Oualie, which means “land of beautiful waters” is the aboriginal name for
the small enchanting island of Nevis, which is located in the North Eastern
Caribbean. Oualie has a population of 10,016 people, and you can drive
around it in less than an hour or walk around it in less than 6 hours. But
take your time, there is much to see: sandy white beaches, museums and
historic sites, marshlands teeming with wildlife, rain forest, semi-arid wild
lands and offshore coral reefs and oceans abounding with aquatic life.
In spite of its small size, Oualie has made significant contributions to the
world. For example, Alexander Hamilton, the first Treasurer of the United
States of America – featured on the US$10 note was born on Oualie. Today,
the site of the national legislature on Oualie is located on the property
where the Hamilton family lived for many years. Other famous people from
or linked to Oualie include Constance Baker Motley, who as a young lawyer
represented Martin Luther King and later became the first African-American
female Federal and Chief judge and Melanie Brown of the Spice Girls.
The first settlers of Oualie were the Carib, Taino and Siboney people who
originated in the lower Amazon and Orinoco rivers. They were masterful
sailors and stewards of the environment but were later displaced by
Europeans following the arrival of Columbus to the Caribbean.
During the days when pirates roamed the Caribbean, a time when sugar
cane, gold and tobacco were commodities as important as oil, gold,
platinum and information are today, Oualie was the Queen of the
Caribbean. Oualie was far too small to produce sugar cane and tobacco on
the scale of countries like Cuba and the Dominican Republic but Oualie
could still produce sugar profitably and so they did. But by focusing on
Oualie’s unique endowments they were able to do far better than their
i. The island’s political stability – while other islands were changing
hands from one European power to another, Oualie remained firmly British
throughout its post-Aboriginal history making it a safe place to invest;
ii. Absence of slave rebellions – Oualie was unique in that slaves and
masters worshipped together at their churches, a very progressive move in
those repressive times;
iii. Oualie’s geothermal springs were renown throughout Europe for
their curative properties, they became the destination for the well-wheeled.
iv. Oualie has and continues to be a crossroad of cultures from Europe,
Africa, Asia and the Middle East. At one time, Nevis had the largest Jewish
population and is the site of the oldest synagogue in the Caribbean. This
openness and respect for differences, new ideas, was a powerful
wellspring for stability, innovation and adaptability.
Today, Oualie continues to prosper by looking to its comparative
advantages and continuing to reinvent itself. Many of the old sugar mills
and plantations on Oualie have now been converted into honeymoon suites
and tourist destinations and continue to generate revenue and create jobs.
Literacy is almost 100%, an essential factor in today’s competitive,
knowledge driven economy. With access to excellent telecommunications,
political stability and a skilled workforce, Oualie competes in the offshore
financial services sector. Tourism is another key sector, but being
environmentally aware, the island has decided to focus on up-market
tourism allowing it to raise far greater revenues; while reducing its
environmental footprint; than other destinations that look to mass tourism.
Oualie is exploring and exploiting its extensive geothermal resources and
developing initiatives to ship electrical power via underwater power cables
to neighbouring islands. The focus on green energy and high oil prices will
surely make this project a green cash cow for many years to come.
On Oualie, relationships are very important, the decisions - I make affect
others who will at some point be making decisions that affect me. In
making decisions about myself I need to think about others and tomorrow.
Being small helps us to see the big picture. By taking care of the big
picture, we also take care of the individual concerns. Sustainable success
means creating a virtuous circle that spreads benefits.
Hopefully, these snapshots have explained the seemingly baffling success
of this small, obscure island. It’s what we call doing it the Oualie Way. The
founders and members of the Oualie Consulting Grouping Ltd,.All share,
understand and live the Oualie vision. We are all skilled professionals who
understand the need to not only excel at what we do, but to also constantly
reinvent ourselves and seek out unique niches and opportunities.
Origin and Inspiration for the Company’s Name
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©2009 The Oualie Consulting Group Ltd. All rights reserved.