Subscribe to our RSS feed

Local Government Forum Centres Strategies to Boost Globalisation

BIS Photo / Gena Gibbs

Nassau, The Bahamas - Local Government authorities worldwide are promoting responsibility for sustainable economic development. The Forum is concentrating on the expansion of healthy local economies that support the tax-base of the central government and budgets of local authorities. Minister of State for Lands & Local Government, the Hon. Byran Woodside will represent the Americas and head a 16-person delegation to the Sixth Commonwealth Local Government Conference in Cardiff, Wales from March 13 to 19, 2011. The conference follows up on the success of the Grand Bahama conference held just two years ago.

"The Bahamas hosted the Fifth Conference in Freeport in May 2009 and that conference was hailed not only a success for the Commonwealth Local Government Forum but as having attracted the largest number of participants," said Mr. Woodside.

"It was a huge economic boost for the island of Grand Bahama."  

 Minister Woodside's presentation will define the role of Local Government in energising local economies and delivering the Millennium Development Goals.

"An invitation has also been extended to The Bahamas to report on the Local Government Junior Council Pilot Project at the Commonwealth Youth Forum", said Mr. Woodside.

"On Thursday, September 16th, 2010, the pilot project of Local Government Junior Council was officially launched at the Susan J. Wallace Community Centre in Freeport, Grand Bahama and provided young people with a voice in the decisions that impact their homes, schools, and community.  Students in the Pilot project have networked with community leaders, youth organisations and ordinary members from the community."  

Given the current economic climate, the forum chose the theme "Energising local economies: Partnerships for prosperous communities".  Delegates will analyse case studies and opportunities for local government practitioners to learn how to create the right environment for economic development in their home countries.

All 54 members of the Commonwealth of Nations will discuss strategies from setting overall local strategic priorities, to providing an enabling environment and efficient services for economic development to flourish.

"Some of the notable speakers are the Rt. Hon. Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator, H.E. Kamalesh Sharma, Commonwealth Secretary General, the Rt. Hon. Kamla Persad-Bissessar, Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, the Rt. Hon. Carwyn Jones, First Minister for Wales, Dame Margaret Eaton, Local Government Association of England and Wales Chairman, and Councillor Rodney Berman, Leader of the Cardiff Council", said Mr. Woodside.

Frequent Local Government topics range from local procurement of goods and services, promoting inward investment, supporting training and skills development, directly attracting jobs and investment, working with central government, the private sector and other partners to implement joint investment and job-creating strategies.