We all want smart phones, smart TVs
or even smart homes… But what about smart islands? Modern-day innovations enable substantial improvements in government operations. This is achievable! Imagine a country with a balanced budget and enough financial funding to realize its priorities. A lack of financial funding should never be a show-stopper for government. By increasing compliance we can achieve a balanced budget without having to raise taxes or cut public services. Most of our countries deal with a budget deficit of less than 10% of government revenues. At the same time, according to the International Development Bank, the average tax evasion rate in the region is as high as 50%. Even in countries where this rate is lower, the levying and collecting of unpaid taxes and social security premiums can clearly solve the biggest government challenges. Picture how much more we could be offering our children in schools, how much better our infrastructure could be, and how the overall welfare level could be raised with funding by compliance. A Smart Island is also about smooth government processes. But improved efficiency is not just about delivering better service to citizens, it also results in lower cost of operations for the government. Such an upgrade of public services can be achieved but it requires giving government employees the right tools. Smart Islands are not imaginary but an achievable reality!