Haiti: 2020

“You can see opportunities in awful situations”.

The view of one senior man from the UN on the rebuilding of Haiti, as politicians from around the world gathered to talk about it.

The meeting in Montreal concluded that it’ll take at least a decade, although the details (including the budget) are yet to be thrashed out.

There’s already talk of renewing the country – not merely rebuilding it – so it can resist the ravages of earthquakes and hurricanes in future.

The Prime Minister wants rebuilding to be “by the Haitians, for the Haitians“, although they won’t be able to pay for it on their own.

There are all sorts of ideas about the priorities for rebuilding, including on who should co-ordinate it and who should pay for it.

So what sort of Haiti could we see in ten years time – and how does Haiti get there? Is it up to the rest of the world to fund it? And who should take the lead?

20 Responses to “Haiti: 2020”

  1. 1 Idris Dangalan
    January 26, 2010 at 13:44

    It is terrafic mission to rebuild Haiti in 2020, in my opion UN should takes the lead by forming a committee of trustees which may consist of world’s famous leaders, like Bliar, Mendela, Putin,Carter and named it, to sit and design a road-map of rebuilding Haiti. This committee may organize a fund-rising diner where they invite G8,business-men,OPEC,EU and many more. To build websites to educate people the importance of rebuilding Haiti. In my dream Mission 2020 is the best answer for the Haiti and Haitians.

  2. 2 scmehta
    January 26, 2010 at 13:54

    Ten years on, I can visualize a new and better world emerging ‘through’ Haiti; THE NEW FACE OF THE GLOBAL WORLD.

  3. January 26, 2010 at 14:21

    I think it wil be a great changelle to rebuild Haiti. Maybe the developed nations such as USA and China will see a great opportunity there and will not lose time. The Venezuelan president Manuel Zelaya if I’m not wrong said that the USA goverment sent to Haiti about 100 thousand army troops. In his view, Obama is gonna take control of the country in the future, or at least have the intention to take some advantage over there.
    I think that the process to Haiti recovery will last many years. More than we can predict.

    • 4 Kim
      January 26, 2010 at 20:38

      Espellcaste, first, China is a developing country, not a developed one.
      Second, the Venezuelan president is Hugo Chavez. Zelaya was his buddy kicked out of Honduras.
      Three, the US sent about 10-15,000 troops.
      Four, there’s nothing to ‘take advantage of’ in Haiti. It is a country with a destroyed infrastructure and hundreds of thousands dead. No one relishes ‘taking over’ Haiti, trust me.

  4. 5 T
    January 26, 2010 at 14:43

    There’s a difference between rebuilding and developing. Who’s going to oversee this? The IMF, the G-20? And how much of a say will Haitians have in this?

  5. January 26, 2010 at 14:50

    It will take hell of a time to rebuild such a natural disasterous. In this difficult time eveyone one should help them.

  6. 7 Jagjit Singh Mukandpuri
    January 26, 2010 at 15:27

    First thing to make arraingments for Hatie 2020. UN should moneater all works with the help of European Union,IMF, World Bank and all nations of the Globe.

  7. 8 Gary Paudler
    January 26, 2010 at 16:35

    Development worldwide has not deviated from the model of foreign investment building to attract industry or tourism with minimal “trickle-down” to the local people. The earthquake can be seen as having cleaned Haiti’s canvas and inviting a new, thoughtful painting in which the people can escape an intractable legacy of misery, but it must be designed with the well-being of the people as the number one priority not with the expectation that the people will do okay as a proximate result of wealthy individuals, corporations and nations mining Haiti’s meager resources – land, labor, weather, geography – for exported wealth. Turning Haiti into a Cancun or a free-for-all industrial zone like Southern Louisiana will not be sustainable, healthy or just for the people.

  8. 9 TomK in Mpls
    January 26, 2010 at 17:06

    It needs to up to Haiti. Nobody else matters unless Haiti wants them. I think Haiti should work with companies, not governments, to build industries with the infrastructure to support it. A balanced, long-term, *sustainable* plan. All can and need to gain.

  9. 10 JanB
    January 26, 2010 at 19:11

    How can Haiti be helped?

    The introduction of actual building codes would help, if Haitian lawmakers do not do this they are directly responsible for the victims of the next disaster, because a 7.0 earthquake would never kill as many people in Japan or California where building codes take in account the possibilities of earthquakes. Also corruption should be tackled. Switzerland should return all the secret funds of Haitian (ex)politicians to Haiti to fund the reconstruction. Haiti’s birthrate should be reduced as the island is already overpopulated. It is important not to make Haiti dependent on foreign aid because then they will never take on their responsibilities.

