IMF Executive Board Article IV Consultation with Barbados 2013: Government Urged to Continue Close Supervision of Banks and non-Bank Financial Institutions

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Directors commended the strides made by the authorities in improving financial sector regulatory and supervisory frameworks. While domestic banks appear resilient to shocks, Directors noted the risks posed by a negative sovereign-financial feedback loop as well as weakening asset quality. They stressed the importance of continued close supervision of both banks and non-bank financial institutions, and looked forward to implementation of the recommendations of the Financial Sector Assessment Program (FSAP) update.

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67 thoughts on “IMF Executive Board Article IV Consultation with Barbados 2013: Government Urged to Continue Close Supervision of Banks and non-Bank Financial Institutions

    • For the coming years, Directors encouraged the authorities to consider additional tightening, focusing on growth-friendly measures, to put debt on a steeper downward trajectory. They noted that a debt-to-GDP target could serve as a useful medium-term anchor. Directors saw scope for raising revenues by broadening the base, reducing tax exemptions, and improving tax and customs administration. They also stressed the need for public enterprise reforms, particularly to improve oversight and accountability. In light of ongoing efforts to rein in the wage bill, Directors stressed the importance of preserving an adequate and well-targeted social safety net.

    • Caswell please comment on the following. Implication for numbers going home etc:

      Recognizing the need for urgent action, the authorities announced ambitious fiscal consolidation measures during the second half of 2013 aimed at strengthening the fiscal position and arresting the slide in reserves. These measures included a reduction in the size of the civil service by about 13 percent, further downsizing by attrition, wage cuts for elected and appointed officials, and a two year nominal wage freeze. If fully implemented, and assuming slippages are corrected with offsetting measures, these actions could lower the fiscal deficit to 4.9 percent of GDP, and would help to restore stability to external flows. Output is projected to fall by 1.2 percent in 2014 before recovering modestly in 2015, supported by capital inflows to finance tourism and energy related projects. The debt-to-GDP ratio could level off by 2015/16 and decline slowly thereafter, though foreign reserves would remain below desirable levels.

      However, the near term outlook will depend on vigorous and timely implementation of the proposed adjustment measures, and the consequences of policy slippage would likely be significant.

    • A couple points which stand out so far in the IMF Cautionary Tale

      1. The IMF points to the fact the “fiscal balance has been in deficit since the early 2000s, the structural budget balance started to deteriorate in the mid-2000s as spending and investment was ramped up for various capital projects, including preparations for the Cricket World Cup in 2007, just prior to the onset of the global financial crisis.”
      2. And … “In the first six months of 2013/14, domestic financial institutions and the central bank provided the bulk of the financing in the form of T-bills, while the NIS provided about 11 percent in the form longer term debentures. NIS holdings of government paper are estimated at about 67 percent of its portfolio, above the guideline recommended in the 13thactuarial review to limit holdings in government securities to no more than 57 percent. Going forward, the capacity of the NIS to absorb new government debt will be limited by balance sheet constraints as the operating surplus has declined to near balance.”

    • p>This comment makes one wonder why we should be muzzling the Public Accounts Committee at this time. Them this maybe a silly comment.

      Authorities’ views

      31. The authorities welcomed staff recommendations regarding the management and accountability of PEs. They noted the lack of compliance with existing rules mandating submission of audited financial statements by PEs to their oversight boards in a timely fashion. There is some concern that the governing Boards of PEs are not well informed of their oversight duties (and staff questioned whether they were sufficiently removed from political interference). The authorities were interested in the suggestions by staff noted above. They requested technical assistance, which CARTAC will begin in early 2014, and have begun initiatives to address corporate governance of PEs.

  1. For many of us all the IMF is warning is what we were seeing all along.It will not get any better.It will get worse simply because its too late to implement the simple corrective measures which were required,Left to this bunch of incompetents,stumbling from one crisis to another,bluffing and lying with impuniity,speaking rotten English,what can we expect but disaster.If only Estwick was a man of principle and not principal,we might have been saved by the Belle.

  2. Who has intelligence knew that this mess started in the early to mid-2000’s, of course neither DLP or BLP still believes that, so too bad, big head asses.

