Owen Arthur at SER-symposium

POSTED: 05/19/14 10:25 PM

St. Maarten - Owen Seymour Arthur, former prime minister of Barbados and present Member of Parliament is the keynote speaker at the second annual symposium of the Social Economic Council (SER). In his speech, Arthur will connect the theme of Inclusive Development with our society based on the experiences of Barbados.

As Barbados’ fifth prime minister. Arthur was the first Caribbean head of state who was also an experienced economist. He graduated from the University of the West Indies in 1971 and holds a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Economics and History. He completed his Master of Science (MSc) in Economics in 1974.

According to the United Nations Development Program’s 2013 report, Barbados continues to have the highest Human Development Index (HDI) of any Caribbean country,

Barbados is ranked 38th in the world in HDI, which examines factors including education, life expectancy and income, among others. Barbados’ ranking is ahead of countries such as Poland, Chile, Lithuania, the United Arab Emirates and Portugal.

The theme of the symposium “Inclusive development” is currently a wide discussed topic   and is high on the agenda of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The term Inclusive Development falls in line with SER’ objectives. As anadvisory and consultative body of employer’s representatives, union representatives and independent experts, SER aims to help create social consensus on national and international socio-economic issues/topics.The SER is guided by the objective of social prosperity in its widest sense, this encompasses not only material progress, but also social progress.

The keynote address will be followed by a panel discussion moderated by master of ceremony, Cedric Peterson. The panel is comprised of representatives of the public and private sectors, managing partner and co-founder of Computech, Jean Arnell, National Development Plan representative, Drs. Okama Epke-Brook, founder and Directress of the Belvedere Community Foundation, Jessica Richardson and Collaborative Foundation (Samenwerkende Fondsen) representative, José Verschueren-Sommers.


The SER symposium will take place tomorrow at the Sonesta Maho Beach Resort & Casino. The title of the symposium is Inclusive Development; for a better Sint Maarten. The event will start at 8 am and will conclude at 1 pm. The organization of the symposium is covered by Dutch development funds managed by Usona.

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