    Though, sadly, I must conclude that corruption will remain epidemic so that Haiti in 2020 will still be the mess it is now, unprepared for the next disaster.

  10. 11 Roberto
    January 26, 2010 at 19:45

    RE “” renewing the country “”

    ————— The people doing the planning are playing a shell game as they talk up pie in a cotton candy sky dreams..

    Many had a role in the deregulation leading to sacking of the world’s treasury by the financial derivatives fraud. Given the pitiable reputation of Haiti’s self rule, the potential for fraud is immense given what we know about Iraq and Afghanistan.

    I’d like to see how much the Haitians can do for themselves with a modest financial stake to start the building process. If all the foreign big shots come in directing everything without input of the Haitians, the rebuilding is guaranteed to be a disaster.

  11. 12 T(not to be confused w/Tom in N.Z. or the other Tom in the States)
    January 26, 2010 at 22:46

    Re: “development.” Did you know that an American is leading a consortium to build a chain of ski resorts in Afghanistan? I wonder how the Afghans feel about that?

    Now to Haiti. Does anyone still not know that the States, France and Canada combined to overthrow Artistede and exile him to South Africa? This means that the current President will essentially do whatever Obama tells him to do. If they were smart, they would bring Aristede back and allow him some participation in the future of the country. Then again, that could mean yet another CIA coup. How many coups can one person take?

  12. 13 Bert
    January 27, 2010 at 01:40

    Think about it. A country that takes it upon itself to spend billions of dollars to rebuild Haiti, over the course of more than a decade, will it throw that money at an existing Haitian regime? No? Well then, what are we talking about?

    Ideally, rebuilding would be something the Haitians would manage and fund on their own, using the earnings from new business ventures that other countries would help promote. This is not what people seem to be considering, though. So, will we be creating another case of simmering, long term resentment?

    Had Haiti just lost a war against, say, the US, then I’d understand our position a little better. It seems surreal that we are embarking on a course of action that SEEMS, to be the same as a conquering nation, albeit perhaps with the best intentions. Amazing how the laws of unintended consequences are so often overlooked.

  13. 14 tanboontee
    January 27, 2010 at 03:21

    One can take advantage of a crisis, one too can see an opportunity in an awful situation.

    The question is when can one start making the very first step to seize and materialise it?

  14. 15 Leslie Jarrett
    January 27, 2010 at 10:12

    What also needs to be done globally is for all ‘state’ debt to be revoked. This will clear the ground for governements around the world to make better use of their countries funds rather than just trying to keep up the repayments. The result being in a hopeful sense a better infrastructure in that country where poverty and poor housing etc are gradually eradicated. This would then assist the UN so much in all of their efforts worldwide as quite often they have to pick up the pieces where debt ridden governments have not looked after their own people properly thus leattiing them live in sub-standard conditions which result in the devastation when natural disasters occur.

  15. 16 Ronald Almeida
    January 27, 2010 at 14:39


    There are always opportunities in disaster and destruction. There are opportunities for looters and corrupt officials that pretend to help. Besides there are opportunities for those that rebuild, either to improve the situation for the surviving inhabitants or once again to take advantage of it all at the cost of those that suffered or died. There are also opportunities to avoid to whatever extent the recurrence of such disasters.

    Since the Haitians are incapable to pay for all this, who but their richest neighbour should do it? After all it is such an opportunity to profit from, not only materially but also from the goodwill of the thankful Haitians. Far better than the show of power and superiority exhibited with weapons and military force.

    • 17 Bert
      January 27, 2010 at 21:38

      “After all it is such an opportunity to profit from, not only materially but also from the goodwill of the thankful Haitians.”

      Excuse me, is that a little like the cheering mobs that would be welcoming our troops in Iraq?

      I don’t know how many times this scenario needs to be repeated before we understand that countries want to run themselves. Even when they are incompetent to do so, by any measure we may apply to them.

  16. 18 Agomo atambire
    January 27, 2010 at 19:10

    with a genuine global commitment as we do in afghanistan and the overall war on terror. Haiti will be at least twice as big as it was b4 the quake in 2020.if we did it for the banks we can do better for our brothers.yes we can!

  17. 19 Jaime Saldarriaga
    January 27, 2010 at 20:48

    Leadership has already started from the initiative of different countries by sending resources to Haiti. Now, first step to the future should be to cancel out the debt of Haiti. Other additional steps must be agreed with Haiti from proposals made by a panel of experts designated by United Nations.

  18. 20 Jt
    February 12, 2010 at 15:32

    Check out patricklouch.wordpress.com
    he has some great Haiti ideas

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