The Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce and the Cayman Islands Government signed an agreement in July 2011 to work together to adopt and implement the objectives and actions for five key drivers identified by more than 100 public and private sector leaders and all the major industry associations at the first Future of Cayman Forum in November 2010.
The forum identified five drivers for Cayman’s ongoing and future success which are included in the Future of Cayman Strategic Report. Each driver group is co-chaired by a leader from the public and private sectors. Volunteers from the public and private sector officials have held regular meetings with their respective co-chairs since 2011 to implement the objectives and the numerous action items that were developed. This report provides the community with an update on the achievements to date for each driver.
Public Sector: Mary Rodriguez, Chief Officer, Ministry of Education, Training and Employment
Private Sector: Samantha Nehra, Vice President, People and Development, DMS
- Ensure successful educational performance at every level.
- Ensure employers have access to a skilled workforce.
- Create an environment that promotes lifelong learning.
Support for improving educational performance:
Steady improvement in external examination results for Year 12 students in government schools (percentage achieving 5 or more Level 2 passes): 49% in 2012; 45% in 2011; 39% in 2010; 38% 2009; 30% in 2008; 27% in 2007)
Restructured government secondary education to create two 7-11 high schools in Grand Cayman, changing from a middle and high school structure Established the Cayman Islands Further Education Centre (CIFEC), offering the following new programmes for Year 12 students:
- 1. Academic Completion Programme: allows students to complete academic before graduation with re-sits of external examinations
- 2. TVET programme: provides students with internationally recognized qualifications in the following areas: Creative Media Production; Motor Vehicle Repair; Business; Information TecTechnology; Children’s Care, Learning, Development; Travel and Tourism; Hairdressing; Horticulture; Vocational Studies, Health and Social Care (HSA certified Health Aide)
- Dual-Entry Programme: an accelerated programme, which allows entry to advanced programmes while in compulsory education (Associate Degrees and A Level studies), for students who have completed all of their high school academic requirements (5 Level 2 passes , including English and Maths),
Restructured Ministry and Department of Education Services (DES), to enhance the Ministry’s policy and planning capabilities and to focus the DES on implementing policy and supporting school improvement.
Introduced a literacy strategy to tackle underachievement in English, in 2011
Introduced in 2012 a new programme and training for teachers, to tackle underachievement in mathematics, in partnership with the Cayman Islands Society of Professional Accountants (CISPA)
Established a new data unit and data strategy, to improve the collection and use of data, to help schools and students improve
Launched a range of programmes to support At-Risk students, including BEST (Behaviour and Educational Support Teams) and free, extended after-school programmes for students in primary and secondary government schools, serving over 1000 students in 2011
Developed the first National Professional Standards for Teachers
Established new High School Graduation criteria, to include academic criteria for the first time
Conducted campaigns on valuing educators and education, through private/public sector collaborations
Implemented the first phase of a National Qualifications Framework, to help employers, students and parents compare different types of qualifications
Sir John A. Cumber Primary School became the first government school in the entire Caribbean region to receive their International Baccalaureate (IB) Authorisation for the Primary Years Programme (PYP).
Launched new internationally recognized Post Graduate Certificate of Education, in partnership with the University of Sunderland, to train local graduates who want to be primary teachers
Made significant improvements to the physical plant at primary and secondary, with:
- Opening of new Clifton Hunter High School (2012)
- A new hall at East End Primary (2011)
- 2 new classrooms at Layman E Scott Senior High School on the Brac (2012)
- 4 new primary classroom blocks (2012)
Progress towards the goal of developing a world-class early childhood care and education system in the Cayman Islands:
Established an Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) unit in May 2011
Introduced a new CI Early Years Curriculum Framework
115 Early Years practitioners, from government and private sector agencies, completed new Introduction to Early Years training programme; 177 practitioners completed training programme on implementing new Early Years Curriculum Framework
Reintroduced Reception classes in 4 government primary schools in September 2012
Completed first round of baseline formal inspections of pre-schools
Launched early years website. http://www.education.gov.ky/pls/portal/url/page/mehhome/education/earlyeducation
Private/Public sector collaborations for Parent Education and Information Fair in 2011 coordinated by Early Childhood Association
Early childhood conference by CI Early Childhood Association held in October 2011, and parents’ workshop on supporting their children through life with music and play in 2012
Support for Work Readiness and Life-long Learning:
Launched a new Deloitte Work Readiness BTEC course at CIFEC , September 2012
Established 3-person Careers Advisory Unit at CIFEC, to enhance career assessments, guidance and counseling for students
Introduced Employers Forum and Careers Fair at CIFEC
Launched Passport2Success, a successful and innovative and holistic training programme, which tackles barriers to unemployment for young people
Launched a new website, www.showmethemoney.ky, in August 2012 to provide residents with information about scholarship and training opportunities that exist in the public and private sectors. The Chamber of Commerce, Ministry of Education and C.I. Students Association collaborated on the project.
