Hobson’s Choice | Debt Default or …

The following was posted as a comment by Northern Observer to the Congratulations to Ambassador David Comissiong blog. It is a comment that resonates with the blogmaster for the commonsense perspective it shares about the huge challenge facing the country given the diminishing forex reserves and inadequate foreign inflows – David, blogmaster   

“Mia unilateral decision to default on debt”

This is a horse you need to dismount. When a doctor tells you somebody has stage 4 cancer, and their life expectancy is 4 weeks, do you expect them to live for a year? Or you display anger towards the doctor, because you felt he didn’t consult with others? You haven’t heard it from 5 doctors, and they told you some weeks before the ‘patient was doing better’. So wha happen?

The continued decline in the Barbadian Sovereign Credit rating, told all of us in the financial world that a death was imminent. Junk status, is a polite term for saying, default is not official but imminent. The lower the junk rating, the more imminent the default. If you hold debt instruments, do not expect a full and timely settlement.

While I am all for transparency, I am unsure what you wanted the GoB to ‘discuss with the people’? Skinning local bond holders (which may still happen), does not solve the Fx problem of repaying monies in Fx, when your Fx reserves are perilously low. Rather than an official default you can try negotiating with each party, it takes time and can create animosity (and legal recourse) if one debtor feels treatment has been unequal. Default places all of them into the same basket. And buys time, and lowers expectations.
Default is a result of 13 consecutive years of accumulating Debt, and when the servicing costs exceed your ability to meet them.

So what would you like the GoB to discuss? That they will sell the Hilton and BNTCL for rock bottom prices and use the funds to pay down foreign loans. That the GoB will actively seek buyers for the BWA and any other asset of value, which can be used to bolster the Fx account. For what? Foreign lenders are not lending us money, whether we meet current loan terms or not. Foreign lenders have no collateral claims.

Defaulting was not a choice. The only choice was whether it happened now or at a later date. This way we get to keep (at least for now) the few meaningful public assets we have left. I can never ‘support a default’, but for the people of Barbados this was the “best” decision.

The challenge is, you choose not to accept, the Barbados public financial condition was as bad as it is, because you felt all the less-than-positive comments were coming from people you labelled as ‘the enemy’. They were B supporters. Many were, not B as in BLP, but B as in Barbados. They saw the bandages, they heard the prescriptions, and each time the bandage got changed, the wound was worse than before.

152 thoughts on “Hobson’s Choice | Debt Default or …

  1. Hmmmmm

    “Enrico Rossi – is unbridled BLP fowl poop – Lorenzo in another vesture.” (T. Inniss July 10, 2018 9:36 AM)

    Then he wrote the following:

    “I am not getting involved in this name calling and petty personal games played by some.”

    I suppose this is a recent change of heart.

  2. Imperative we know which idiot tried this stupid, dangerous stunt and how many pythons he managed to smuggle into Barbados over time, hope the fine is in excess of 50,000 dollars..


    “Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers at Miami International Airport stopped a passenger on his way to Barbados attempting to sneak a snake on a plane on Sunday.

    TSA agents say the passenger tried to “artfully conceal the snake inside the electronics of a hard drive, which was placed in a checked bag”.

  3. The point again is not that Mia Mottley has defaulted on sovereign debt but the way she did it.

    Let de ole man just introduce for those of you who are not myopic and senile like me the why she did this.

    As de ole man said previously “without any substantiation ” she has to effect an audit of the nefarious kickbacks thst have been operational for 10 years and which are killing the country.

    Now while I will not be so bold as to speculate and say that the haemorrhage she is seeking to stave will soon find it way into the pockets of her own breed or parasites, here is some food to point wunna in the direction of the nature of her problems

    The Nation newspaper recently announced “…A source said Bunbury was previously employed “as a handyman” by Mace Macro, the United Kingdom company which was appointed in 2009 to provide maintenance for the Supreme Court Complex. Mace Macro’s contract came to an end in 2015…”

    Now there are a few things about this matter that are self evident like the family teifing that Kellman did and dis person Bunbury has done.

    But there are a few things that are not so evident.

    Banbury the wife who works in the office of the Attorney General should be fired immediately after the procedural processes.

    That may seem like some sort of contradiction but wunna understands whu I am saying.

    Dale Marshall should immediately suspend she pun paid leave.

    I think that Charles Jong the Information Cuntsultant that she hired under the same contentious hiring practices should set up a web Page of Shame for these people names and faces.

    But, to speak of a more serious practice.


