Human Development Report Office of UNDP, are ensured of editorial independence by the United Nations General Assembly.  The findings were the subject of a forum during which experts from government, civil society and the UN discussed the relevance of the findings to the local social and economic context. Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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