Introduced new National Workforce Development Agency (NWDA); capabilities being developed for more effective assessment, training and support for Caymanians actively seeking employment and to advance a national workforce development agenda
Introduced a pilot work readiness programme in NWDA and select private sector organisations, to test Career Ready/Work Keys
Create a business friendly climate
Public Sector: Eric Bush, Chief Officer, Internal and External Affairs
Private Sector: Michael Joseph, Sales Associate, RE/MAX Cayman Islands
Create greater efficiencies in government and increase responsiveness through the establishment of procedures that eliminate inconsistency and bureaucracy.
Improve Government’s enforcement mechanisms to allow for the consistent and timely application of regulations, policies and procedures.
Increase public-private sector communication and coordination.
Introduced a five (5) day work visa to improve the ability of local businesses to engage and maintain foreign business relation;
- Implemented the direct investment permanent residence certificate, encouraging inward investment with the security of residency;
- Introduced the term limit exemption permit, allow important employee on work permits to extend their period of continuous employment;
- Developed and introduced of new Immigration online web portal that provides new functionality:
Review Business Staffing Plans
Reporting ability including export to excel spreadsheets
Application scheduling and action deadline reminders
Review cancellations and refunds status
View work permit holder dependents details
View reasons for refusals and deferrals
View conditions attached to work permits
View Anniversary work permit fee
Make payments on-line (scheduled for implementation in late 2012)
Introduced extended business hours of operation for the Passport & Corporate Office effective January 2012, bringing service availability in line with the rest of the Immigration Department’s customers service counters (4 p.m.);
- Reduced turnaround times for work permits decisions, by implementing IT enhancements to:
- Track applications and reduce bottlenecks;
- Automate quality assurance checks before a Board’s review of applications, thereby allowing the board to be more efficient;
- Introduced email communication to our customers by sending them their approved work permit licenses;
- Introduced appointments for large employers and immigration agencies improve efficiency and reduce wait times;
- Improved Permanent Residency request processing turnaround time by 87%, resulting in a reduction processing time from over two years to less than three months;
- Reduced the processing time for a work permit from more than 4 months to an average of less than 5 weeks
- Established defined policies and guidance for the processing of Visitors Extensions for persons whose term limits and work permits have expired, enabling more effective communication and processing
Use Department of Employment Relations (DER) database do reduce delays in determining if un-employed Caymanians are listed for the relevant occupation
Worked with the Department of Commerce and Investment to make each business process easy to understand and to provide some timelines average processing times for each type of application
Progression of database integration strategies between key Government departments for processing and payment of fees: Trade and Business Licensing, Immigration, Pensions and Health Insurance
Submitted the Term Limit Review Committee report to Cabinet for consideration and direction on next steps
Introduced new TRIPS system for Customs Department and harmonized tariff codes in keeping with international standards.
Extended the period for reduced duty on imports for building materials until the end of 2012 to stimulate economic activity.
Relocated Government departments and services to the new Government Administration Building which has streamlined the delivery of key Government services in a central location.
Established a Chamber of Commerce Small Business Committee to develop and recommend strategies to assist small to medium sized businesses.
Established a Chamber of Commerce Local Producers Committee to assist businesses that produce products locally.
Enhance the Quality of Life
Public Sector: Jennifer Ahearn, JP, Chief Officer, Ministry of Health, Environment, Youth, Sports & Culture
Private Sector: Pamela Small, Customer Care Manager, Logic Objectives:
- Enhance and embrace diversity.
- Promote a healthy and active lifestyle.
- Achieve a balance between environment and growth.
- Promote good governance and justice.
- Increase focus on education, family and public safety.
The Office of the Complaints Commissioner (OCC) has published a Small Claims Handbook. This can be found on the OCC website www.occ.gov.ky .
After a very successful first year, the Ministry of Health, Environment, Youth, Sports and Culture and Ministry of Education, Training and Employment have continued to partner to offer an extended after school sports programme in the Government high schools. There are plans to extend this programme to the Government Primary Schools as well.
A Director of Policy Coordination Unit, Mr. Robert Lewis, was recruited and has been working with his team on the implementation of the National Security Council’s Crime Reduction Strategy.
An Inter-ministerial Committee on Youth Affairs has been formed under the Ministry of Health, Environment, Youth, Sports and Culture, and this IMCYA has been reviewing the proposed action steps for the implementation of the National Youth Policy, 2011, in order to report to the National Youth Commission on the status of Government’s implantation of the proposed action steps.
The draft National Conservation Law is in the final review stages to incorporate the feedback received from the public over the course of the public consultation exercise. It is anticipated the consolidated draft will be ready for Cabinet consideration in the very near future.
The National Drug Council is working with the Ministry of Education, Training and Employment to prepare substance abuse prevention education for the school curriculum to be introduced as soon as possible.
The Ministry of HEYSC launched the National Youth Policy on 30th September and will be partnering with the National Youth Commission, the Department of Sports and the Youth Services
Unit to use the National Youth Policy 2011 as a framework to review the youth programmes being offered/funded.
Increased Government funding to hire additional police officers, to install a national closed circuit television system in strategic locations and to upgrade police equipment
Build a Smarter Infrastructure
Public Sector: Tristan Hydes, Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of District Administration, Works, Lands & Agriculture
Private Sector: Barry Bodden, Managing Director, Island Paving Ltd.
