Foreign Reserves Continue to Fall

Barbados foreign exchange reserves at June 2017

It is the silly season and if we are to judge from debates of the past leading up to a general election, it is unlikely such an important issue will take place devoid of political claptrap. All indicators about the health of the foreign reserves confirm that this government has been unable to change the downward trend. At his last utterance the minister of finance confirmed that Barbados’ foreign reserves are holding at 8 weeks of import cover.

It feels like déjà vu to some of us who experienced the period of the early 90s presided over by Erskine Sandiford. There was flight of foreign exchange and pleas had to be made by the government to the Barbados Mutual Assurance Society and other companies that enjoyed permission to invest a percentage of pension funds overseas to assist the country by transferring to the Central Bank of Barbados. While addressing an ICAB session this week minister of finance Chris Sinckler issued a similar plea to the private sector- to return forex to the country to bolster the foreign reserves. Was there a hint of distrust to be gleaned from the minister’s tone that the private sector is hoarding forex?

Another interesting observation arising from the minister’s address was the obvious impatience directed at the Commissioners of the Fair Trade Commission as it relates to the pending application for the sale of BNTC to Simpsons Oil. It is unusual for a minister of finance to be blatantly critical of a regulator. What if minister of commerce Donville Inniss were to criticize the Central Bank for example?  Surely the minister of finance- given his lofty position in government- should be aware of the reason why the FTC decision is pending? Is this an attempt to intimidate the Commissioners of the FTC? An element of desperation perhaps?

The greater concern about the depleted foreign reserves is not that Sinckler hinted that the government can compulsorily acquire forex held by commercial banks if the forex situation continue to deteriorate. We can only speculate what the principals of the Canadian banks are plotting in reaction to the recent decision by the Central Bank of Barbados to increase the reserve requirement and now the veil threat by the minister of finance to access forex held by commercial banks. BU cannot find a single case where a so called third world country intimidated an international bank.

What minister Sinckler and the government must appreciate is that the current state and his mouthing will not inspire confidence in the market. In fact, it is clear the private sector has lost confidence in the government. One only has to listen to head of the Barbados Private Sector Association Charles Herbert who represents that sector. One has to listen to Eddie Abed who represents the Barbados Chamber of Commerce. One has to listen to Dean Straker who is head of the Barbados Small Business Association. This is not an exhaustive list.

If we analyze the graph there is the obvious conclusion to be made that the government has been unable to implement policies to earn adequate amounts of foreign exchange. The policy of selling the family silver- analogous to when another DLP government in the 90s sold C&W shares- is not sustainable. If the FTC approves the BNTCL deal all it does is to kick the foreign exchange can down the road. There is a hole in the bucket dear Lila, dear Lila.



  • millertheanunnaki

    @ Hal Austin November 12, 2017 at 3:14 PM

    If a big-up asinine self-appointed financial journalist like the Mighty Hal can’t find out if the answer is simply “Yes” or “No”, how to do you expect a semi-literate dick like the lowly anonymous(e) miller who has serious challenges with the Queen’s language to know such esoteric stuff?

    Why not go and ask the nonagenarian Queen herself? Even if it means having to remove ‘Her’ hearing piece to recognize the porcine-looking fakir from one of the ex-colonies now begging for alms.

    Given your habit of ‘name-dropping’ of your list of highly placed contacts that shouldn’t be too much of a difficult mission for you to accomplish, should it?

    But you can wait a bit longer since the language will soon be the King’s.

    We all know how well connected with the Prince(s) “You” are, so access would be like snapping your finger to your black boy-in-waiting.

    But you can always take a shortcut by consulting, through a séance, your dear departed friend that Guyanese born fellow called the dead DPP using Rev. Bonke and his sidekick Durant as your mediums.

    The problem with you, shallow Hal, is that you are a ‘literal’ mouse being chased by a bright-coloured cat called Sarcasm around a room full of innuendo, the ironic depths of which you would never be able to fathom given your lack of appreciation of ‘Advanced’ English Literature.

