President advocates knowledge – based economy to respond to globalised world- at CXC award ceremony
Georgetown, GINA, December 5, 2013
Head of State Donald Ramotar has called for Caribbean countries to promote greater regional integration towards developing a human resource base within the region that is more responsive to the globalised world.
The President made the appeal at the opening of the 45th Meeting of the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) and 40th award ceremony for outstanding performance in the May/ June 2013 Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) and Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE,) tonight at the National Cultural Centre.
President Donald Ramotar with Minister of Education Priya Manickchand, executive members of CXC , parents, teachers and students at the opening of the 45th meeting of CXC and the presentation of awards for outstanding performances in the May/June 2013 examinations
President Ramotar said that collectively the region is too small by landmass and by population to have any strong influence on the world economy, and as such, tends to be price takers for goods and services in the world market.
The President pointed out that it is only through educational successes, and the promotion and improvement in regional performance, that the region can change this status.
He noted that many countries that have been able to achieve this objective are highly industrialised nations, and they did it through investment in their human resources not through investment in their natural resources, though the latter is important.
“Whilst natural resources can help and it is important, the most important factor for our countries’ and region’s development is our human resources, our human capital. With this in mind, I am of the strong view that what we need to do in the region is to have a focused strategy promoting and developing a knowledge- based economy,” He said.
President Ramotar pointed out that though developing a knowledge based economy goes beyond investing in tertiary education, what is required is to collectively identify specific areas where the objective is to promote new and innovative activities, services and products.
President Donald Ramotar giving the feature address at the opening of the 45th meeting of CXC and the presentation of awards for outstanding performances in the May/June 2013 examinations
“The fact is the largest gain we can make for our people and our economies is through the promotion and capitalisation of innovative activities,” he said.
He pointed out that the region already has the base that can be used to undertake research and innovation. He said regional integration for instance has not been progressing as it should as countries within the Caribbean are still thinking too individualistically about their own growth.
“We seem not to realise that as small island states we can only be competitive if we come together and build our economies stronger,” he pointed out.
The President did say however, that CXC has been one of the better examples of regional integration at work, more so where curriculum development and education standards and works level are concerned.
He said that there are other bodies that were formed that need to be further developed and need greater participation of the Caribbean people, such as the Caribbean Court of Justice.
This year, CXC celebrated its meeting and awards under the theme, “Celebrating the accomplishment, continuing in the journey.” Registrar, CXC Dr. Didacus Jules said the council is going forwards with renewed commitment and accelerated effort towards development of education in region.
He said that the Council astutely aware that what has brought it to this point will not suffice in the coming years. To this end, he disclosed that the council has brought a strategic plan to this 45th meeting for approval.
“This agenda will map the road to be travelled by CXC in its movement to the next level in face of dire weather forecast and a future obscured by uncertainty,” he said.
Chairman, CXC, Professor Nigel Harris in expressing congratulation to the awardees, parents, family members and teachers, urged that students in the region’s school system be urged to become more creative and constant workers, and filled with ethical behaviour.
He also lauded CXC, noting that the regional body has created products and achieved standards that are accepted internationally.
Also present at the ceremony were Minister of Education Priya Manickchand and Permanent Secretary Delma Nedd.
Since 1988, CXC has honoured candidates for outstanding performance in CSEC May/June examination.
In 2006, CXC introduced awards for outstanding performance in the CAPE.
CXC also presents A school of the Year Award to the school which entered the student who received the award for the most outstanding performance overall in each of the examination.