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Private sector instrumental in Point Lisas development too

Saturday, February 10, 2018

I refer to Mr Mariano Browne’s attempt to re-write the early history of Point Lisas in his opinion piece in the Guardian of February 8, 2017. I think the best way to refute his statement is by quoting directly from Professor Ken Julien, writing in the Energy Chamber’s 60th Anniversary book published in 2016: “Our institutional memory is at worst poor or at best not fully developed.

“It is recognised that we are a young country less than 6o years old, but possibly because of this, substantially more efforts and resources should be directed to improve the documentation of our history.

“This deficiency in our cultural makeup can be tested by a simple example. If I were to pose the question to anyone under 25 years old to identity the contribution made by R Montano, B Gopaul, Carlton Mack, H Fraser, E Warner, WS Knox, AG Borel and Sydney Knox, at best there will be some response indicating that these were prominent people in the business world and very likely with absolutely no reference to Point Lisas.

“There may be some vague reference to the work of the South Trinidad Chamber of Industry and Commerce in the ’70s but with no identification of that body with the development of the Point Lisas Industrial Estate.

Yet a simple review of documentation surrounding the growth and subsequent development of Point Lisas will highlight the role of the then South Trinidad Chamber of Industry and Commerce and the pioneers who had a vision, indeed even an obsession of developing an industrial port at Point Lisas.

These pioneers, under the umbrella of the South Trinidad Chamber of Industry and Commerce vigorously pursued this vision and were able to convince several individuals not only to buy into this vision but to put “their money where their mouth is.”

I am not sure why Mr Browne wants to diminish the role of the local private sector in the history of Point Lisas, but the facts speak for themselves.



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