    Try broadening your horizon by getting hold of a copy of the “Complete Works of Shakespeare”. You might just experience a Damascene moment of epiphany, the dimensions of which might just overwhelm you, totally.

    Now sit, dog! Your ‘English’ Master commands you.


  • Dr. Simple Simon Phd

    @Artax November 12, 2017 at 12:03 PM “Wuh is de name uh dah university you attended to get dah PhD? Or did you received it through a diploma mill?”

    I created my own university, my own accrediting agency and granted myself the Pdh, easy so.

    I can turn you into Dr. Artax, Phd for a small…ahem…consideration.

    Lemme know.


  • Dr. Simple Simon Phd

    @Fractured BLP November 11, 2017 at 8:39 AM “His Majesty King 👑 Freundel Jerome Stuart and some of his Officers of the Kingdom , will be conversing with their loyal subjects tomorrow, November 12 , 2017 at St. Michael school at 4:30 pm.”

    I wasn’t able to make it.

    So, what was the outcome?


  • Dr. Simple Simon Phd

    So what did his majesty say?


  • ” The Citizens Action Partnership (CAP) is ready to tear the traditional two-party system to shreds and take over Barbados politically .”

    That was the promise from leader Wendell Callender.”……a Kolij old boy.

    The vultures are circling to feed off the DLP carcass.


  • Well written.
    Yes there is a huge confidence gap.
    Hasn’t the seize and replace with $Bds of non-registered foreign currency accounts already begun? generally scratch grain mind you.


  • Well Well & Cut N' Paste At Your Service

    Dr. Simple…bet ya the yardfowls did not hear a word Fruendel said especially u6f he was talking in Shakespeare to impress, they understood nothin, but were shaking their heads up and down like bobblehead dolls and yardfowls are known to do……lol

    Yardfowls are useless.


  • Dr. Simple Simon Phd

    @Dr. Simple Simon Phd November 12, 2017 at 9:33 PM “So what did his majesty say?”

    More than 25 hours have passed since I asked the question above, and strangely no answer as yet.



    The PM referred to in the above article…….is not the PM of Barbados 🇧🇧.

    So understand – for those who deliberately choose not to do so – the global economic situation is REAL leaving very few Caribbean countries untouched.


  • And for those who deliberately choose not to answer this $109,609 question …………… I’m going to ask again:

    How come the DLP is indebted to the state-owned agency, CBC, in the amount of $109,609, under circumstances where the minister responsible for CBC and president of the DLP is the same man……… Freundel Stuart?


  • Fcuktured BLP

    You prepared to accept the word of a man who said the 1929 anti-corruption law is adequate enough for these times?



    The PM in the story above & the country listed is not BARBADOS 🇧🇧

    But over in that country referred to in the article……economic challenges abound to the extent that the government there have to borrow money 💰 monthly …….to pay Civil Servants.


  • Fractured BLP

    You and intelligent, rational thinking Barbadians know that comparing Trinidad & Tobago’s economic circumstances with that of Barbados, is shiite……..

    ………………yet, you continue to do so, mainly for reasons of political expediency and to fool gullible DLP yard-fowls.

    However, you have CONTINUED REFUSING to answer the hundred & nine thousand dollar ($109,000) question………….

    Why is this inept DLP administration INDEBTED to the state-owned agency, CBC, in the amount of $109,609, under CIRCUMSTANCES where the minister responsible for CBC and president of the DLP is the same man……… Freundel Stuart?


  • Dr. Simple Simon Phd November 12, 2017 at 9:10 PM #

    “I created my own university, my own accrediting agency and granted myself the PhD, easy so. I can turn you into Dr. Artax, Phd for a small…ahem…consideration.”

    Dr. SS PhD

    Not me and you, boh……. I ain’t gine down dah line……..

    “Dr.” Denis Lowe may need your services more than I do………. and make sure that “consideration” is a FEE.