  3. I wonder what prompted these recommendations from the IMF?

    Include in the CBB Act a provision stipulating conditions under which the Governor can be removed. Revise provisions that allow Ministry of Finance (MoF) to overrule CBB’s corrective measures

    • @Are-we-there-yet

      The report puts the Central Bank in a bad light. The IMF has clearly stated that monetary policy practiced by the Central Bank has run counter to what was required to protect the peg etc…

  4. David

    The problems in the economy that led to the lay-offs did not just happen. They were there for all to see, only that it was not convenient for the administration to acknowledge and deal with because they were more interested in securing a second term to qualify for parliamentary pensions. The Government knew better and lied and continues to lie to cover their mismanagement of the economy.

    In order to correct the problems that were essentially incurred for political expediency, Government has chosen to sacrifice the most vulnerable in society by implementing measures that have potential to create havoc in the country. Already crime has increased, and I am not referring to the spate of robberies made possible by the low fares on Gol Airline.

    The IMF and Government have not appreciated the fact that since independence the avenue where unskilled people could go to England and find work is not available. There are no jobs to absorb those that have been retrenched from the public service. Government had been asking the private sector to maintain jobs and to some extent they were maintaining job levels. With Government retrenching, the private sector that was losing money to be patriotic would no longer have any motivation to assist Government.

    Having sent home these numbers, and with no alternate employment, this silly government would now face large numbers applying for welfare assistance or they would have to sit by and allow the vulnerable to suffer.

    The solution to solving the country’s economic must not involve massive lay-offs. That is a recipe for social upheaval which would scare off investors and tourist that are needed to grow the economy. Sending home people is easy: it does not take much imagination or skill, but what do you expect from this low-skilled administration.

    • Here is what the IMF says about the tourism industry and recent tax concessions:

      The key tourism sector could benefit from
      a more cohesive strategy, covering both
      supply and demand considerations
      . Staff views the objective of revitalizing the tourism sector
      as appropriate given the country’s geographical en
      dowment, its role as a foreign exchange earner
      and its importance for the Barbados “brand”. Recent measures to expand supply include an
      expansion in cruise passenger arrival capacity, gene
      rous tax incentives for an all-inclusive resort,
      and airline promotions, including for low-cost airl
      ines. As these initiatives appear to move away
      from attracting the high-end tourist, further
      market research may be warranted on Barbados’
      niche market and identifying new sources of dema
      nd, particularly in light of supply expansion
      elsewhere in the Caribbean. This would have import
      ant implications for key investment, taxation
      and marketing decisions.

  5. @ David | February 12, 2014 at 7:28 PM |
    “The report puts the Central Bank in a bad light.”

    And deservedly so!
    The Guv has prostituted himself professionally just to sycophantically appease his political masters.

    We can expect pressures to bear for his removal before the next scheduled IMF consultation.
    The IMF officials do not expect future interaction with that joker. His retention as the Guv going into any future discussions under Article 1V purely on grounds of political expediency would certainly be frowned upon by the IMF Executive Board.

    Should Estwick become the MoF- as a political compromise by Stuart to save his government from collapse- he, D E, should take the first opportunity to ditch the jerk and remove a real quack of a governor from the financial landscape of the country which has been saddled for the last 5 years or so with a lying jackass of astronomical proportions.
    We can expect him to be thrown, like disposable meat, to the wolves as a sacrifice to appease the IMF god.


    IMF Executive Board Article IV Consultation with Barbados 2013: Government Urged to Continue Close Supervision of Banks and non-Bank Financial Institutions

    lllloololol eheheh shshsh ,
    They want crooks to look out for crooks lolololl

  7. Recall the braying jackass of a Governor of the CB told Christine Lagarde that the IMF should revise its methods of handling small economies and that one policy did not fit all and that Barbados was to be treated differently.Christine said she was only a lawyer.The braying JA dug his own grave,so if he’s now in the crosshairs of the IMF,it is a situation he deserves,decidedly so. A jackass is no match for a lioness. En garde!!
    Btw,the reference to better oversight of Banks and Financial Institutions is
    a reference to the Greenverbs and his filthy lucre?Was it not moved to a credit union from the bank?And is not the Governor,the PM and the MoF all involved in all this crap with Greenverbs that has bajan Clico policy holders and the traditional clean bankers hopping mad?
    In the movie ‘Birdman of Alcatraz’, Burt Lancaster delivered the ultimate insult to the Warden.He said”You are nothing but dog puke” The same can be said of this DLP administration and its advisers.

