In a world where e-marketing, e-shopping, and e-spending is already business as usual, it was only a matter of time before e-government and e-diplomacy became a reality. And Belize is jumping into the electronic waters with both feet. This afternoon, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs launched its official website. According to Minister of Foreign Affairs, Godfrey Smith, the site has two main components: a front end, which is your standard website, and a back end which will become a knowledge network. What the techno-speak means is that through the network, the Ministry and embassies will be able to communicate without the usual glitches and costs associated with phone calls, faxes, and snail mail.
Godfrey Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs
"Washington can see what New York is doing, New York can see what Canada is doing, and vice versa. So we hope through that means that we will be able to coordinate better the work of the Foreign Affairs Ministry. Then there is the front-end, which is a basic website which will attempt to provide as much useful information to the public. Again, treaties, frequently used instruments, press releases, information on our representation abroad, various presentations on the work of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs."
Aniki Palacio, Website Administrator
"Everyone is encouraged to access the website. As a foreign affairs website, it's caters to anything to do with international events, to do with Belize or with the region, therefore you would have press releases, news articles, documents, communiqués, papers to do with Belize and foreign affairs. Students will find it very interesting because we want to make it a very document rich, intensive, library research tool."
"This site will be a challenge. It will definitely be a challenge to maintain and update and it will definitely need someone to dedicated to it, which is why I'm here. It requires everything that is going on in Belize internationally. We have ministers, peoples trying all the time, there are conferences constantly, there are changes, there are sometimes emergencies that have to do with the region, that have to do with Belize. Belize is a member of several regional, international organisations that have meetings and caucuses which are of interest to Belize."
The address of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website is www.mfa.gov.bz.