  • Not only that…

    But if Trickidad OWNS Brassbados…
    ..and T&T is broke to the point of having to BORROW money for salaries..
    What is the chance that they have ALREADY extracted the full extent of what they could from the little shiite colony of which they are the Massa … or Massy … or whatever the shiite they are..?

    What are the chances that recovery will come to their Bajan plantation …before it comes back to T&T?

    Do us a favour Fractured…..
    Explain the concept of “hara-kari” to Froon and Stinkliar… PLEASE..!!!


  • Artax November 13, 2017 at 11:13 PM #

    The government is bankrupt.


  • It’s official

    Her Honour , Marie Thompson M.P for St. John will not be contesting the upcoming General Elections.

    On behalf of the people of Barbados and St. Lucia – we extend our heartfelt thanks to Mara for dedicating her time and energy over the past few years in uplifting the body politic in St. John and Barbados 🇧🇧 as a whole.

    Mara’s leaving the political stage , now paves the way for a young DLP turk to ascend the political stage.

    My preferred candidate is Bushie – of the Brass Bowl variety.


  • So………. we could assume Stephen Lashley actually sent that e-mail to Stuart asking to be considered as the representative for St. John?

    And since the information came to light, the DLP’s replacement for that constituency is either Esther Buyer-Suckoo or Irene Sandiford-garner?


  • The rising oil price signals hope for the T&T economy. The same is not true for Barbados.

    On Wednesday, 15 November 2017, Barbados Underground wrote: >


  • Artax

    No need for you to work up yourself about the DLP strategy.

    What you need to focus on is the following:

    •. George Payne have a case in the High Court against Edmund Hinkson .

    •. Mia Mottley need to produce her legal qualifications.

    While you trying to get your ” United BLP ” house in order

    The true United DLP team will be at Alexandra school on Sunday 19 November, 2017

    Dems NOW ……Dems AGAIN


  • Call an early general election.


  • Artax

    My understanding is that the DLP nomination for the St. John would be no other than George Pilgrim, its long-serving and loyal General Secretary. Mind you, I am of the view that Freundel would be wise to switch if he wants to stay in parliament since he has overstayed his welcome plus Kirk Humphrey has him on the ropes.

    Sent from my iPad


  • Dr. Simple Simon Phd

    I for one am not at all surprised that Mara does not intend to continue.

    As it happens I like George and if he is nominated I wish him well.

    Simple Simon, neither “B” nor “D”


  • Dr. Simple Simon Phd

    But I don’t live in St. John.

    So no vote from me to him.

    But sending him the love.


  • Artax: I am surprise that after the denial by a Lashley regarding the alleged statement about running for that constituency, we now hear that the holder is not running. That mean that the favourite looser who managed the State Funeral of the late Chief Justice will get that nod from her boss.


  • Do not run with what Fractured BLP has stated, he is not a credible source.


  • Irene Sandiford-Garner should replace Mara in St.John.


  • In the meanwhile …….

    Maloney is not baloney in a race car and he is contributing to the economy of Guyana.

    “Mark Maloney and Mark Thompson clinched back-to-back CMRC titles on Sunday in the final round of the regional series at the South Dakota racing circuit in Guyana.”

    Bajans champs again.


  • Fcuktured DLP

    I’m neither a member nor supporter of the Barbados Labour Party and unlike you, I’m not a political yard-fowl. And as such, I don’t have to concern myself with anything pertaining to that party or its members.

