Regional Leaders to Attend Forum 2005 in BarbadosRegional leaders and policy-makers will be gathering in Barbados for Forum 2005, a regional development policy dialogue on Managing Transformation for Competitiveness scheduled for May 5 and 6 at the Sherbourne Conference Centre. Forum 2005 is being organised by the Caribbean Forum for Development located at the Caribbean Development Bank, and will be chaired by Dr. the Hon. Denzil Douglas, Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis. Presenters will include the Prime Minister of Barbados, the Rt. Hon. Owen Arthur; the Prime Minister of Trinidad & Tobago, the Hon. Patrick Manning; the Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Dr. the Hon. Ralph Gonsalves and the Chancellors of the University of the West Indies and the University of Technology, Jamaica. Other participants will include the Secretary-General of CARICOM and the Governor of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank.The Forum is designed to foster consultation among Caribbean policy-makers, civil society and the international donor community, and will examine the critical and sometimes unique development challenges facing the Region at this time, as it grapples with the profound changes taking place in the international economy. It will also seek to develop consensus on a strategic direction and an action plan for the Region's continued development and interface with the global economy.The dialogue is expected to go beyond the challenges of achieving sound macro-economic policies, to discussing how governments, in close collaboration with civil society, including the private and labour sectors, can facilitate and promote a new attitude of productivity and economic interdependence, in a way that will enhance regional well-being. Issues to be raised include the development and effective use of the Region's human resources, the CSME as an instrument of growth and development and adjustments which might be needed in the ways in which governments, civil society and the Region's citizens interact with each other.Forum 2005 will also take place against the backdrop of new reports by the World Bank on OECS Growth & Competitiveness and Caribbean Development in the 21st Century: A Time to Chose, reflecting in part the political and economic cross-roads at which the Region currently finds itself. The reports point out that certain critical adjustments are needed in how the Region conducts its business if it is to fully integrate into the changed international environment.