My Comments to President Clinton: "What Haiti Needs" showing on Time magazine and CNN/Anderson Cooper Blog:
Dear President Clinton, As a Haitian I am really touched by your kind worlds and your story about Haiti. Honestly I hope that everybody who really wants to help Haiti will learn about your story. As an Economist with a management background, with a specialty in Economy development (Micro and Macro projects) I think and hope this unfortunate event will open the heart of the world and put Haiti in the path of a development country. Mr. Clinton as you also know great projects always execute with plan and strategy. Therefore, my question to you is what is the strategy for the rebuilding of Haiti? Do we have a, five, fifteen, thirty, and 50 years plan for Haiti? If not, this is the time to shake up and start taking the appropriate measures.
As you said: “Haitian immigrants do very well when they come to America or France or Canada. I've always thought that given the right organization and support, Haiti could become a self-sustaining and very successful country. I still believe that.”
I also believe it too Mr. President, but in other hand, the mismanagement of the resources of this nation for more than 200 years by a small group of people who control the political power and 99% of the wealth of this country, has become a part the culture corruption. Now, after this catastrophe the world talks about rebuilding Haiti. Ok, but what resources going to be the base of the development of Haiti. Historically during the 14th century to 1950s Haiti was considered an agricultural country. Haiti used to export sugar, cotton cacao, bauxite, aluminum, etc, to different parts of the world. Today the nation is considered the poorest one in the western hemisphere.
Some studies show that Haiti is rich in minerals. Furthermore, Haiti has the most beautiful beaches, a fascinating history, and the friendliest people in the world that will make it one of the most attractive places to visit. You, Mr. President and Mrs. Clinton were witnesses of the warm welcoming of this people during .your visit in 1975 till today, even in their misery. I hope the tourism is part of the development of Haiti. This development will be possible only with a decentralization of all the economic activities in all the departments of Haiti. This will eliminate the concentration of a mass of the population in one section of this country, which will create the ghetto phenomena or “bidonvilization.” If focus is made on tourism as the first economic activity of Haiti, this country could rapidly be developed in a period of 20 to 35 years. This is my wish and my dream for my country of birth Haiti.
Daniel Austin, Economist Consultant