NEWS | Wednesday, 12 March 2008
The World Bank has set up a Small States Network for Economic Development in order to encourage the sharing of best practice among small states globally.
Other objectives of the network are to promote the increased integration of the concerns and interests of small states into the policies and programs of the international community, and to undertake or support such related actions as will further the sustainable development of small states.
The secretariat of the network is located in Malta, and its operations will be funded by the World Bank. The idea of the network originated from the Maltese Government following a proposal by Professor Lino Briguglio. Professor Briguglio has been nominated by the Government of Malta to be the Maltese representative of the Board of Trustees of the Network.
The negotiations for the establishment of the Network were supported by the Ministry of Finance of the Government of Malta. The Central Bank of Malta has made available space for the housing of the Secretariat in Malta.
The second meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Network was held in Malta on Friday 29 February at the Central Bank of Malta. Among other things it formulated a work program through which the Network’s mission will be implemented.
The meeting was attended by representatives from of the World Bank and the Commonwealth Secretariat and by trustees from Barbados, Malta, Mauritius, Samoa, St, Kitts and Nevis, and Vanuatu.
On October 19, 2007, on the eve of the 2007 Small States Forum the inaugural meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Small States Network for Economic Development was held in Washington, DC.
This meeting formally activated the Network in accordance with the mandate of the 2006 Small States Forum, held in Singapore.
At the 2005 Small States Forum, the Government of Malta proposed the formation of the Small States Network for Economic Development (SSNED).
Between the 2005 and 2006 the Small States Forum under the auspices of the World Bank, worked with Malta to refine the proposal.
In Singapore, at the 2006 Small States Forum, members charged Barbados, Malta, Mauritius, Samoa, St. Kitts & Nevis, Vanuatu, the Commonwealth Secretariat, and the World Bank (who collectively comprise the Founding Members of the Network’s Board of Trustees) with reviewing a proposed governance statute for the Network, agreeing on and ratifying language of the statute, and activating the Network.
In 2007, the statute was agreed upon and ratified, the inaugural meeting of the Board of Trustees was held, and Henry Chase, the Acting Secretary of the Board reported out on these developments to the 2007 Small States Forum.
He also reported that the World Bank had fulfilled the mandate given by the 2006 Small States Forum to develop a financing mechanism for the Network, including through its own funds, to support the Network’s initial operations.
In the days since the 2007 Small States Forum, the Network has been legally registered in Malta, in accordance with Maltese law, and it has acted to foster knowledge of the Network among small states so that, in the first instance, each country can consider whether to affiliate with the Network.
12 March 2008
ISSUE NO. 526