William Henry Bramble - Chief Minister - National Development

National Development

William Bramble was invested as the first Chief Minister of Montserrat in 1960; by then the cotton production was in a decline, as the workers were rather emigrating to United Kingdom. Coping with this situation, he formulated an economic project, with three objectives: the diversification of the exploitation of the rich soil of the country for exporting regionally, the development of the industry of tourism, and the development of a strong offshore banking through taxation exemption.

For the development of the tourism, in 1961 William Bramble founded the Montserrat Real State Company, which built about 100 buildings for the foreign tourism. This effectively boosted the national income, forging a new, positive character of the nation which lasted until the eruption of the Soufriere Hills, in the 1990s with the massive destruction of the country. Indeed, until such nefarious event Bramble was regarded as the father of the modern Montserrat.

William Bramble also supported the establishment of the powerful Radio Antilles; Bramble had to insist for convincing the British authorities for it, and the powerful station finally started operating in 1963, successfully broadcasting news for the whole Caribbean region. Also for 1963, William Bramble managed negotiating with the British government, so the 12,000 inhabitants of Montserrat got electric supply with affordable fees for the first time; Bramble had pledged the regular acquisition in advance of a determined quote of energy, and so the local plant was granted.

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