    By particulars these shall include the monies involved and the date of incorporation of the company and the directors names cause wunna dun know that Darcy dun use dat New Guernsey trick to export the money to demselves

    But even with all these safeguards all uh dem still going teif de free TREASURY money

  4. You are attempting to make an about turn while in “mid air.”

    You specifically wrote that “Rossi is unbridled BLP fowl poop”…and you are now attempting to deny it.

    Continue displaying your DISHONESTY.

  5. Enuff wrote at 10:51 “The IL fines back to the original levels. 🐝🐝🐝🐝”.
    If one is to be informed by the 12:30 VON news, the Leader of the Opposition did not seem to know this given his complaint that the fines in the tabled IL bill are lower than those proposed in a previous version.

    The Attorney General in tabling the IL bill and playing to the gallery, was recorded saying that he was going after those he KNEW (my emphasis) were corrupt but for which THERE WAS NO EVIDENCE.

  6. “The Attorney General in tabling the IL bill and playing to the gallery, was recorded saying that he was going after those he KNEW (my emphasis) were corrupt but for which THERE WAS NO EVIDENCE.”


    …….so Marshall can’t read to see who signed off and what, in which ministry nd in which department, dont he know who the minister of finance was…, follow the money and ask international police for help…proof does not present itself, real attorneys general and police know they have to go looking for proof to find it beyond a doubt.

    …..neither the AGs office, the DPPs office or the police force have the skills , ethics or intelligence to carry out any such investigations.

  7. And you still persist in responding?

    It says a lot about you, my friend. But you can’t help it.

    I will certainly continue to highlight the nonsense you post to this forum (as is my wont).

  8. Yes, and by you not resisting to responding once again, you have proven yourself to be correct.

    Wuh loss

  9. And on the same site the document “Guidelines for the certificate of recognition of CARICOM skills qualification”, volume 13. Published March 2016, by the Barbados Accreditation Council makes it is made clear on page 6 of that document that Haitians can acquire such certificates and are entitled to work in the following countries. So PM Mottley is simply reiterating long standing Barbados government policy.

    Qualifying Caribbean Community States:
     Antigua and Barbuda
     Barbados
     Belize
     Dominica
     Grenada
     Guyana
     HAITI
     Jamaica
     St. Kitts and Nevis
     St. Lucia
     St. Vincent and the Grenadines
     Suriname
     Trinidad and Tobago

  10. So if Haitians have not been coming to work in Barbados it may mean:

    They are unaware that they have such rights
    They do not have the skills covered by the regulations
    Skilled certificates are being unjustly withheld
    They have been finding greener pastures to the north, south, east and west of us.

    But Haitians have long had the right to work in Barbados and in the rest of Caricom

  11. The following categories of workers, whose countries are members of caricom are entitled to move and work freely In the Caribbean Community
    1. Graduates from all recognized universities in the world
    2. Artistes
    3. Musicians
    4. Sportspersons
    5. Media persons
    6. Teachers
    7. Professional Nurses
    8. Artisans
    9. Holders of Associate Degrees and comparable qualifications
    10. Household Domestics

    I recall being at St. Peter’s Church Hall, Speightstown, Barbados when the free movement of Caricom nationals was being discussed. I recall the Rex Nettleford was one of the panellists (and Professor Nettleford has been dead for 8 years) and I recall that at that time the idea being mooted was that the free movement of labour was to be restricted to UWI graduates only. Since then the categories of workers permitted to move freely to work has been expanded to any Caricom national who is a university or community college graduate as well as the other categories named above.

    Nothing new here therefore.

  12. TY SS

    The free movement of skills/labour basically entails the right of a CARICOM National to
    seek work or engage in gainful employment in all CARICOM Member States whether
    as a wage earner or non-wage earner, without the need to obtain a work permit in the
    Member State in which he/she desires to work.
    A CARICOM National is, according to Article 32.5:(A) of the Revised Treaty, a person
    who is regarded as a National of a Member State. This is the case if such person:
    – is a citizen of that State
    – has a connection with that State of a kind which entitles him/her to be
    regarded as belonging to or, if it be so expressed, as being a native or
    resident of the State for purpose of the laws thereof relating to immigration.
    Persons who are eligible for the Free Movement of Skills/Labour must be engaged in a
    legitimate economic activity in the CARICOM Single Market and Economy. There are
    currently no rights regarding free movement solely for the purposes of residency or
    permanent naturalization or citizenship. If a person just wishes to migrate from one
    CARICOM state to live in another, he/she must still apply for residency or citizenship,
    in accordance with the laws of that country.

  13. Which makes me wonder what the Certificate of Recognition of CARICOM Skills qualification is all about. A make work and charge a fee ting?

