Barbados Post COVID -19


[We’re] not having a Budget or anything soon because it is just too fluid [blogmaster’s emphasis] . . . The budget was not intended to have any new taxes and therefore there is no reason for an immediate budget and we therefore will wait and see,” Mottley told media managers during a meeting yesterday at Government Headquarters.

Source: Mottley: No budget, we’ll wait and see

Prime Minister Mia Mottley announced this week the cancellation of the Financial Statement and Budgetary Proposals  (budget). Some will agree with Mottley that government’s economic policy is heavily influenced by BERT and relieving the country from the annual talk shop starring MPs and Senators is welcomed.

The use of the word ‘fluid’ by the prime minister is interesting against the background of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many are fixated on the public health requirement. Policymakers must also think about positioning the country to recover quickly from the crisis.

The blogmaster hopes the reason offered by the prime minster for cancelling the ‘budget’ is the usual political flummery. Barbados finds itself in a tenuous position after many years of economic decline. Two years into BERT the COVID-19 pandemic could not have reared its head at a worse time. It exposes what we have always known – Barbados like other countries in the region are most vulnerable to shocks (exogenous). It defines an open economy.

It is the observation of this blogmaster that commenters in this forum and elsewhere experience difficulty walking and chewing gum when discussing the issues.  Of course public health safety is the priority but it cannot be the only priority.

Discuss for 25 marks how we must use another global crisis to reorder the way Barbadians do business at the household and national level.

What we have to worry about is that the virus DOES NOT force us to reorder how we manage our affairs at a national and household level. If we reorder how we manage our affairs then we would have nothing to worry about. If we continue to be lacking in vision, planning, willpower, effective leadership, active citizenship and energy we will soon regret it.

There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries. On such a full sea are we now afloat. And we must take the current when it serves, or lose our ventures – William Shakespeare

This is an OPPORTUNE time to pause and reflect. This pain need not be in vain!

Donna – BU Commenter





532 thoughts on “Barbados Post COVID -19

  1. Barbados has a moral right to treat any sick passengers on ANY ships in its waters/ports.(Quote)


  2. WHAT IS THE TREATMENT FOR SOMEONE THAN HAS CONTRCTED THE VIRUS and remain on the ship (which will have its own medical staff)?

    what is the treatment of a heart attacked victim that had come on shore (or is shot by one of the local hooligans)

    What are the economical cost of each case?

  3. fortyacresandamule
    March 21, 2020 2:37 AM

    @john. The denominator in italy is shorely known. And going by that ratio, their death rate is hovering around 9%. Unless italy is an outlier, this mortality rate ain’t no joke.


    Agree no joke but denominator is unknown, simple fact.

    Mortality rate cannot be determined at this stage!!

    No one knows how many are infected as everyone has not been tested and the situation is fluid.

    America loses up to 80,000 to flu in a bad year.

    In the particular instance of Swine Flu in 2009, approximately 17,000 died from the outbreak and 60 million were infected, mortality rate 0.023%.

    But who knows until the pandemic has run its course.

    “Calculating mortality rates during a disease epidemic is difficult, in part because the numbers of deaths and patients constantly change. That’s why World Health Organization (WHO) officials – who said last week that 3.4% of the people worldwide confirmed as having been infected with the new coronavirus had died – were careful not to describe that as a mortality rate or death rate (here). In 2013, Reuters reported (here) that at least one in five people worldwide were infected with swine flu during the first year of the 2009-2010 H1N1 pandemic, according to an international research group at the time, but the death rate was just 0.02 percent.”

  4. The mortality rate will be determined some time in the future, when the infections (denominator) and deaths (numerator) stop increasing.

    For now, it is a matter of trying to stem the flow by attacking the denominator and numerator separately.

  5. So now that BERT has gone BUST and she has to reorganize, remember that Whitehoax was hired on the premise that they could perform magic with BERT…to the tune eventually of 62 million, hope that is not US and an additional 85,000 US PER MONTH that they have been getting since early May, 2018…this is now 2020….there is no proof that they have produced substantially for those huge payments or delivered anything better than meeting IMF targets……so will there be some kinda refund now that the promised BERT MAGICIANS Whitehoax have not delivered and the shift is to blame Covid-19 for that cockup.

    What would they still need all these consultants for when very early on Legarde former IMF head said that poor islands should not need consultants, since we always hear the lying politicians always claim they can walk on water and turn bread to wine…she should be answering those questions, if Barbados had a media that was not too yellow belly to ask.