    • It will be interesting to see how our political and economic leaders galvanize the effort to breath confidence into the Barbados economy in the coming days. It is bad enough a senior cabinet member expressing disagreement with the approach of government now we have the IMF Report.

    • The language by the fund appear to lack confidence in what they were told by local authorities.

      The authorities are aware of potential competitiveness challenges.
      While they did not disagree with the possible benefits of lowering domestic prices, they are confident in the quality
      of the Barbados brand and the desirability of Barbados as a tourist destination stemming from itshigh levels of human capital, good infrastructure, and a safe, business-friendly environment. Theyreferred to a paper by the CBB (Worrell et al) showing that competitiveness in the tradable
      sectors, including tourism, has improved. The study attempted to establish a broader measure ofcompetitiveness in the Caribbean and Central America by constructing an index of price and non-price indicators, including using domestic sectoralprice indices relative to regional competitors.

      The authorities believe that growth will be higher than predicted by staff, based on their robust growth strategy.

    • <

      p>Here is a whopper!

      A number of data shortcomings have emerged in recent years.The Barbados Statistics Service (BSS) compiles the nominal GDP series and the CBB the real series, and these are not compatible. Staff noted the major differences in the direction of the GDP deflator and CPI index since 2009 and, in the projections, have derived the real GDP series based on the consumer price index. Thus there is not a reliable deflator, nor are there deflators by sector (Barbados does not prepare a full expenditure-based GDP series). With the assistance of CARTAC, the BSS has begun to prepare a constant price GDP series by industry, using 2006 as a base year, which is expected to be available in 2014. With respect to the fiscal sector, recent data on the financial performance of public enterprises is not available, and there are no official estimates of arrears accumulation. There are a few unexplained discrepancies in the monetary statistics, including a large “Other Items Net” entry. Some of these data are macro-critical and, if they persist, could impede the staff’s ability to conduct effective surveillance.

    • David

      Your whopper is the IMF’s way of saying that the Government is lying to them and they (IMF) can’t rely on Government’s statistics. Put simply, the IMF is calling Government liars. They have waited really late to come to that conclusion.


    • We see the FSC has come out to say that the non bank financial industry can withstand stress but the IMF Report cautions that the sector needs better oversight.

      The financial sector in Barbados has always been complimented for its management. Let us hope we have nothing to worry about.

      We need to keep an eye on the insurance industry as well.

    • David

      I hope that the non-bank financial institutions can withstand the stress but personally, I won’t take the word of the FSC. From my experience in dealing with them, I find that they are incompetent. They pick on the minutiae and miss the obvious misconduct of those that they regulate. I can speak with certainty of the credit union movement.


  8. The following observations from the IMF’s report as part of their recommendations would be like bitter medicine to make Fumbler puke up the stupid statements he made against any plans of privatization by his administration:

    “Divestment of some state assets could help lower debt and raise private sector investment and growth.”

    “The authorities may wish to consider divestment of non-strategic assets to help reduce the nation’s debt burden while at the same time contributing to productivity.”

    “These could include selling shares in some public enterprises, real estate holdings, and eventually some of the transport activities. Sales which involved FDI would be particularly helpful by removing potential constraints to enterprises financing their investments.”

    We wonder what ac, Bushie et al (the arch anti-privatization hypocrites) would have to say when Fumble is forced to eat humble pie and, for the umpteenth time, renege on all prior commitments to short sighted fools for brass bowls.

    Now who would be in the queue to take the following off the State or waving foreign dollars to buy shares in the air and sea port as promised by the MoF in the June 2012 budget presentation?

    Port Inc.


    Crooks , Liars and Scumbags , DBLP Government ,
    What lies will they come with next , and the key who are the fools that will believe them . People need to ask them , where they get so much land for the UDC and NHC to play with and to put money in their own Pockets ,,
    Next time you see any AG or EX AG as them ,Ask EX AG Sir Henry Ford, Ask EX AG MIA, Ask EX AG Fumble, Ask AG Dumbwait . Now just wait for the lie .As soon as they look at you its a lie , If the Lips move that is a lie, when they turn to some one else you know it a lie, Liars , Crooks , Scumbags, What did the IMF say, The IMF giving you more truth than the DBLP government, If not for the IMF we all be deeper in lies from LIARS?