    However, since you’re a DLP yard-fowl, you should also concern yourself with:

    ……….this inept DLP administration being unable to defend their tenure in office during the past 9 years and 9 months;

    ……….the ABYSMAL FAILURE of the BOMBASTIC Christopher Sinckler as Minister of Finance;


    ……….the FAILED economic policies;

    ……….Over 1,500 NHC houses that remain UNOCCUPIED and ROTTING;

    ……….how the DEMS could pay Bobby Morris as CARICOM Ambassador and to date his only achievements are giving history lectures and addressing the DLP party faithful;

    ……….Oistins Bay Gardens is a health hazard……….. and under circumstances where the constituency representative is none other than the Minister of Health, John Boyce ;

    ……….the DLP borrowing MORE in 9 years than the BLP did in 14 years;

    ……….DLP lackey Sandra Forde as an ABYSMAL FAILURE as GM of the Transport Board;

    ……….an increase in flooding and pot-holes;

    Freundel Stuart being the WORSE PM in the history of post independence Barbados;

    Hal Gollop LEC charging BWA $1.5M for providing legal services, under questionable circumstances and Richard Byer LEC charging the Caves of Barbados $767,000 for services another lawyer previously performed for $19,000.

    The above are some of the NATIONAL ISSUES that are of CONCERN to sensible Barbadians……………..

    ……………………not TRIVIAL and PAROCHIAL issues such as if “George Payne has a case in the High Court against Edmund Hinkson” or Mottley qualifications

    It’s only semi-illiterate ignorant yard-fowls such as you, would want to convince rational thinking Barbadians that a shiite court case between Payne and Hinkson is of national prominence.

    But to this day, Barbadians still REMEMBER the CIVIL SUIT re John Griffiths versus the DISHONEST Michael Carrington (LEC), where the latter ILLEGALLY WITH-HELD the FUNDS of his former, WHEEL CHAIR BOUND, SENIOR CITIZEN CLIENT and had to be ordered by the court to repay the sum.

    But what is of the utmost importance is the fact that this inept DLP administration is INDEBTED to the state-owned agency, CBC, in the amount of $109,609, under CIRCUMSTANCES where the minister responsible for CBC and president of the DLP is the same man……… Freundel Stuart.

    This really looks terrible on the DLP.


  • @ Caswell

    I heard the DEMS were considering a “high profile” candidate that lost in the last general elections.

    However, if your comment is true, (and under these circumstances, you are yet to be proven incorrect), and George Pilgrim is in fact Mara Thompson’s replacement for the St. John constituency………….

    …………… then the DLP is obviously desperate and “SCRAPING THE BOTTOM OF THE BARREL.”

    But CHOOSING Mara Thompson was also “scraping the bottom of the barrel,” but they “saved face” because David Thompson was her husband.

    As it relates to Freundel Stuart switching to St. John, I believe he would LOSE, because he is popular only among SOME of the DLP party faithful……………..

    …………… and especially against the back ground of Mara Thompson, who is a mediocre politician and representative, recently reminding the DLP and by extension, Barbadians, that her party has not done anything during the past 9 years to improve the lot of her constituents.

    However, according to calypsonian “iWeb,”……….. “votes selling.”……….. hahahahahaha!!


  • David

    Look 👀 in the mirror

    You are the one who is just NOT …….CREDIBLE !

    By the way , what are you & your buddy , Dr. George Belle up to these days ?????

    Any more plans for assaulting UWI , project funding ??????


  • Belle is retired unlike Michael Carrington. How would John Griffiths refer to Carrington?

    On Wed, Nov 15, 2017 at 9:11 PM, Barbados Underground wrote:



  • What does it say of the state of the DLP when a sitting member string them out and did not even bother to tell the leadership that she aint running with them again………she told the newspaper.

    That tells us that she was totally fed up with dem, she could not get a road fixed in St John and just think that the dems begged that woman to run in 2010……..deemed her a queen.

    Wow, time really reveals the truth!


  • This government has very little to show especially when it comes to capital works only if you call Valery and the Grotto capital works……contracts they gave to one man to build.

    These dems were adamantly opposed to the rebuilding of the Hilton and now have the gall to sell it?

    These morons have hot sticky fingers and believe me……..that 100 million will not last as long as a snow cone in a desert………by the time it hits the Central Bank …….it is gone and so would our best asset…….and to think that the pretend leader said in 2013, no privitisation under his watch………..what liars!