  14. Ping Pong
    Don’t rely on my posts. All parliamentary debates can now be viewed on the Parliament’s Youtube website, live and recorded. However, be careful becausen if you visit, the PM and her cohorts may be harvesting your data to exterminate you if you bad talk the government according to the Oracle of cartoons and everything IT related, including FB and GDPR…..murdaaa!😂🤣

  15. Northern Observer,
    It is my understanding that under the Barbados legislation graduates of UWI and the University of Guyana have a legal right of free movement. Graduates of other global universities also qualify on condition they obtain ministerial approval.
    So, graduates of a university which is little more than a good secondary school, have an advantage over graduates of our top Ivy League, Russell Group and other leading universities. I have always said you do not give ministers in small nations power then not to expect them to use it.
    I am a strong supporter of Caribbean unity, not just the English-speaking nations, but CARICOM is a dodo. In it s current form it is useless and undemocratic. Why can’t we have elections to CARICOM?

  16. Enuff
    it seems that it is Joseph Atherley and the lazy news media that need to visit the Parliament’s website.

  17. After reading the Barbados Today’s report of the contribution of Wilfred Abrahams to the IL debate, I am no wiser as to whether the proposed fines are the higher or lower quantums. It would seem that whatever is the case Mr Abrahams is blaming the Chief Parliamentary Counsel. So for Enuff and Mr Abrahams, Shaggy’s “It wasn’t me” is the song of the day!

  18. Ping Pong
    All you need to do is go ask the CPC if it is true. I remember when the issue of the reduction was raised on BU, I said it could be due to proportionality–the same point allegedly raised by the CPC. The explanation raised my eyebrow, but at the end of the day it is back to the original amount. You should go appear before the Select Committee and make your points.

    • @enuff

      The CPC can raise any issue with the draft, the committee responsible for reviewing the draft legislation would had the opportunity to insist the campaign promise of high fines were maintained? The BLP boast of planning years before the general election date of the 24 May, we should assume the size of the fines would not have been discussed in the context of concern expressed by the CPC?

  19. @HA
    it would seem upon reading the documentation provided by SS’s links. that education is not a factor; the distinction is between movement for employment versus movement for residency. There could well be another ‘agreement’ which covers where individuals were educated or employment classifications.

    The occurrence of a Newspaper Notice, stating that unable to find suitably qualified local applicants, the employer is seeking permission to hire someone else, is well known. The link SS provided suggests, employers are not required to seek work permits for Caricom nationals. Hence, when such notices appear today, it means they have not only been unable to find a suitably qualified Barbadian national, but a Caricom national. One wonders what the ‘acid test’ employers are subjected to, in order to show their search covered such persons.

  20. @NorthernObserver July 11, 2018 1:53 AM “Which makes me wonder what the Certificate of Recognition of CARICOM Skills qualification is all about. A make work and charge a fee ting?”

    As I was told by one of your people “you know that this is a document based society”

    The Caricom skilled national certificate is like a marriage certificate. You can live in the house with a woman for 60 years, raise ten children and pay the mortgage together, but a marriage certificate from the state certifies that the state recognizes your relationship as marriage. Or you can raise a child from you community from infancy to adulthood, but without a formal adoption certificate from the legal authorities some states would not recognize the parent/child relationship.

    So the Caricom skilled nationals certificate certifies that a person has met the legal requirements and has the paper to prove it.

    Your national was right “a document based society”

    Recently my bank, yes a Canadian bank asked me to prove to them who i was. At the time I had banked with them from 15 to 60, had never changed my name, and had lived at one address form birth to 24, and at the other until 60. Still your bank wanted me to prove who I was.

    I bank elsewhere.

  21. @Hal Austin July 11, 2018 5:21 AM “It is my understanding that under the Barbados legislation graduates of UWI and the University of Guyana have a legal right of free movement. Graduates of other global universities also qualify on condition they obtain ministerial approval.”

    Your understand is incorrect.

    Ministerial approval is NOT required for graduates of “top Ivy League, Russell Group and other leading universities.”

    The document, the law and the practice says graduates of all universities.

  22. David

    All plausible, but I’ll go with Abrahams explanation. Could they not have used the CPC argument to justify the lower fines? They didn’t. Remember I tell wunna–LEGACY.

  23. @NorthernObserver July 11, 2018 11:03 AM “The occurrence of a Newspaper Notice, stating that unable to find suitably qualified local applicants, the employer is seeking permission to hire someone else, is well known. The link SS provided suggests, employers are not required to seek work permits for Caricom nationals. Hence, when such notices appear today, it means they have not only been unable to find a suitably qualified Barbadian national, but a Caricom national. One wonders what the ‘acid test’ employers are subjected to, in order to show their search covered such persons.”

    In spite of all the noise about migration, immigration, movement of people etc. in fact most people are barnacles and tend to stay within just a few miles of the place where they were born.