    Wish the IMF did a study on VOTE buying in the last Election for people to wake up.

  10. @ Caswell Franklyn | February 13, 2014 at 12:12 AM |

    The IMF has been most ‘diplomatic’ with its language.
    However, people with a modicum of perspicacity into the canons and workings of international relations can see right through the IMF’s sophisticated style of telling the government it is not trusted neither does the requisite amount of confidence reside in the damned lying party.
    But the destructive lying aka perfidious (dlp) administration can always tell the IMF it is up to them and investors to restore confidence in the administration and not the other way around à la Freundel reasoning.

    PS: Don’t you find it passing strange the marked absence of contributions to this thread from the likes of ac, Fractured BLP, Waiting &Ruffian and the others who revel in cussing you and yours truly?
    Probably they are experiencing severe difficulties understanding the ramifications of the IMF report. LOL!!!

    • Miller

      The IMF report is a stinging indictment on the performance of the Government. I don’t expect those mindless dolts to have any answers, except to blame the last administration and that is getting more than a bit tiresome.


  11. Is Clyde Mascoll deaf , he cant read or cant see? Why does he keep calling for government to tell the people the whole story? The people already know the whole story, they know the score the IMF disclosed all. Standard and Poor’s have laid bare everything. How much clearer does he want Barbados economic situation to be spelt out. The Article 4 Report is there for the world to read. The IMF holds no brief for government they told it like it is. What Mascoll should do is prod his BLP partners to work more with government to restore stability and engender confidence for investors . Not only that advise them to settle down and offer worthwhile suggestions to help the economy and society. Stirring up passions hoping people would march and riot is not needed at this time, thank you. Then again Mascoll has zero credibility he appears oblivious to the fact that no one pays him much attention.

  12. @Caswell Franklyn

    “The IMF report is a stinging indictment on the performance of the Government.”

    my question is, is the IMF telling us what we don’t already know?

    • What credibility should one give to the Article IV? If we give it credibility then there is a case for the government to answer and one for the people as well.

  13. David (not BU) @ 9.22 am

    You said my question is, is the IMF telling us what we don’t already know?

    Yes, they are telling us a bit more than we knew. But, more importantly, they are also telling us and the world, very authoritatively, what we already knew about our parlous state but which was either denied or obfuscated by the authorities. In this regard they have hinted broadly at the non-believability of some of the Government’s statistics.

    This, along with previous reports, and the “between the lines” hints of the current government’s ineptness, actually reduces the credibility of the Hants of this world re. their oft-stated views of a nonexistent parity between the economic management of the two parties.

    De Cabinet in session yet for today? Is Estwick giving his presentation? Wonder how this will factor into the happenings re. the economy in the next few days and weeks?

  14. @ The Fan | February 13, 2014 at 9:22 AM |
    “What Mascoll should do is prod his BLP partners to work more with government to restore stability and engender confidence for investors Not only that advise them to settle down and offer worthwhile suggestions to help the economy and society.”

    Even though you have been given a ‘dressing down’ in the diplomatic best of IMF finery, your arrogance and stupidity still boggle the mind.

    What has become of the mantra Barbados is a society and not an economy? Do you now appreciate the stupidity of trying to separate the society from a viable economy?

    Even if Mascoll were to take on your suggestions the question still remains who will listen. Certainly not the Fumbler who made convincingly pellucid he has no plans of entertaining advice or suggestions unless they are coming from the select eminent group within his dark cabinet of blindly foolish men and women chasing behind a black bald pooch cat playing a cartoon game of Tom cat and Jerry mouse.

    We know though there is one voice you must certainly listen to, if you don’t want your currency to worth sea crab shite in a few months.

    What we want to hear from the government are the plans in the pipeline to satisfy the IMF’s “call” for a programme of privatization and the need to introduce a welfare programme targeted at those only in need aka the introduction of means testing.

    This targeted safety net policy directive will certainly see the end of free bus rides, free school meals, school books and certainly summer camps for all and sundry.
    You should also expect students at the UWI to be called on to make an additional contribution towards the economic cost of their tertiary education including the abolition of the funding of overseas education for scholarship and exhibitions winners.

  15. ‘concessions to specific tourism projects in late 2013 further erode the tax base and create a non-level playing field – says the IMF.

