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Jan 21, 2011

Why isn’t Belize a part of major Central American projects?

wilfred 'sedi' elrington

Although the initiative will have positive results, Belize is handicapped in its competitiveness because it has higher labor, utility and telecommunication costs than other regional countries.  The Inter-American Development Bank has embarked on a Central American Electricity interconnection project that would provide cheap power from Panama to Mexico. Belize, however, is not a part of that initiative. Neither is it part of the IDB’s project that would lead to cheaper telecommunications and a disaster relief fund for Central America that could provide millions of dollars within days of a catastrophe. But while at the Aid For Trade conference, Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington indicated that participation in the regional electricity project may eventually become a reality.

Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs

“My own information that I have had really is that there is a plan for us ultimately to become tied in with the electricity generating project. That’s a whole central American thing going all the way from México down, and the plan is certainly for us to become a part of it but it takes time for that to be done, but certainly we are in negotiation with the countries involved to have that done. I’m not sure with respect to the disaster and mitigation activities; maybe the C.E.O. knows more about that than I do.”

Alexis Rosado, C.E.O., Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade

Alexis Rosado

“Yes, I must say I am impressed with your knowledge of the projects and programs in the region. I wish that more of the public would be more aware of it. We are members of the Mesoamerican projects that you referred to and there are projects in the pipeline to connect us to the electricity network and also the telecommunications; that is slower but that is partly due to the fact that the utility companies were the ones that were leading in those regional activities and for some reason or the other we were not being represented. But we have started to be represented so much so that Belize now holds the chairmanship of the Mesoamerican program, the ones that you referred to that include all of these activities. In fact the chairmanship will be handed over to us at the end of the month in Colombia. With respect to the disaster facility, I understand that we are party to a similar program with CARICOM and that might be the reason why we are not members of the facility in Central America.”

Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington

“Certainly the high cost of our labor, the high cost of electricity and energy are part of the problem that we are faced with. Of course we are also faced with the fact that we don’t have skilled personnel. We have expenses, transpiration, poor harbor facilities—not efficient. So we have a number of weaknesses that prevent us from being as efficient and as competitive as we can be. The good news is that this program launch today is in fact designed to see how we can get the resources both financial and technical to remedy those situations. That is what this launch is all about today. We recognize the limitations and we are working assiduously to correct them.”

Belize is the first CARICOM country where the strategy is being introduced that will eventually be used in the rest of the region.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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14 Responses for “Why isn’t Belize a part of major Central American projects?”

  1. rod says:

    the whole thing boils down to this gov. being useless and inefective in every sector of life in the country even the central american goverments look at belizes gov. as a joke and as a useless gov. time to change time for new leadership we cannot waste any more time and patience on a gov. that is corrupt impotent and useless que viva la revolucion.

  2. arturo says:

    why we are not include in the central america projects because from day one we are being call a caribbean country which we are not but the so call dum politians never did what they had to do even today we still have some dum fools that believe that we are aa island in the caribbean we eveen got some really fools that say we can say belice which is in spanish to belize thats one of the major problems facing us too day because wwe can indentify our self due to some fool politians we need to stop these crape any indentify who we really are fools

  3. chabelli says:

    These people talk so much bull while the poor gets poorer;clearly we do not want to become another urban slums prevails in San Salvador and Tegucigalpa where women seell their bodies for a commodity-get real please
    or continue globe trotting.

  4. RadicalBelizean says:

    I have heard such poor excuses but this takes the…………………….I hate talking down Belize but when I see these incompetent people opening their mouths it makes me very angry.

    As usual Belizeans lost out.

  5. The People Had Enough says:

    I don’t care what party gets initiatives like this done, as long as it gets done, give credit where it is due, when you see GOB making a positive move, support them, when the screw up (which UDP been doing more often than not) bash their heads in and let them know they are screwing up. At least they are working on getting this off the drawing board.,,so, kudos.

  6. vigilante justice 316 says:

    with all that talk about the schollarship the taiwanese gov give to belizeans was there anyone who went to learn electrical engineer? if not then once again the gov has failed. With opportunities like that u should encourage ppl who have an interest in the fields we lack man power in, to take up the scholarships. The man said we lack technical personnel so their is a need for gov to move toward promoting higher learning in fields that will help with our immediate needs as a country. The education ministry need to work on this need.

  7. Indy says:

    There are lots of scholarships out there for whatever career you want. Gov’t should be spoon feeding you all the time. You have to look for them. World Bank, Ford Foundation…ect give scholarships every yr. We must be proactive, especially those educated ones.

  8. el alcalde says:

    Anyone has seen an intelligent person in the Gov.? All dunce!

  9. cayobway says:

    I do agree with indy, bealizeans need to start looking out for themselves, in trying to better thier social and economic values, there are scholarships avialable to those who seek, the only problem that we see in belize is that the people who are qualified are not being utilized simply because they are not affiliated with the ruling party, even if they are hired and are doing a great job, as soon as there is an election they are removed and replaced by some dumba$$ who is the ministers good friend. so how can we get ahead if we follow this same pattern after every election, i personally know a lot of people who are capable of continuing the progress in belize if the Jacka$$ politicians would only learn to realize thier potentials instead of a color affiliation.

  10. Hercules says:

    I think people are tired of hearing over and over that this present GOV needs time even though they have all the time they need and they still cannot achieve anything productive other than for their pockets. . From the time Dean O. Barrow strong the control of our telecommunications, he is only caring about his immediate family members & business associates & so he cares very little for the company to provide also for the poor. The bigger the shares the bigger for theirs. The people are no fools & this bunch of villains reaping the poor Belizeans are already packing to leave (2 more years fellas).

  11. Hercules says:

    I think people are tired of hearing over and over that this present GOV needs time even though they have all the time they need and they still cannot achieve anything productive other than for their pockets. . From the time this GOV strong the control of our telecommunications, he is only caring about his immediate family members & business associates & so he cares very little for the company to provide also for the poor. The bigger the shares the bigger for theirs. The people are no fools & this bunch of villains reaping the poor Belizeans are already packing to leave (2 more years fellas).

  12. daveyt says:

    I agree with rod – This government is, and has been for nearly 30 years, just play acting at governing a country. Whichever party gets into power, and is handed the purse strings, good governance, serving the people, transparancy. fighting poverty and all the other empty pre-election promises go out of the window and onto the garbage, untill the next election is due.

    All Belizean politicians have ever done is get richer at the majority of Belizeans expense. Running a little low on cash? No problems – increase GST or Business tax etc. The they can afford brand new $150,000 SUV’s for their wives to go shopping in!

    Belize is a political joke, not only in the region, but accross the world, and the politicians are so corrupt, that even the worst ‘Banana Republics’ don’t want to dirty their hands by having dealings with them!

  13. Indy says:

    5 yrs is not enough time for a government to do things. Each government has its own way or strategy to bring about development, and it take a while for a government to get into the routine. This is seen in the USA where things supposedly move faster because of technology, super educated people…ect Meanwhile, the PUP has been in power for about how many year before this new government? No development was seen, as a matter of fact on the last days of their administration they were using Venenzuelan money to buy votes ( got this from neighbor they got angry because they did not get any $ so they decided to vote UDP jajajaaja). So let us be careful to pin point parties.

    Instead during this upcoming election let us ask our politicians that will be knocking on our door to show us their vision, plan and to how they will bring about development to our communities and to our country. This is not being pessimistic. This is challenging and letting them know that our vote is not easy any more and that we value that right. They have to work for it now.

  14. Earl Grey says:

    WHEN THE LEADERS HAVE NO VISION………………..THE PEOPLE WILL PERISH!!!

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