Planning of Trinidad and Tobago: National Development Strategy 2016-2030
The Ministry of Planning and Development (MDP) is responsible for the formulation of the National Development Strategy (NDS). One of the first steps in developing the NDS was to conduct an assessment of the country’s performance over the last ten years, and its current development progress as well as the possible impact of future trends. Trinidad and Tobago’s performance was also compared to that of selected countries. Technical advice and comments were sought from various experts including those of the Economic Development Advisory Board and the National Tripartite Advisory Committee. This consultative process also included international and regional development agencies such as the United Nations Development Programme, the Caribbean Development Bank, various Ministries and Departments, the academy and the private sector. The NDS draws on the Comprehensive Economic Development Plan (CEDP) for Tobago (2013‒2017) which itself was grounded in the context of Vision 2020. The NDS builds on the vast consultation process of Vision 2020, which involved over 80 national consultations and 27 sub-committees comprising academia, the public and private sectors and civil society. In so doing, the Vision 2020 National Vision was primarily retained given its representativeness and validity. However, modifications were made to include relevant issues like climate change and renewable energy, thereby creating an enhanced National Vision to 2030. It was a collaboratively process that involved Ministries and Departments and also the National Goals were aligned to the SDG.
Trinidad and Tobago National Development Goals comprises short-, medium- and long-term goals to coincide with three 5-year planning periods between 2016 and 2030, which are: 2016-2020; 2021-2025; and 2026-2030. The short- and medium-term goals all coalesce towards meeting the long-term goals which in turn, reflect the outcomes of the five Development Themes. There are 16 long-term goals that span 2016-2030, 16 medium-term goals that span 2016-2025 and 24 short-term goals that span 2016-2020. At the operational level, Ministries and Departments will be required to prepare their ministry and department development plans in collaboration with key stakeholders. In preparing their plans, programs and projects, Ministries and Departments must take into consideration the sector within which they operate and Vision 2030 Goals in order to ensure consistency with the national development agenda. In so doing, Ministries and Departments will no longer operate in ‘silos’ and will adopt an integrated and a ‘whole of Government’ approach to implementation since national development objectives are invariably cross-cutting. In addition, programs, projects and activities must be based on sound, robust criteria and data, and must be aligned to the national goals contained in the NDS. Ministries and Departments will also be responsible and accountable for implementing their plans. The coordination of the implementation will be in charge of the MDP.
Monitoring and Evaluation
Successful implementation of the strategic initiatives for achieving the Vision 2030 goals will require emphasis on performance and measuring results. As such, the National Performance Framework (NPF) 2017‒2020 will be developed and is expected to outline the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to measure the achievement of the Vision 2030 goals as set out in the NDS and by extension, the indicators and targets pertaining to the SDGs. Performance Frameworks at the level of individual Ministries and Departments will be required to facilitate monitoring and evaluation of their ministry/sector plans.
Connection with sectoral planning
The sectoral agencies take part in the process of formulation and implementation, collaborating closely with the MDP.