Paul Mahung reporting… The first presenter John Carr in focusing on the topic “ Belize’s Agricultural Potentials “ reminded members of the audience of the Potentials of Toledo referred to as the Greenest District and possibilities in agricultural development especially in the production of rice, beans and corn as a main contributor to the overall development of Southern Belize and by extension the entire country.

Carr also commented on the need for people to work together in Toledo in a district he referred to as a window and land of opportunity. Another presenter Doctor Margaret Mary Noguera in her presentation on “ an economic blueprint for Belize to empower grassroots participation and development” emphasized the importance for Belizeans to appreciate what we have and look carefully at what is possible. In referring to the potentials of Toledo she highlighted this district’s 1704 sq miles of land, population of some 30,000, the district with the highest rainfall, very fertile soil, multiple large rivers, access by sea to Honduras and to Guatemala by land and sea. In her recommendations for Change, Doctor Noguera included Community Awareness, Community Organizations and Organizing, Knowledge based action plans versus Political Stirrings related to Election, Real versus imaginary needs of community, investment and production. With emphasis on Blueprint for success Doctor Noguera included to need for Practical ideas, action oriented programs, covering and meeting basic human needs namely healthcare, education and housing, Socio Cultural Identification and harmonious living among others.

The third presenter Dr. Theodore Aranda focused on the Topic “ Belize’s Economic Realities- Solutions a more vibrant Belize” and also highlighted the factors for Economic Development and the Criteria that most frequently attract International Investments namely: a corrupt free and secure nation, efficient and advanced infrastructure, Skilled Labour Force and International Relation that Enhances Good will for Trade and Commerce. The question and answer segment thereafter was vibrant with very positive follow up issues related to the three presentations and words of congratulations and gratitude to the presenters. The first economic public forum of the New Trade Center and Toledo Economic Forum Committee was organized by Leonides Sanchez.