Re: What the government needs to focus on
This is the sort of letter, which annoys me no end.
I gather from the letter that you Mr Hartin live somewhere in the US of A and have either visited Samoa on only a handful of times or never visited but read about us on the internet.
Our educational outcomes, however they are measured, are not substandard by any stretch of the imagination. Don’t know how you came to that conclusion but just because we can’t all speak with an American accent does not mean we do not measure up.
You throw around phrases like ‘low hanging fruit’ as if that makes your letter sound learned and academic. That phrase without any elaboration is just a throw-away line.
And to make matters worse you talk about industries (mining, wool, grains, etc) which don’t even exist in the Pacific island - those industries exist in countries like NZ and Australia and because of climate, geography, geology, etc, will never happen here. This strengthens my view that you probably haven’t been to this part of the globe.
To the crux of your letter - establishment of smartcentres here. There are many different types of smartcentres (and call centres). These two terms are now used interchangeably in the vernacular of those dealing with outsourced functions.
Unlike you Mr Hartin I am convinced that we have the labour force with the educational background and literacy skills to operate a call centre. Australia Telstra or NZ telecom can set up a call centre here.
Or such a centre can undertake service relating to one of the many government functions the Australian/NZ governments are looking to outsource. We have a big enough pool of young people who can speak better English than the Indians or Filipinos (no racial criticism here).
Our one big advantage to other countries, say Australia, is that we are two hours ahead which means that we can begin operations really early in the morning Australian eastern standard time.
Customers in Australia and NZ will find it easy to understand the centre operators because our accents are similar to the Australian/NZ accents.
Next time I see a breadfruit hanging from a tree I will remember your low hanging fruit Mr. Hartin.