Saint Lucia has commenced work on the formulation of a National Development Plan (NDP); however priority will be given to the preparation of a Medium Term Development Strategy (MTDS) which will be the key element in terms of national planning. The Ministry of Economic Development, Housing, Urban Renewal, Transport and Civil Aviation is responsible for national planning. As such, this Ministry plays a pivotal role in the coordination of development planning; mobilization of public resources; and ensuring effective accountability for the use of such resources for the benefit of all stakeholders.
Its mission is to oversee and coordinate the planning and management of the country's financial and economic resources, including those from external sources, utilizing suitable consultative mechanisms to deliver a high quality of service to the public and to contribute to the formulation of appropriate polices, in order to accelerate social and economic development. Department of Economic Development within this Ministry is charged with the responsibility for national development planning.
The first attempt of long term planning in St. Lucia was made by the National Vision Plan 2008. From this process The National Vision Commission was established in 2014 by a Cabinet Conclusion. The Commission was created to lead a consultation process aimed at developing a national vision and accompanying development plan for Saint Lucia. The Commission completed 24 months of consultations in the various communities around Saint Lucia and among civil society.
Preparations for the MTDS 2018 -2021 have commenced. During this process the aim is to define National Goals, National Objectives, strategies and establish measurements: indicators and targets that will serve as a monitoring framework that outlines the indicators aligned to each National Goal and Outcome.
The Plan is currently in its second stage. The first stage consisted of documents review, situation analysis and technical consultations. The second is partially completed and it consists of defining pillars and strategies. The last stage is to be completed and it takes into account meetings of technical workgroups to move from outcomes to strategies, coalition of medium term strategies, submission of Plan to policymakers for adoption and ratification, development of monitoring and evaluation framework, and stakeholder consultation and dialogue.
The various elements of the National Planning System should be guided by the MTDS/NDP. A participatory approach should be employed in preparing the MTDS and NDP to ensure that the views and ideas of all stakeholders (public, private, NGOs, CBOs, civil society, academia, statutory organizations etc.) are incorporated. This is essential to ensure ownership of the plan and successful implementation of the various strategies and actions. The MTDS and NDP should also inform the various strategies outlined in the strategic/sector plans of the various line agencies. Additionally, the various sector plans would serve as a guide for Agencies to develop and prioritize projects and programs, which would ultimately feed into the Government’s public sector investment programs and successive annual budget estimates.