THE EDITOR: The world is changing fast. Those who change with it will benefit while others will struggle. In my lifetime I envisaged a day when water would be bottled and sold, and it came to pass. I can list the many other predictions that came to pass but that is not the subject for discussion now.
On this Republic Day, our nation can position itself favourable to meet the challenges of tomorrow or continue along a path where, despite being one of the wealthiest Third World countries, we struggle with the basics like a reliable water distribution network and good roadways.
In tomorrow’s world:
* The era of large office workplaces will be greatly reduced as technology allows more individuals to work from remote places. The companies and governments that make policies to adjust to this new norm will have a positive advantage.
* Quick-change batteries and gas canisters for vehicles will become the norm. Again, companies that invest not so much in a more reliable battery for longer hours of charge but one that allows for quick replacement, like a screw-type, fully-charged canister battery that can be replaced at remote stations will be the ones with the competitive edge.
Similarly for trucks and heavy-duty machinery, quick-change gas canisters will replace the use of diesel as the world gets more environmentally sensitive.
* Already there are massive changes in the construction industry. New lightweight components that allow for faster and less costly homes and offices are replacing wood and concrete.
* Nations would face unprecedented challenges associated with climate.
These changes are inevitable and will challenge nations to move away from traditional structures. Those who succeed will lead the way in a new tomorrow.
In that tomorrow, the nations with the best drone technology that can put thousands of remote-control sophisticated drones on the battlefield instead of foot soldiers and tanks will be the ones that have the edge in security.
The nations that use their satellites and space stations to monitor, track and destroy missiles moments after deployment will have the edge on those that rely on technology that was state-of-the-art years ago.
In a new TT, that move to a better tomorrow must start with the immediate end of sectarian and racial voting patterns.
It requires new laws that take away the ability of politicians and government officials to share the resources and services of the State to sections of the society that they consider supporters of their policies.
It requires that we attract the best from among us here and abroad to contribute towards long-term development and economic growth.
TT is no different from many other places in the world where the resistance to change is endemic. Nonetheless change is inevitable. It is the adjustment to change to this new world anchored in love for each other, equality, fairness and patriotism that will determine the TT of tomorrow.