Going back the memory lanes of WOH

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Going back the memory lanes of WOH

Post by T-dodo » Sat Apr 23, 2005 11:44 am

This was written on Windows on Haiti, according to Microsoft Word that I originally used to draft it, on December 11, 1999. Guy had asked to provide standards and measurements to evaluate progress in Haiti or to gauge the effectiveness of a government. Here is my answer below. I was dreaming at the time. But, there were reasons to be hopeful in 1999. Politically, we seemed moving toward democratic stability.

[quote]Here is my attempt at answering your question. Sorry, I missed it the first time.


Any measurement of the effectiveness of the government must be seen through meeting short term and long term goals. The latter should be evaluated based on the structure established towards meeting those goals that will not be achieved many decades or generations later. A five-year stellar performance that does not establish the foundation for continuing change
in the future is misleading. But for your purposes, I will stick to your five-year measurement.

a. Economy

1. GDP
GDP growth over five years should average 20%. According to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) 3rd Quarter 1999 report, Real GDP was $3.5 billions equivalent (G59B, Gourdes 59Billions, all dollar signs are U.S.$) in 1998, and grew by 3% over 1997 1.1%. This kind of growth is expected from economies near capacity of production, not Haiti where the factors of production are so underutilized and not maintained. (Dominican Republic (D.R.), in comparison, grew by 15% and had a GDP of $15B). The room for growth in Haiti is high which explains why I should expect the economy to double in five years.

2. Exports
Merchandise exports should double, from $285M ($ millions) to about $600M, mainly coming from light manufactures and assembly plants operations using unskilled labor from urban areas and expanding to the country side.

3. External Debt

The debt s
hould grow, as it will be necessary to finance the economic boom partially with debt since our sources of self-generating capital are limited to the foreign assets of the commercial elite. It will also be an indication that foreign creditors approve the job being done. As per EIU, 1997 external debt was $1.05B. It should grow to $2B, if you compare it to the $4B of D.R.

4. Inflation
Consumer price annual inflation should average below 10% for the five years. But we may be able to tolerate a little inflation as part of the cost of growing rapidly.

5. Unemployment
Underemployment is estimated at 60%. That figure could be around 50% after five years of real work. Though it sounds ambitious, almost 400,000 new jobs, there is so much for improvement that the first real attempt will show a lot of growth.

b. Natural Resources & Infrastructure

1. Land
According to EIU, only 60,000 ha of forest area remained in Haiti in 1993 or 2% of the total land area. I would expect that
after five years of a competent administration, that figure should jump to 10% or 300,000 ha through projects of reforestation. I a not sure how realistic is that objective, but experts can tell us.

2. Roads
According to EIU, there were 3,200 km of roads in 1989, with 600km of it only paved, that's 20%. This figure is probably worse now, after all these years of neglect. I would expect the number of kilometers of road to increase by at least 20% to about 4.000 km and the percentage paved to 40% or 1,600km. We should at least have an embryo of road maintenance operations in place by that time.

c. Justice
I would expect the number of judges to double and the number of pretrial detentions reduced by 50%. You can correct me if I am wrong, but the judicial system is the only sector that has made some real progress in the past ten years. Though, there is a lot of work to be done there, I think they already rocked bottom and on the path to change, though the pace is too slow.
d. Literacy
I should expect adult literacy to jump to 50% from the estimated 43% in 1996, and children enrolling in primary schools to jump to 70% from 56%.

e. Health
In 1995, there was one doctor per 10,000 inhabitants. I would expect that figure to jump to more than 2. I would wish life expectancy to increase to 60 from 57years from birth, and infant mortality to 70 from 85 for each 1,000 births.

f. Administration
After five years, we should have a competent and adequately staffed Bureau of Statistics that provide accurate and timely data on the country. That office should have branches in the major cities of the country, such as Cap Haitien, Gonaives, Cayes.

We should be able to double tax collections from its current status.

Public opinion should be shifted towards more production and increase by at least one more hour per day, the amount worked by the average haitian, either at work or home. [/quote]

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