On November 18, 2021, I watched the Palau “MOF 2021 Economic Symposium – Forging New Pathways” live via YouTube. I was in awe with all the possible solutions to Palau’s potential growth and where it stands at present time.

There is no denying on the influences of other countries in Palau, from the Germans, Spaniards, Japanese.  Americans and other countries in smaller scale, nevertheless still an influence. From the vast cuisines to the growth of different businesses, predominately by other ethnicities.

Growth is good, but where do the locals fit in this wealth. It’s not that the locals don’t want to, no one wants to live their entire lives with handouts. Palauans are a society that pride themselves in their own ingenuity, but a lot lack either the proper training or education to fit in the modern expectation of job skills needed to be gainfully employed.

To achieve a goal of a sustainable nation, the people must be on equal footing, otherwise the living scale will tip toward the few educated and privileged and the rest of the population will continue to struggle, which will pull the health and welfare of the nation to the pits of hell.

The social issues that impact the livelihoods of the Palauan nation must be addressed at the root cause, then it’ll be easier to treat the symptoms. Growth is going to be a never ending issue if the symptoms of the apparent issues are bandaged and the root cause keeps getting deeper.

One of the topics discussed at the Economic Symposium was addressed by a couple of bankers. What got my attention was the reason people were denied when applying for loans and they are as follows: 1. Business Financials don’t make sense or are superficial 2. Poor Credit History 3. Insufficient Securities

And in the same breath, the banker mentions talking to a client about the different business opportunities that could be done in Palau and went on to mention that there were infrastructure projects totaling $561million dollars.

Good financial reporting is easy for people that have been educated, trained or has had experience in doing it. Financing can be a daunting task for the average person without the right skills.

Collaborative efforts between the government leaders, traditional leaders, state leaders, educators and bankers are needed to tackle the different issues that hinders the economy growth in Palau and the health and welfare of its people.

Helping the community to understand good governance through teaching, training and enhancing their knowledge allows people to feel connected and included in the decision making process that governs their livelihood and will empower them to improve from their current state.

People’s health are very much connected to their social status. If people can’t improve their livelihood, their health is affected in more ways than one. Palau cannot see or experience its optimal growth without the growth of all its citizens not just the privileged few.

We live in a world of advanced technology and as such, information on business opportunities, workshops, seminars and education to skill people, so they can have a higher chance of being gainfully employed or start up their own businesses and manage their living conditions better can reach people near and far.

The Palauan people are tied to their motherland like a baby’s umbilical cord to the mother in the womb. The nation’s prosperity is connected to its people. Social inclusion and connectivity through shared prosperity will make Palau soar to unimaginable heights.

Happy Blessed Thanksgiving to All

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