3 “feasible initiatives” that could lead to economic growth in Haiti

Haiti, which is reeling from the assassination of its former president Jovenel Moïse, should “focus on economic growth” to end “chronic” political dysfunctions and poverty, writes Noah Smith for Bloomberg.

Smith suggested the country launch three “doable initiatives” that some of its Caribbean neighbors have adopted. His first idea is to stimulate Haiti’s tourism industry, which he says should be done by “gradually creating small oases of security” and by building infrastructure near these enclaves with foreign funding. Smith acknowledges that there would be a backlash at this step as it would mean wealthy foreigners would have access to “Haiti’s beautiful beaches while ignoring all locals except people who work in their hotels,” but he thinks that securing long-term benefits is crucial.

Regarding agriculture, Smith writes that Haiti should look to the Jamaica Rural Economic Development Initiative as an example of how to improve crop yields and rural incomes. In addition, he says, “the modernization of small farms can help make them robust against the frequent natural disasters on the island.”

Finally, Smith pleads for Haiti to become “a tax haven”. Like Smith’s tourism strategy, this idea is not without controversy as it would help wealthy businesses “deduct their tax bills” at a time when many governments seek to unite to end in practice, but “it would bring in much needed money.” and could help develop a national habit of protecting property rights. Read Smith’s full article on Bloomberg.

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