Despite the various challenges confronting Barbados, Minister of
Finance, Christopher Sinckler, is reminding citizens that "we
still have a fundamentally good economy".
Mr. Sinckler made the comments yesterday at the Lloyd Erskine
Sandiford Centre during the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and
Industry's luncheon, themed: Sit Down with the Business
The Minister told his audience: "Our tourism sector has
shown and is showing amazing resilience, and is once again growing
at healthy and even record levels. It is still one of the most
attractive and indeed competitive products in world tourism. Our
international business and financial services sector, though faced
with immense and ongoing challenges from very powerful interests
across the world, is still rated as one of the best regulated and
most attractive domiciles in this or any other hemisphere in the
"Our dollar remains stable even in a world of currency
volatility and it shall remain so for several generations to come.
Our foreign reserve levels are adequate to defend our currency and
will continue to improve going forward. We are confident about
that," he remarked.
He disclosed that the Central Bank would issue its third quarter
report in less than two weeks, which would discuss those matters
fully, including the continuation of positive economic growth in
the economy. Mr. Sinckler pointed out that Barbados was quickly
becoming a leader in transforming into a green economy, and in
promoting renewable and alternative energy systems.
He added that the country had a vibrant, willing and capable, if
yet constrained, Small and Medium-sized (SME)/Entrepreneurial
Sector, which "is anxiously waiting to be unleashed on a
deserving society, hungry for innovative ideas and thirsty for new
sustainable job creation".
He proffered the view that Barbados was at a crossroads in its
development thrust. "Many of the things on which we relied and
on which this country was built have either been removed or
significantly reduced. We no longer enjoy preferential access to
large, inviting markets in Europe, the UK, Canada and the USA, just
as we can no longer expect to be paid above market prices for our
inefficiencies in production of our exports. Those days are
over...," he contended.
The Minister stressed that the country must finance its own
development from its own earnings and savings or from expensive
borrowings in the open capital market.
However, Mr. Sinckler said he was "resolutely
confident" in the capacity and will of the Government and
people of Barbados to overcome challenges and seize those
opportunities that present themselves.
Source: Barbados Government Information Service
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