ICT related aspects of the 2014 #Trinidad and #Tobago Budget – Public Sector Investment Programme


The Minister of Finance and the Economy, Honourable Senator Larry Howai presented the 2014 Budget Statement in the Trinidad and Tobago Parliament on September 9 2013.

The 2014 Budget Statement and related documents can be downloaded at http://www.finance.gov.tt/mediaroom.php?mid=232

Over several blog posts, I’ll provide the ICT related aspects of the various 2014 budget documents. This post will focus on the key ICT related aspects of the “Public Sector Investment Programme 2014

ICT related aspects of the “Public Sector Investment Programme 2014”

“Strategic Priority – Economic Growth, Job Creation, Competitiveness and Innovation”, under “Review of the Public Sector Investment Programme 2013”

Page 32 under Science, Research and Development

CARIRI Centre for Enterprise Development

7. In Fiscal 2013, the Caribbean Industrial Research Institute (CARIRI) completed
and launched its Centre for Enterprise Development (CED), which was established at a
cost of $23.23 million. The purpose of this Centre is to build capacity and capability for
enterprise creation, consistent with Government’s strategic priorities of Economic
Growth, Job Creation, Competitiveness and Innovation. The CED provides both
accommodation and technical business advisory support services to individuals and
enterprises with innovative ideas/projects wishing to take these through the incubation
process to commercialisation. CED comprises an innovation incubator facility, a business
incubator facility, a technology incubator facility and an ICT centre.

Page 34, under Investment Promotion

86. During Fiscal 2013, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Investment as part of the establishment of the Single Electronic Window for business and trade facilitation, continued its roll out of e-services on TTBizLink. TTBizLink now offers twenty-one (21)
different e-government services with interconnectivity to more than a dozen Government departments and as at 31 August 2013, over one thousand (1000) businesses and individuals were active users of TTBizLinK.

Services provided on the continued roll out of the initiative included:

  • In April 2013 e-Export Health Certificatesfor Dairy and Dairy Products and Meat and Poultry issued by the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Food Production went live.
  • In July 2, 2013 Employers and Employees were now also able to apply online via
    TTBizLinK for their NI 1 (Employer) and NI 4 (Employee) registration numbers from the National Insurance Board (NIB) of the Ministry of Finance and the Economy.

Pages 53-55, under “Information Technology and Infrastructure”

150. Improvements to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) have
continued in fiscal 2013 with an expenditure of $105.566 million under the Public Sector
Reform Computerisation Programme. Activities carried out for fiscal 2013 included:

  • At the Police Service: server room upgrades at the San Fernando Office,
    expansion of the network at Riverside Plaza. Distribution of GPS Units to
    Tobago , and the Southern and South Western Divisions for the implementation of the mobile GPS Project. Three hundred (300) computer systems and seventy eight (78) printers were purchased, the Versadex Database has been upgraded and the software for the Firearms Database has been purchased.
  • At the Ministry of Justice for the Forensic Science Centre: Upgrade of
    electrical and cooling systems in the Server Room were completed. Installation of servers and networking equipment, switches and re-cabling of network infrastructure in main building have commenced. For the Legal Aid and Advisory Authority, network cabling has been completed and computers have been purchased and installed at the San Fernando and Scarborough Offices.
  • At the Ministry of the People and Social Development: Dell Storage Area Network was installed and the datacentre relocated, all electrical and cooling works were completed, and preparatory works commenced on the Integrated Social Enterprise Management System.
  • At the Ministry of Sport: works continued on the upgrade of the data-centre electrical infrastructure, the migration and design of Infrastructure of the Network for Head Office, design and installation of data voice networking infrastructure, the setup of video conferencing facilities and the installation of an IP-PBX phone and building intercom system.

151. The computerisation programme in Tobago continued with an expenditure of $3.8
million on the Secondary School Computerisation Programme, networking of the THA
Divisions and the computerisation and networking of the Ministry of Tobago Affairs.

152. In fiscal 2013, the Ministry of Science and Technology completed the development of smarTT – the National ICT Plan 2014-2018. SmarTT was developed following extensive Government and national consultations which highlighted the need to better utilised resources to achieve sustainable development. The Plan was developed using a 5-stage approach, Plan–Discover–Design–Report–Consult and its formulation builds on the programmes initiated under Fast Forward – the National ICT Plan 2003-2008, and the projects and initiatives implemented post fastforward.

153. The core of smarTT features five (5) thematic areas as follows:

  • Innovation and Human Capital Development;
  • Access and Digital Inclusion;
  • e-Business and ICT Sector Development;
  • Infrastructure Development, and
  • e-Government

154. Significant progress was also made on the implementation of Phase I for the establishment of six (6) Community-based ICT Access Centres by September 30, 2013. It is proposed that two (2) of the proposed centres in the Penal/Siparia/Debe and Toco/Cumana regions will be operational by September 2013.

