Today is the second day of a regional social security conference being held here at the Marriott Hotel in Kingston, Georgetown.
The Heads of Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Social Security Organisations have convened for their 30th meeting, organised by the National Insurance Scheme (Guyana) in conjunction with the CARICOM secretariat.
During the opening ceremony yesterday, General Manager of the National Insurance Scheme (NIS), Mrs. Holly Greaves, welcomed the delegations representing several countries across the region, and urged cooperation throughout the four days of the conference to develop their organisations collectively, and work on the CARICOM agreement on social security, which was signed in Georgetown on March 1, 1996.
That agreement was made with the intention of harmonising the social security legislation of the community’s member states.
Also addressing the gathering was Chairman of the NIS Board, John Seeram.
He advocated for continued integration of the regional insurance bodies, making special mention of the need for research in this regard, on the needs of populations.
Delivering the feature address was Minister of Education, Nicolette Henry.
She said that since the signing of the agreement on social security, there has been the technological revolution with fast digitisation and dematerialisation, moving towards the paperless and electronic transfer of texts, sound and image, which has “triggered a paradigm shift” in performance.
“In particular, professional activity as a whole, whatever the sector, has changed profoundly with the increase in the number of manufacturing robots, the widespread use of IT support in various creative design and management tasks, the complete computerisation of enterprises’ accounting, administrative and financial management, and the use of websites for communication, orders and contact,” she said.
Minister Henry stressed that there is a strong rationale for all stakeholders to step up to the challenge and close the gaps, and that investing in sustainable social security strategies is good for the people, the planet and prosperity as a region.
Other addresses during the opening ceremony of the conference were made by Secretary General of the Caribbean Community, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque; Marcelo Caetano, Secretary-General of the International Social Security Association (ISSA); Mr. Reginald Thomas, Director of the Inter-American Centre for Social Security Studies; and Mr. Michael B. Joseph, Finance Secretary at the Ministry of Finance.
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