Good statistics critical to Region’s post-pandemic recovery – PM Mitchell
Prime Minister of Grenada, Dr. Keith Mitchell, has called for more creative approaches to collect, produce and disseminate data, especially as the Region prepared for the long-term impact of the coronavirus pandemic. He made the charge at the Annual Meeting of PARIS21 initiative held virtually 29 March 2021, under the theme ‘Data as a Public Good: Building Resilience for a post-pandemic World’.
Prime Minister Mitchell said the post-pandemic equation had to be informed by the production of good statistics, and he specially appealed to governments, development partners and the private sector for more funding for statistics and for the Regional Strategy for the Development of Statistics (RSDS). Heads of Government approved the CARICOM RSDS in 2018. According to Prime Minister Mitchell, the financing and implementation of the RSDS, as well as the national strategies for statistics, would lead to a more resilient CARICOM.
The Prime Ministered said the theme for the Meeting captured the need for resilience which was a concept that had become a guiding principle for CARICOM Small Island Developing States. He pointed out that the concept was enshrined in the 2015-2019 Strategic Plan for CARICOM, and was also the over-arching theme of the RSDS.
“Therefore, I am happy to see resilience become a common thread as we manoeuvre this global pandemic, which has led to significant public health consequences and massive global economic and social disruption,” he said.
He, nevertheless, cautioned that building resilience following the pandemic will be challenging for Small Island Developing States.
Meanwhile, Grenada is among the countries in CARICOM that will be conducting its Population and Housing Census this year. Barbados, The Bahamas and the Cayman Islands are also preparing to conduct their Census exercises this year. The Prime Minister said the exercise will certainly be a defining moment as the pandemic has provided additional rationale for the census since it can yield the evidence to enable positive development outcomes and to build a more resilient country.
Dr. Mitchell is the Head of Government responsible for statistics in the CARICOM Quasi Cabinet. He is also a Champion for Statistics in the Caribbean