  16. I knew things were bad but I was hoping for better, truth be told, my worst fears have been realised. It is the nasty lies that these damned idiots told Barbadians that have us mad.

    Even the IMF officials who do not live here know these damned idiots are nasty liars. That is so clear as one reads the report.

    The Governor of the Central Bank, if he has one iota of shame, should resign forthwith. AWTY pointed out where the IMF has recommended that a provision be made in the CBB Act, a provision stipulating conditions under which the Governor can be removed and to revise provisions that allow Ministry of Finance to overrule CBB’s corrective measures. This alone tells you that the officials did not believe a word he told them or that he has the integrity to manage this country’s finances.

    It was also noted that the IMF officials have problems with the statistical data. We on BU have been saying the same thing for a long time. Remember at one point the Governor made the Statistical Department adjust their figures to suit the hastily put together ones of the CBB. We all know that there is no way in God’s good name that with the situation worse than in 1991 when the unemployment rate rose to 24% that it could be still 11% today. The private sector has been sending off people since 2009.

    When the governor gives his next report, with all the current job cuts, I fully expect him to either use last quarter’s figures or to say amazingly that the rate is still 11% or that it dropped to 10%.

    That is how much confidence we have in him and this destructive lying party!

  17. @ Prodigal Son | February 13, 2014 at 10:49 AM |

    But Prodigal this is exactly we have been saying here on BU for the past two years.
    Now that the IMF has confirmed what we “nuisances” (to quote the chief of the eminent group of liars and incompetents) have been saying all along by speaking the truth would we get a break from the vicious and vile attacks from the likes of ac and Fractured?

    Or can we expect more of the same from the Fan, Waiting & Ruffian; and even “BLP-Nation-newspaper.”
    Should the Nation newspaper publish verbatim the IMF report that dangerous lying pimp from the George Street cesspool of intellectual filth who would still accuse the paper of just repeating BLP propaganda.

  18. The fact remains that business people have tried to do business with Fumble’s Fools and failed.

    We have brought no end of initiatives, spent no end of money based on promises of facilitation and we have failed.

    When it became obvious in 2011 that this was not a business-oriented administration we spent our resources keeping our businesses afloat and we have nothing left to gamble on more commercial failures.

    There will be no more ‘ideas or initiatives’ proposed to this gov’t; it has all been tried before.

    IT MATTERS NOT WHETHER THEY CUT SPENDING OR NOT, OR MEET IMF REQUIREMENTS OR NOT; there will be no economic growth without ‘gambler’ entrepreneurs investing in themselves and BIM to bring new commerce to this land and it will not happen under Fumble.

    Even if we were paid the millions of dollars that gov’t owes us for products and services rendered, the money will not be re-invested in this flock of fools.

    • Has the Prime Minister been meeting with the BHTA as promised? Bear in mind this is the sector which pays the bills.

  19. What I read from this report are 2 main things and they are the crux of the matter. Fist the CBB have to stop printing money and passing it to the Government to pay bills. Second, a continuation of existing policy is going to most likely cause a devaluation.

    From the report….

    “Continuation of policy trends or delays/failure to implement fiscal consolidation could lead to a bigger drop in confidence, forex shortages, capital flight and reserves losses and pressure on the exchange peg; a forced devaluation or disorderly adjustment process would be likely.”

    Now put this IMF statement against the backdrop that our FX reserves were reported to drop $100million in January at a time when some Ministers were saying we were having a bumper tourist season and you will get a sense of whether the Government even understands any financial matrix at all. Belt tightening is coming.

    • Are we hearing the Prime Minister correctly attcking the private sector this weekend? Is his the correct approach in the prevailing environment?

  20. One would think it is the right time to engage the private sector in meaningful dialog and not with a scolding attitude, in saying that, they also have to watch out for the schemers and scammers that now lead the private sector.

  21. @ Frustrated Businessman | February 13, 2014 at 11:49 AM |
    “..there will be no economic growth without ‘gambler’ entrepreneurs investing in themselves and BIM to bring new commerce to this land and it will not happen under Fumble.”

    The man seems to be overly keen in making a political death wish for his beleaguered administration. He keeps rubbing people the wrong way and alienating those who could help pull the country out of the current dark hole.
    How can he accuse the business people of suffering from “analysis paralysis “unless Mr. Stasis is looking in a mirror asking himself am I, the pot suffering from ‘implementation paralysis’, calling the kettle black?

