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Montserrat’s ICT Laws to be Updated

The Ministry of Communication, Works, Energy & Labour (MCWEL) announced Thursday that a legal consultant from the company Lex Romulus based in Barbados, is to assist Montserrat with its Information and Communication Technology (ICT) legislative framework.

According to a release from the Government Information Unit, the consultant is expected to review current legislation and develop a robust legal and regulatory framework that builds public trust and confidence in ICT, and encourages enterprise and business development.  The consultant signed the contract with the Government of Montserrat on Thursday, August 23 and will provide his services for a 6-month period.

The Ministry’s ICT Coordinator, Loni Howe noted that the development of these regulations will build the trust of potential investors and ensure that Montserrat stays abreast of the ever changing technological advancements and processes happening around the world.  She further explained that the legal consultant is expected to produce legislation that covers ‘data protection and privacy’; ‘information security’; ‘electronic signatures’; ‘e-commerce’; ‘dispute resolution and management’ and ‘cybercrime’ among others.

The consultant will work with the Ministry of Communications, Works and Labour to complete the review and legislative development process. The MCWEL noted that although the Attorney General Chambers is responsible for the preparation of legislation, due to resource constraints, external expertise is required.  In addition, the Ministry said the nature of ICT legislation requires a certain degree of expertise which is not readily available on the island.

As part of the scope of work, the consultant will engage in consultations with a number of stakeholders on the island through face to face meetings and meetings conducted through the internet.  He is therefore scheduled to be on island on the 24th and 25th of September to engage with all relevant stakeholders on the areas that would affect their related areas.

The Lex Romulus legal consultant is one of three companies that responded to the tender notice by the MCWEL.  The tender notice for the ‘LEGAL ASSISTANCE TO UPDATE MONTSERRAT’S ICT LEGISLATION’ was advertised from 24th May 2018 to 6th June 2018.