    The people, we the taxpayers to whom the Hilton belongs need to be told who came up with that 100 million dollar price tag. Was a valuation done and by whom and for how much. I hope not another 1.5 million for any lackey.

    We deserve to know as we cannot trust these dems, they have worn out their welcome and would not call the election for the people to kick their arses out!


  • Prodigirl

    Fret not thyself !

    In 2013 you BLPites call for elections ……the day February 21, 2013 came …….on that said night you cried in DEFEAT !!!!

    Major cause for your defeat that time : The little note 📝 that Owen gave to PM Stuart …..” Oh pleaseeeee tek Mia off muh hand ”

    That moment truly showed that the Bees were truly DIVIDED !!

    You all on the same war cry 😭 again !!!

    But looka your PROBLEMS this time around :

    • Edmund Hinkson called George Psyne a CROOK right after the general election defeat in 2013…,,,so George Payne filed a DEFAMATION suit in the High Court ….,,,which still remains before the Court today !

    • Mia Mottley cannot find her LEC ……when she ought to have possessed one !

    • Maria Agard have Mia and the BLP in Court for unfair dismal !

    • Three political parties that formed after the 2013 general elections…..are all made up of DISGRUNTLED ……BLPites !!

    So the above scenarios clearly shows you that the BLP cannot UNITE its own membership because it is a party made up of CROOKS !!!!

    If you doubt that. – go back to the mouthing of Lynnette Eastmond, David Gill , Edmund Hinkson, Wendell Callender , Maria Agard and the beat goes on …. ….

    So keep calling fuh elections………Prodigirl

    Yuh gine eat yuh $hit …..

    The campaign ain’t start yet ……


  • Prodigal

    How does “Edmund Hinkson calling George Payne a CROOK right after the general election defeat in 2013…,,,so George Payne filed a DEFAMATION suit in the High Court ….,,,which still remains before the Court today!”……………..

    ……… COMPARE WITH…………..

    ………………a VULNERABLE, WHEEL CHAIR BOUND, SENIOR CITIZEN & PENSIONER, John Griffiths, CALLING his former attorney and Speaker of the House, Michael Carrington a CROOK after he (Carrington) ILLEGALLY WITH-HELD funds he received from the sale of Griffiths’ property …….. and after Carrington REPEATEDLY IGNORED REQUESTS for SETTLEMENT, Griffiths subsequently filed a CIVIL suit in the High Court against the DISHONEST Carrington, who had to be ORDERED by the court to pay his former client?

    And after Carrington’s DISHONOURABLE deed, how could DEMS feel PROUD calling this crook, “HIS HONOUR?”


  • Prodigal

    How could Owen Arthur passing a note to Stuart asking him “Oh pleaseeeee tek Mia off muh hand,” (a scenario involving TWO members of a party………. Arthur & Mottley), indicates an ENTIRE party is DIVIDED…………….

    …………… when compared with……..

    ………….ELEVEN (11) DISSATISFIED Members of Parliament (MPs) comprising of 8 ministers and 3 backbenchers, who were seeking an “urgent audience” with Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, to discuss matters of “grave concern” pertaining to his LEADERSHIP STYLE?

    Or with………the DLP REJECTING Dr. David Estwick’s alternative economic policies, after he BEGGED for an audience to discuss them with his Cabinet colleagues?

    Or with……… Donville Inniss not towing the DLP line?

    Based on this compelling evidence, perhaps “Fractured BLP” should RENAME herself “Fractured DLP.”


  • Artax

    It is obvious that the DLP’s understanding of honour and honourable is different from the concept that most right-thinking understand.

    Sent from my iPad


  • BLP and DLP are the political elite of Barbados. They have the same common interest.

    Shady Lane, Port Gorge Hites, trips ova sees, shingle malt, pokey but not in,money an mo money and betta cars than the one I have in Canada.


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