  22. In 2008, the IMF recommended to the David Thompson administration:

    • Continue to moderate wages to bring down the Central Government wages bill to about 10% of GDP over a five year period (1% of GDP). Instead, thousands of persons were hired at the Transport Board, NCC, NHC, Drainage Unit, UDC, RDC, National Assistance Board (could you imagine that despite reduced operations, there is an accountant, a senior clerk and 4 clerical officers [6] in the accounts section of NAB).

    • Reverse the large expansion of expenditure in goods and services; we get a football tournament; over $250,000 to host Britain’s royalty [no fx resulting]; $10M to CLICO; $30M tax forgiveness to the Turf Club; Constituency Councils – thereby increasing services expenditure; BAMC, BWA.

    • Sell government assets.

    The IMF also stated that there were important financial risks facing the country; in the context of lower capital inflow, the borrowing requirements of the public sector could crowd out credit to the private or lead to a reliance on Central Bank financing.

  23. A few comments.
    Firstly, I am not sure we can rely on the IMF’s figures about 1800 people having been sent home. The statement might come from the IMF but according to the Nation’s article the IMF actually said “We’ve been informed by the authorities that approximately 1 800 people were let go…” so its the Government telling them the numbers. On the basis that no-one believes the statistical data coming for the Government or the CBB, why should we believe this number?
    Secondly, and I know it was a slip of the keyboard but I love Sith’s comment at 12.22 – “Fist the CBB…”. Yes we should and hard.
    Lastly, I hope Mr Estwick does not get his way with the cheap Middle-Eastern loan. If he does it will take the pressure off the Government to make any changes to the structure of the Public Service, leave us with the current too large and expensive army of occupation and allow the Government to continue to stay on the road of taking out more and more loans which we cannot afford. Hard as it is, we need to take the pain now to have any chance of getting back on a stable footing any time soon.

  24. DD’s understanding is that Article IV Consultations are normally an annual event

    See the following at Page 5/82 of the 2013 Article IV report @


    THE LAST Article IV consultation with Barbados was concluded in December 2011. At that time, staff stressed that the widening fiscal deficit and debt were were the key policy issues, and encouraged the authorities to implement policies to deliver a credible fiscal consolidation plan. The authorities requested a delay in the subsequent consultation because of general elections, which were held in February 2013. The Democratic Labour Party was re-elected at that time with a one-seat majority in the House of Assembly.

    The main (2011) recommendations included:

    reduce the deficit by lowering the wage bill band cutting transfers to public enterprises;
    pursue a credible monetary policy by avoiding monetization of the deficit:
    reduce reliance on the NIS for financing; and
    maintain a positive interest rate differential vis-a-vis U.S. rates

    Despite some progress, many of the main recommendations were not addressed.”

    Clearly the “authorities” had the annual Article IV consultation in 2012 delayed to 2013 to avoid having the IMF report circulating, and becoming an election issue, during the 2013 election campaign.

    Now in 2014 , after failing to address many of the recommendations in the 2011 Article IV report, the 2013 Article IV report becomes, not a DLP election issue , but a national survival issue.

    Shame on DEM.

  25. Where ever Errol Barrow is he must be fuming like hell to see where the braying jackasses Stuart,Worrell,Sinckler,Quisling Boyce,Ince and now Maxine McClean have brought the Central Bank and the Ministry of Finance into thorough disrepute.(Maxine for defending the actions of the fools in the Senate).
    Now that the Central Bank is disgraced,and further,the threat of devaluation is staring us in the face,and further a crisis is looming in the banking system which refuses to touch government paper and can see no projects in which to invest,there is the possibility that to kill the influence of the Central Bank in monetary and fiscal policy,and spread its decision making policy membership wider that the Barbados dollar might find a more reliable haven within the East Caribbean Central Bank.The least that can be hoped for is to have it headquartered in church village.

  26. Miller, that isn’t even the most ironic part. A few weeks ago when the IMF pressure was hot, Fumble sent his lackies into the business world to ‘help him identify projects that were stuck in the civil service so we could jump-start the economy’. You might have noticed Alex McDonald making a statement in the press on this. Meanwhile, the reason projects are stuck is because the Minister of Planning (Fumble) is the only person who can make planning decisions on coastal land or any property larger than 1 hectare and hasn’t done so for over six years unless CTP Cummings gets his payoffs and ‘rolls the wicket’ with the PM.