- Develop a national infrastructure plan.
- Invest in critical infrastructure.
The Energy Policy Committee is now working with a Consultant (Castalia Strategic Advisors) to assess and finalize the Energy Policy with an anticipated delivery to the Government by the end October 2012. It is anticipated that public consultation will be sought through the end of the year, and finalization of the Policy in the first quarter of 2013.
The Driver Group is in the process of gathering information to assist with the development of a national infrastructure development plan.
Research is currently being carried out to evaluate how other jurisdictions address the important matter of funding long term infrastructural requirements.
A Chamber contingent visited Jamaica as guests of China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) on a fact finding mission in late 2011 to tour three projects currently under construction at the same time as determining some key facts relating to CHEC and their business practices. CHEC is the company most recently in discussions with the Cayman Islands Government regarding the proposed new port facility. A full report has been made available to the Chamber membership and general public and a special BE INFORMED session was held to present the report and to respond to any questions.
Meetings held with representatives from Dart Realty to review and discuss the remediation of the George Town landfill and the establishment of a new site in Bodden Town.
Meetings were held with representatives from the Airport Authority to discuss plans to renovate and expand the Owen Roberts International Airport and Gerard Smith Airport in Cayman Brac.
- Opened new block of classrooms at Cayman Preparatory School
- Opened two new business classrooms dedicated to Carlyle and Martha McLaughlin Hall at International College of the Cayman Islands (ICCI) in September 2011
- Opened the Dr. William Hrudey observatory building at University College of the Cayman Islands (UCCI) in February 2012
- Opened a new multi-million dollar National Gallery permanent home in April 2012. The gallery hosts exhibitions, artist residencies and conducts education/reach programmes and research projects.
- Opened a community vocational training centre in central George Town near the Annex Field in the CNM Building in August 2013. Three core programmes being offered are electrical apprenticeship, air conditioning and plumbing. This project was spearheaded by Mr. Alan Moore.
- Opened new Government Administration Building in March 2012
- Redesigned Elgin Avenue roadways and pedestrian sidewalks to facilitate the opening of the new Government Administration Building
- Completed major road resurfacing in Cayman Brac
- Began construction on new hurricane shelter facility in Cayman Brac
- Opened new power plant facility on the Bluff in Cayman Brac
- Prepared the site works for Public Works Department’s Compound in Cayman Brac
- Commenced extension Esterley Tibbetts Highway and feeder roads into West Bay. When completed it will assist with traffic management storm water mitigation and long term development plan in Grand Cayman
ForCayman Investment Alliance proposal submitted to Government for consideration. This proposal includes four projects: Esterley Tibbetts highway and feeder roads; George Town Landfill remediation; new Waste Management Facility and new Seven Mile Beach Hotel
Introduced G4 technology for telecommunications and fibre optic upgrades are currently underway in several locations
Upgraded water storage facilities in Red Gate facility in George Town at the Water Authority
Upgraded arrival and departure lounges and aircraft aprons at the Owen Roberts International Airport
Developed an infrastructure growth plan for the Health City project in East End. Broke ground on the project in August 2012.
Commenced construction on Grand Cayman Weather Radar Station in East End in February 2012 to house Doppler radar facility. Project expected to be completed by 2013 hurricane season.
Revised Caribbean Utilities Company feed in tariffs structure for Consumer Owned Renewable Energy generation (CORE) programme in September 2012
Introduced new Traffic Law and Regulations in September 2012 which permits the licensing of electric cars in the Cayman Islands
Commenced discussions to upgrade port and cruise facilities in George Town, West Bay and Spotts
Completed two major private sector distribution centres for food and beverage supplies
Diversify the Economy
Driver Group co-chairs:
Public Sector: Jonathan Piercy, Director, Department of Commerce and Investment
Private Sector: Johann Moxam, General Manager, Merrill Lynch Bank & Trust Co. (Cayman) Ltd.
Promote business development as a vital strategy for Cayman’s future success.
Leverage Cayman’s legal and physical infrastructure.
Attract new industries and grow globally competitive business, investment and tourism that can create new jobs and business opportunities.
Focus groups will be established for various industry sectors that are being targeted for diversification (medical, tourism, film, renewable energy and reinsurance). An online survey is also being developed to gather information regarding the sectors targeted for diversification.
BE INFORMED sessions were held to share information about the Cayman Enterprise City Special Economic Zone and the Health City Cayman Islands.
The fourth trade mission to Panama organised by the Chamber in partnership with Government (Ministry, Department of Tourism, Cayman Airways) in March promoted travel and trade links between Panama and Cayman. Cayman Airways launched a direct service between Grand Cayman and Panama from June until September.
Broke ground on the Health City Cayman Islands project in East End which paves the way for medical tourism development in the Cayman Islands
Launched Cayman Enterprise City Special Economic Zone. As the only Special Economic Zone of its kind in the world, CEC includes a unique cluster of industry specific parks encompassing Cayman Internet & Technology Park, Cayman Biotechnology Park, Cayman Commodities and Derivatives, Cayman Outsource Park and Cayman International Academic Park and Cayman Enterprise City.