Carving a Hotel Corridor
The six month old Mottley government cannot be accused of NOT making decisions. In the relatively short time since winning the government several initiatives have been promised with few started. There are private sector projects coming online- a few that have been in the pipeline before the Mottley government took up residence in Government House.
The most recent announcement by the government issued amidst the noise of the Christmas season is the plan to litter the coastline between Hastings and Paradise Beach with about twelve hotels with four receiving upgrades. What piqued the interest of the blogmaster was that areas in St. Lucy, Christ Church and St. Phillip will be identified for tourism related projects. The blogmaster suspects deals have already been cut in smoke-filled back rooms and what is left is the PR piece.
The question Barbadians must ask- are we happy continuing to pump millions in the tourism model? The way business is done in this sector requires generous concessions to be offered AND analysts agree there is significant foreign exchange leakage associated with the segment. The blogmaster is not suggesting we should neglect a sector all admit that is paying the bills. What we want to see is a different kind of investment to grow a more resilient economy.
During the Arthur administration BU posted concerns about the extent the coastline was being carved up to serve tourism development. One expects flyovers will enter the discussion at some point. Our opposition then and still relevant is that Barbados will lose its shine as a SID if we continue to morph into a concrete jungle. We are already seeing unusual changes with our coastline to suggest decisions taken are not in harmony with the environment. We struggle with implementing a waste management and efficient water system. Is it conceivable that we should be looking to ease our hand from the tourism investment mouth?
Regional governments and by extension the citizenry have demonstrated in the last twenty years a lack of innovation and creativity in the problem solving business.
You requested to have this matter posted. Expecting you to lead the discussion!