    It would be funny if it wasn’t so sad.

    Fumble and his Fools will continue to blame the civil service for them not doing their jobs. When they came to Gov’t House they must honestly have thought that businesses and governments manage themselves.

  27. Enuff

    When government finally accepts that the Pure Beach Resort and Spa at Foul Bay is a fraud and they kick them out, that “expansive, pristine beachfront property just 10 minutes from an international airport” will be left for development.

  28. Enuff, you have no idea the scale of the problem. For any existing hotel to remodel a bar, change a pool, add a veranda or make any alteration to the property footprint it has to go through a 4-year (minimum) system of civil service and gov’t ineptitude. Never mind developments on new land, those are not cost-effective anyway. I’m talking about keeping old properties going. The reason Butch didn’t develop Paradise is due to said BS; the reason he bought an existing hotel is because the BS was less. Work out the interest cost on land left sitting for 4 years waiting on fools to do their job and tell me how it could be recovered with hotel development cost in Bim already 16 times higher than the international average.

    Unless you wrestle with gov’t idiots all day you will never have even a hint of an understanding of what fortitude it takes to get anything done in Barbados.

  29. Why exactly should there be a great rush to facilitate business persons? … when business in Barbados has meant scam after scam, destruction of prime beachfront property, and at best, importation of foreign made bling for mark-up and resale?

    Which businessmekn have come up with a proposal for something innovative and PRODUCTIVE in recent times (outside of Bizzy)?

    The DLP are clueless….but don’t let us fool ourselves that our business people or opposition party is any better.

    What we need is a meritocracy. Where issues are evaluated on MERIT by independent and competent assessors…..Unfortunately, not many persons like that approach because there is nothing in it for YARDFOWLS or “jokers with connections”.
    …we prefer to continue to argue about the total brass bowl system that we have inherited.

    One thing about which MIA is 100% correct…..the new Central Revenue Authority, if it is to be run by a board of persons appointed and dis-appointed by the Minister, is destined to be a complete farce.

    …ask Caswell what will happen when the minister decides that one of his ‘friends’ or ‘benefactors’ is to be exempted from scrutiny….
    Shiite man…..with her phone tapping equipment Mia would have Bushie audited every damn week….

  30. You’re right BT, BDS doesn’t need business people. You better practice sucking rocks for when the few business people left leave you for greener fields. The Trinis are already here to buy our business assets for 50 cents on the dollar, then you’ll see how business is really done.

  31. That is exactly the point frustrated B.
    Barbados DOES need businessmen….not selfish frauds.
    The fact that our assets have been for sale to foreigners now for decades proves Bushie’s point that our businessmen are no better than our politicians….indeed, since they mostly bribe and control the politicians THEY may well be our real problem…

    You may be a special case – and thus your frustration, but generally what damn businessmen what!?!

    • Economist: Time to go to IMF


      p>Added by Marlon Madden on February 13, 2014.
      Saved under Local News


      p>Economist Ryan Straughn


      p>Economist Ryan Straughn


      p>An economist is advising the Barbados Government to negotiate an International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme sooner rather than later because it has no chance of meeting its targets in time.


      p>The Freundel Stuart administration is hoping to slash about $35 million from its budget at the end of this financial year which ends March 31, and to achieve a further $143 million in the next fiscal year.


      p>But immediate past president of the Barbados Economic Society Ryan Straughn told Barbados TODAY the Government had “dilly-dallied” too much with the measures for the past six months or so and it was now too late to rescue the economy through the planned fiscal strategy.


      p>“We still have a current account deficit of nearly $500 million on the fiscal side, at the end of December,” said Straughn.


      p>“The truth is that we might as well just go to the IMF and start the negotiations because the process takes a little time to conclude. So we are better off now . . . Because the one thing we cannot afford to do again is borrow another set of money because the reserves are running out. We need to restore some confidence in the market and the government is, quite frankly, unable to do so. It needs some help.”


      p>Straughn said it would cost Barbados more if the country ends up turning to the IMF when it is “down and out”.


      p>“We are almost down and out already but it will simply cost more. The noose around our neck right now is the current account deficit on the fiscal account as well as and the fact that the Central Bank is a willing participant in allowing the Government to continue to spend by printing money,” added the economist.