    Rr where they have migrated.

    I would bet you anything that most Bajan migrants to the U.K, U.S.A., and Canada live within 50 miles of the port at which they landed decades ago.

  24. The Caribbean needs to dismantle all these old structures that are disenfranchising their people and destroy all the new systems they are creating to rob future generations by not putting your money in their banks… these are deliberately designed by evil people to keep systems in place to continue to rob black populations….

    the Canadian bank is running a new scam on Bajans, older people with bank accounts with this bank for decades, who no longer work and many do not pay their own utilities any longer so they have no proof of address anymore are being asked by this bank to have a JPs letter proving where they reside…one person I know produced the letter, removed their money and closed the account, find other ways to house your money..

    I know others who are patiently waiting to fix their business then close all their accounts with foreign banks..by now the Caribbean should have it’s own central bank and only local banks, get the foreign banks out of the Caribbean.


  25. @Hal Austin July 10, 2018 9:14 AM “…or is the prior occupant still there?”

    What if the prior occupant never occupied Ilaro Court?

    What if the building remains mostly empty except for official functions.

    What if our PM’s prefer to live in their own comfy houses?

  26. @Hal Austin July 11, 2018 5:10 PM “Simle Simon, Plse name the document.”

    You are still in London aren’t you?

  27. http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_Migration_Report_Embargov.pdf
    Migration and its impact on cities.An insight report. Published by the World Economic Forum. October 2017. page 7.
    “Migrants tend to be particularly concentrated in global cities, if they exist in their country of destination, as compared to other parts of the country. For instance, of the 6.8 million foreign-born people living in Canada, 46% reside in Toronto”

  28. SS…I guess that is the beauty of competition, you have a choice.

    In retail banking, the #1 reason for losing a client, is upsetting them, sometimes with minor bullshit. They can be a Bank customer for 20 years, with no good reason to stay, other than nobody has upset them. Once they are happy, they rarely look for alternates.

    I can drive in Canada, the USA, England, all over Europe, with my drivers license. Not in Bim. I have to go to a licensing office, stand in a usually 8+ person line, produce my Canadian drivers license, pay them $10, for them to copy by hand, information onto a carbon form (all but extinct), stamp it, and give me a document which allows me to drive for 3 mumffs. Yet Bajans can use their licenses abroad?

    Don’t get me started on trading stocks there. Yes, they love, love, love a piece of paper.

  29. @NorthernObserver
    Get started on trading stocks.
    I have been eyeing the market but the volume is low.
    Site is updated, but it is harder to get information.
    Bid prices and ask prices seem different to what I know.

  30. @ Enuff of Lorenzo duo

    I commiserate with you.

    Wunna dun vex dat Grenville Philips II open he mouf pun BU and voice he concerns bout dis act nuh?

    And to think wunna want to blame de officer at de drafting department fuh mekking dis unilateral change?

    Leh me tell you something bout Dale Nuff Teets Marshall

    Dere is no drafting clerk who cud change what this demigod Teets write and keep dem job.

    Wunna tink dat (And by wunna I mean Simmonds, Haynes Thorne Hinkson Marshall and Abrahams) fell bajans is bvhkunts?

    And in the melee all of the tricky shite get voted through cause wunna man Atherley only talk bout de red herring of the amount and not the fact that the declarations are not a yearly thing NOR ARE THEY DAFEGUARDED BY A THIRD PARTY OUTSIDE THE JURISDICTION

    Stroking de doggies and pokies of 300,000 People at the same time

    I guess the adults must be like dat but dere gots to be a law about doing that to children under the age of consent!

    Wunna wicked but de grandson going men z Cartoon to commerate your comment bout dis subject matter.

    Well done Enuff of Lorenzo duo

    I like you bad. Heheheheh Mia going soon box you in you face doah.

    You wid not shut to badword up and every time you mention shyte de grandson does you a cartoon dat does do an easy 300 heheheheh and in Oracle units dat is 5100 contacts x17

  31. Lol….Enuff is going to get a shock bigger than the exyardfowls which will be 100 times more potent and longer lasting. .

    …ya ain’t see the exyardfowls brigade and their stupid ex government ministers still can’t recover from that smack down from the people on May 24th.

  32. @TG3
    the BSE is unfortunate. It has minimal volume, but many of the costs of a higher volume enterprise.
    Most of the valuable enterprises are still private, with no intent to go public.
    And with BHL and BS&T takeovers, the BSE has lost more listed entities than it is gaining.
    The idea to list Int’l companies has been a bust so far.
    And this is similarly relevant to exchanges elsewhere in Caricom.
    The time is long past for a Caricom exchange?

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