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Commonwealth Commits to Local Economic Development

Commonwealth local authorities have pledged to develop partnerships with business, the private sector and development agencies to help their communities out of the recession. The "Cardiff Consensus for Local Economic Development" also commits local government to become more strategic when developing local infrastructure, tourism and services. The Consensus was the culmination of a three day conference, organised by the Commonwealth Local Government Forum (CLGF) in Cardiff City Hall, Wales. Local and central government representatives from 51 countries looked at how partnerships in local economic development can improve efficiency and prosperity.

The Commonwealth has a vast range of experience in coping with economic change," said CLGF Chairperson Mayor Zenaida Moya-Flowers. "Canadian authorities have already been through a similar experience in the 1990s, whilst many of our African and Asian members have not felt the recession as badly as other parts of the world and are ahead of many developed countries in their approach to economic development. Everyone has lessons to learn."

The Consensus will be sent to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) for endorsement, later this year. This agreement will help drive local and national policies and practice on local economic development in Commonwealth countries.

The  CLGF biennial conference, Cardiff, Wales, was held from 15 to 18 March 2011 with the theme Energising local economies: partnerships for prosperous communities.  The Cardiff conference was attended by 500 representatives of ministries of local government, local government associations, local governments, NGOs, academics/research associations, development partners and the private sector from 51 countries.

Main Photo:-

Minister Bryan Woodside, Bahamas Minister of State Local Government,; H.E. Mr. Paul Farquharson, High Commissioner; Ms Rena Glinton, Under Secretary, Ministry of Local Government; and Mrs Joanna Newton-Russell, Deputy Chief Councillor Freeport Council.


L-R. Mrs Rosie Hudson, Councillor North Eleuthera;  High Commission Mr Paul Farquharson; Ms Audrey Burrows-Charlton, Councillor Mayaguana;  Mrs Shandika Charlton, Deputy Chief Councillor Mayaguana.

Back row:- Mr Marcus Collins, Chief Councillor North Eleuthera and Mr. Theo Neilly Deputy Chief Coucillor North Eleuthera.