155. The publication of Tender Notices has been implemented on the ttconnect portal.
This service provides a central, easy-to-use environment where all of GoRTT Tender
Notices will be published and made available online. Additionally, the Ministry of
Science and Technology commenced the procurement and implementation of its
Managed Services and High Availability Solutions for ttconnect.

156. In fiscal 2013, a review of GovNeTT was conducted by the Infocomm Development Authority International of Singapore (IDAi) which yielded a gap analysis for the current network and recommendations on enhancing the current investment meet the growing demands of GoRTT. Additionally, five (5) IT Manager’s Consultations were held in Trinidad and Tobago to collaborate on developing the specifications for the technical Terms of Reference for the envisioned GovNeTT 3.0.

157. The IDB assisted E-Government and Knowledge Brokering Programme continued in fiscal 2013 on the procurement of consultancy and services on over thirty (30) projects including:

  • at the Ministry of Health Mobilization has commenced for the Reengineering of the Ministry of Health 
  • at the Service Commissions Department, evaluation has been completed for the Design of an Electronic Document Management System 
  • at the Parliament discussions have been initiated on the transitioning of
    Parliament to an E – Parliament and a draft plan has been developed.


Pages 126-127, under “Information Technology and Infrastructure”

72. The improvement of the information technology infrastructure of the Public
Service will continue with the allocation of $138.1 million to the Public Sector Reform
Computerisation Programme. Activities scheduled to continue include:

  • the acquisition of hardware by the Police Service, upgrade of network infrastructure at the Police Headquarters, server rooms, Digital Finger Print Capture System, interrogator system, Firearms Management System, Versadex upgrade, network security upgrade, purchase of 600 computers and the expansion of the police network
  • the Ministry of Finance and the Economy upgrade of ASYCUDA to ASYCUDA World at the Customs and Excise Division will continue, as well as its integration with the Single Electronic Window 
  • the Ministry of Justice upgrades to the network of the Forensic Science Centre as well as the procurement of a Laboratory Integrated Management System, upgrade of cabling infrastructure for the Port of Spain Legal Aid and Advisory Office, installation and configuration of centralized, management IT Systems for the Prison Service and the establishment of an Electronic Monitoring Programme.
  • network upgrades at the Ministry of the People and Social Development, hardware and software acquisition for the continued implementation of a storage area network and the continued implementation of an Integrated Social Enterprise Management System

373.  An allocation of $3.8 million for the Computerization Programme Tobago will allow for the continuation of the Secondary School Computerization Programme, the networking of the divisions of Finance, Planning, Education, Youth Affairs and Sports
and the computerisation and networking of the Ministry of Tobago Development.

374. The Ministry of Science and Technology will continue several ICT initiatives including:

  • the STAR.TT Community-based ICT Access Centre initiative, targeted at
    reducing the Digital Divide through the implementation of fit-for-purpose
    equipped ICT facilities. It is envisaged that as many as eighteen (18)
    additional Centres will be made available in underserved communities
    throughout Trinidad and Tobago in fiscal 2014.
  • the rollout of further key enhancements to the ttconnect technology platform such as the ttconnect Foundation Services Infrastructure (FSi), whereby Ministries and Government Agencies will be able to re-use common services to rapidly develop, deploy and operate their e-Services more efficiently and the ttconnect Business Continuity Management Initiative which will establish a disaster recovery capability of the enterprise Portal Solution
  • the implementation of Phase III of the Government Wide Area Network, GovNeTT 3.0. GovNeTT provides secure high-speed connections among Government Ministries and Agencies as well as the means to work more collaboratively and efficiently to deliver enhanced and seamless services to the public.

Page 127,  Under “Communication”

376. In fiscal 2014, funding will be provided for the upgrade of the communication system of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS). In 2009, approval was given for the migration of the communication system of the TTPS from analogue to digital while ensuring full nationwide compatibility with other national security agencies. A contract was signed at value of $198.72 million of which eighty five per cent (85%) will be funded by an ExIMBank direct loan. To achieve full operation the project will be executed for a duration of 28 months and will provide:

  • increased microwave capacity for various types of data transfer
  • increased coverage for Tobago
  • integrated Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) with mapping and Automatic 
  • Vehicle Location (AVL)
  • integration of TTPS inter-operability capability with Military Tactical Radio 
  • Systems and other civilian agencies
  • an integrated CAD with E911 logging and recorder systems for public safety and protection