National Security has received a slightly bigger piece of the national Budget than it did last fiscal year with $5.798 billion, a figure that’s just over last year’s budget allocation.
In his fiscal presentation yesterday, Minister of Finance Colm Imbert promised an information technology upgrade and advancement for national security.
“We will be improving decision making and productivity by computerising the National Security Head Office, thereby increasing information collaboration, data availability and data analysis,” Imbert said.
The T&T Forensic Science Centre will also be technologically improved and advanced with respect to ballistics.
“We are computerising and improving governance in the T&T Forensic Sciences Centre and upgrading the integrated ballistics identification system with a view towards improving examination of all firearms-related evidence linked to firearm-related crimes.”
He added that there will be full digitisation of service across divisions, which will improve the efficiency of operations and even track the movement of evidence.
Imbert also spoke of improved offshore capabilities with the procurement of two Cape Class patrol vessels. He added that these vessels will be concentrating on building onshore capabilities, with an electrical upgrade for a continuous power supply to its Coast Guard facilities to provide a more efficient and safe working environment for personnel, especially in event of national disasters.
“We will also be upgrading the shore power supply system of the Coast Guard base in Tobago, which, on completion, will facilitate the berthing of the Cape Class vessels, which will now utilise the onshore power supply instead of the vessels’ generators, which will allow for less downtime and a greater Coast Guard presence in the maritime domain,” Imbert said.
In the Last Budget (2021-2022), National Security was allocated $5.664 billion.
According to Imbert, the two Cape Class patrol vessels to be added to the fleet of T&T Coast Guard vessels will be able to travel longer distances and remain offshore for longer periods conducting a wide range of operational activities, including border security, search and rescue, protection of critical energy infrastructure as well as countering all forms of illegal trafficking.
National security allocations
2022-2023 $5.798 billion
2021-2022 $5.664 billion
2020-2021 $5.227 billion
2019-2020 $6.44 billion.
2018-2019 $6.120 billion
2017-2018 $6.4 billion