Tech in Trinidad and Tobago Budget 2022
I didn't plan to watch the budget presentation but I did. Normally I just wait for the budget documents to hit the website afterwards. I listened from start to finish and paid attention to comments on the youtube livestream I was watching. My overall impression? I wanted to see new ideas and innovation. I wanted to see a focus on technology. The comments on the livestream let me know that there is plenty bias and persons are towing their party's line. I hold no allegiance to any political party and I am ready to criticise and commend both sides. I am ready to work with anyone that wants good for Trinidad and Tobago. Since I started voting, I have voted for 3 different political parties.
The tech related things that stood out to me from the budget are digital developer hub, national e-identity platform, tax breaks for tech startups and digital wallets. The opposition has pointed out that the Ministry of Digital Transformation has no website. I am waiting patiently for their website and online presence. They do have a facebook page that I interact with. What do we have? We have the budget, national ICT plan, a dedicated ministry, the recovery plan and igovtt. What I would love to see is a structured system to give feedback and make suggestions. Let's hear from the people. What new ideas do you have? What innovations do you propose?
I am very interested in the Digital Developer Hub mentioned in the budget. I asked the following question in the Caribbean Developers group
From TT budget document (pg 68) talks about the Digital Developer Hub. Your thoughts? How do you imagine this hub will work? How do you want this hub to work?
Some comments are saying that this is something best left to the private sector. I don't see it that way. I think it is best left to anyone who wants to do the work. So let me answer my own question. I think it is a good idea, I am glad the government is proposing to do this and I am ready to participate. I imagine the hub will be a meeting space for developers. I imagine developers will decide how the grouping functions and what we get out of it. The hub could be a major resource and support for developers. This could very well be related to Tamana Park being the Silicon Valley of Trinidad and Tobago. Local developers can be foreign exchange earners and can save us foreign exchange.
What tech projects would I like to see? What could they have included in the budget? I would like to see us making use of Tamana Park. I would like to see more locals using .tt domains. Maybe government can work with TTNIC to make the necessary improvements. I would like to see more tech startups and us looking at improving ease of doing business and receiving payments. I would like to see every ministry mandated to provide 10 open data datasets in the next coming year. I would like to see etextbooks in schools. I would like to see more hackatons. I would like to see satellite internet options facilitated and encouraged through TATT. I would like to see several tech labs across Trinbago. I would like to see a workflows platform developed for the public service. I could go on some more but I will stop myself here. Technology is a pillar of any modern society. Let's use tech to promote country development, earn us money and save us money.