Improving statistics gathering in Belize Print E-mail
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Friday, 07 April 2017 00:00

On, Tuesday April 4, 2017 at the Best Western Biltmore Plaza the National Statistical System (NSS) and the Growth and Sustainable Development Strategy (GSDS) held a Monitoring and Evaluation workshop. The workshop was made possible by the Government of Belize (GOB), the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB), and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). The two-day event has the purpose of conveying information on the strategies used to implement the M & E program as well as proper use of statistical information.

Dr. Leopold Perriott, director general of National Statistical System, explained that the GSDS was established in April of 2016, to fulfill the need for a more comprehensive and efficient statistical system in our country. The NSS is vital to the SIB’s clientele as the data is used by the government, non-government organizations, private and business sectors, as well as international clients. Because of the importance of the system’s work, sustainable capacity and use needs to be integrated. Perriott encouraged sustainable use and cooperation between the data producers, the NSS, and the SIB.

In July 2016 a diagnostic exercise that established the groundwork for the workshop was established. Dr. Cassandra Rogers, the IDB’s country representative, believes that it is vital to government’s growth strategies. Because of its importance, there has to be a consensus of classifiers, norms, and indicators used by the NSS. The IDB wants to strengthen the NSS and has established trainings for the University of Belize and the SIB.
The 25th anniversary of Belize’s membership with the IDB will be marked in 2017. Since then, the IDB along with GOB have made strides to improve the lives of all Belizeans by making sustainable development and economic growth possible. This has been done through the provision of grants, research, and other technical assistance, such as the Monitoring and Evaluation workshop being held. Their goal is to measure and monitor Belize’s economy.

The start of the development took place in 2007 with the gathering of resources in the following year. By 2010, the Horizon 2030 plan had been established. Two medium term strategies, Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS) and National Sustainable Development Strategy (NSDS) were implemented with the aid of the UNDP. Both strategies were merged to form the Growth and Sustainable Development Strategy (GSDP), launched in April 2016. This marked the start of Horizon 2030.

The hierarchy of the team goes from the office of the Prime Minister and the Cabinet, to CEO Caucus, to the Ministry of Economic Development, to five technical committees, ending with the Economic and Sustainable Development Council. Their goal continues to be a new planning culture to achieve better results, maintaining a shared vision, and to better allocate and use the budget and existing resources.

Ms. Sonia Jackson, NSS Consultant, briefed the workshops attendants of the use and role of the NSS. The Structure of the Act was clarified and the SIB was called the “brain” of the NSS. The SIB monitors all tasks related to statistics, authorizes the official status and use of all data, and approves data collection, compilation, and analysis.