      p>“We absolutely need to go to the IMF and we should have done so a long time ago but clearly Central Bank and the fiscal authorities seem to convince themselves that they don’t need any help when clearly they do. And at this point the International Monetary Fund is the only institution that is capable of remedying this situation given the enormity. This is not a normal fiscal situation that Barbados has found itself in. To bring ourselves out of this we really do need to get some external intervention to bring some order to the public finances,” insisted Straughn.


      p>Saying that the country lost about $100 million in the first month of this year, Straughn forecasted that by the end of March “we will be right back at square one where we would have been had we not borrowed” the $300 million in December.


      p>He said Government therefore had no time to implement its measures to achieve the goals, adding that some “heavy lifting” would be required next financial year.

  32. We have only reviewed these words of the international bailiffs, and have some initial comments. First, it appears to us that this document reaches into the operational framework of Sagicor as a monopolist and regional hegemon. Secondly, while the international landlords of Barbados are seeking to arrogate unto themselves the exclusive right to create an endless supply of money, they want to institute unprecedented measures to interfere in the Barbados economy with credit contractionary mandates. Thirdly, they seem intent on interfering with the operations of the indigenous credit union movement thereby limiting traditional practice. This has to be resisted. Fourthly, the imperialist World Bank/IMF
    seem to be signaling to the international banking sector (offshore) that the run on the foreign exchange position of Barbados is to be continue until further notice. Fifthly, they are asking Barbados to do the impossible, within the short term, while holding out a faint hope that a nominal recovery could be expected by 2015. This is nonsense after nearly a decade of marginal or reclining growth. But is this measure of any particular future value.

    Having just arrived from the dwellings of our Dogon ancestors on the dog star it becomes impossible to believe that these imperialist forces feel confident enough to ask a country to pay such a price for the problems fueled by the unceasing credit expansionary policies of the FED and other leading central banks over more than a decade. Credit expansion that found its way into the financial system of Barbados through the very offshore banks they are now willing to give a pass to. And yes, the fecklessness of the local elites were too busy disgorging themselves of products of cheap credit to properly measure the social and economic death they were imposing of the people of Barbados. Even the people themselves are no less innocent. All kinds of conspicuous consumption was the order of the day. Now that empire is seeking to protect itself from its own monumental economic folly, Bajans and the rest of the ‘developing’ world are to have hell to pay.

  33. @ David (BU)..Barbados Today reported that Ryan Straughan is not optimistic about the government meeting its targets, and he believes it should approach the IMF and enter a program immediately.

  34. It is interesting to reflect that a couple of years ago, almost without exception, everyone said we had to keep the IMF out of the country as they would ruin the economy with their policies. Now, we point to the IMF’s report from two years ago and say that if only we had done those things at that time the economy would be ok now. If there is one thing I hope we take away from this tragedy it is that sometimes we should listen to experts from outside, however much it upsets us.
    The IMF is not an “international bailiff” and “imperialist force”. It offers advice, and if we want to ignore it, there is nothing they can do about it. Failure to accept the advice, based on the experience of the last few years, is likely to mean the economy ends up as a basket-case. Our choice, though.
    The mess that is the Barbados economy really isn’t the fault of “international landlords”. It may be the fault of “feckless local elites”, if by that you mean the current crop of politicians in power.

  35. St George’s Dragon

    See mine of February 13, 2014 at 1:50 PM

    Many of the main recommendations in the 2011 Article IV report were not addressed – because of general elections

    The 2012 Article IV consultation was deferred because of general elections until end of 2013.

    Not only does Government not listen to experts from outside; they do not even want to here from them.

  36. @ Bushie
    I agree with you re frustrated businessman.

    On another note, looka the cawmere mafia all over BU: Straughn, Graham and Warrick…lol.

  37. “are-we-there-yet? | February 12, 2014 at 7:19 PM |

    I wonder what prompted these recommendations from the IMF?

    Include in the CBB Act a provision stipulating conditions under which the Governor can be removed. Revise provisions that allow Ministry of Finance (MoF) to overrule CBB’s corrective measures”

    Me too; but from a different angle considering that Central Bank governors have been fired unceremoniously before and there was one who unashamedly proclaimed that ‘he was creature of the Minister of finance.’

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