    She also refused to test 6 workers on a ship, i believe, suspected cases that the ship requested, so i guess there is some wiggle room in what she can refuse to do, they should still be responsibility, the shipping company and should have insurance for their employees on the ships.

    Here is a very valid reason why one should never trust anything that UK and their imps and pimps say, i always knew there was more to that story, because of course you are dealing with UK.. They are still denying Caribbean people born under the British flag DUAL UK CITIZENSHIP.

    “Nathaniel moved from the Caribbean to the UK as a citizen, when his birth “country” was still part of the British Empire. Because of this, many people from the Caribbean, including my grandmother, arrived on British passports. Others, like my aunts, arrived later on their parents’ passports. They lived, worked and had families without the need for documents. But new immigration laws in 2014 and 2016 forced individuals to prove their status to access basic public services, rent housing or start a new job.

    Wendy Williams, author of the Lessons Learned review, found that a lack of understanding of this history by Home Office staff and successive governments was a root cause of the Windrush scandal, calling it “institutional ignorance and thoughtlessness towards the issue of race and the history of the Windrush generation”.

    The comprehensive report shows us how immigration legislation in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s made it harder for people of colour to move to the UK and laid the architecture for the scandal. Commonwealth citizens who moved to the UK before 1973 were entitled to stay and didn’t need to prove it. They had the option to register before 1987 – but the government’s own publicity at the time said there would be “no consequences” if they didn’t.”

  6. While we remain steadfastly committed in support of the gallant efforts of regional governments in combatting the COVID-19, we are also aware, that the economies of the various countries may never be the same.

    The question surfacing among progressive voices is whether it is possible to finally rid ourselves of the plantation economy, while we seek to remodel our fiscal approach after the COVID-19 era. It is widely believed that the effects of this malady, will impact for at least another five or ten years. The COVID -19 has taught us that the best of plans can be disrupted by totally unforeseen and unexpected events. As our elders used to drive in our heads: “Trouble don’t set up like rain”.

    While we certainly do not expect the remnants of the plantation economy to simply disappear; we believe that any restructuring of our economies, must involve a decreased dependency on tourism and food imports, if our economies are to ever become sustainably stronger. In recent weeks, we have witnessed leaders throughout the region trying to keep their air and seaports opened, in order to negate the shocks of COVID-19. However, closed or opened, we simply could not expect any tourists to be seeking sun, blue waters and white sands at this time.

    Suddenly, there were voices lamenting the fact, that in most territories, the agricultural industry had taken back seat to tourism. Small farmers had become accustomed to the iron birds depositing smiling foreign faces eager to enjoy the experience of “de islands”. In the meantime, the farmers struggled to keep the agricultural industries afloat.

    The fickle realities of the tourism industry have now been laid bare before our very eyes. We always knew that any global occurrence of the COVID -19 magnitude, will devastate those economies that depended on the iron birds and floating hotels. We are reminded of yet another saying: “The stone that the builder refuse will become the head corner stone”.

    We expect our technocrats to continue their efforts in removing the remnants of the plantation economy, but we can rebuild our agricultural industry because we need look no farther than our own individual back yards and try to grow something. At least we will now be growing it for ourselves and not overlords in England and elsewhere. Having overcome physical slavery, we must now remove economic slavery. We have no doubt that the iron birds and floating hotels will return. They can fly and sail, but we must eat!

    We continue to give full solidarity to our regional leaders, as they continue their gallant efforts in battling the effects of the COVI9-19.

    ( On behalf of the Mahogany Coconut Group).

  7. @ Hal,

    793 fatalities in Italy; whilst in Spain they have breached the 300 mark.

    There seems to be a large number of cruise ships loitering within our waters.

    • Before this comment provokes the usual subjects, the point has been made repeatedly that Barbados is home port for several cruise ships. Some of them have crew members onboard who will be airlifted from the island if they have not been already.

  8. @TLSN

    We should pull up the shutters on our borders, apart from goods and services. Allowing Barbados to be the home port for cruise ship passengers flying out of Europe, mainly the UK, was a convenience, but the inconvenient truth is that it could be expensive. We should also confined people to their homes and get non-essential traffic off the streets.
    I mentioned some time ago that the cruise industry is a direct rival to our long stay tourism model. Even the taxi firms are pushed out by the local agents hiring their own transport. In fact, it is worse then the exclusive model.
    Did you listen to the president’s three-hour long rambling, nonsensical, incoherent speech. It was badly in need of good editing – an advantage when a speech is written. I wonder if the BGIS is going to transcribe the speech and post it on its site?
    In the meantime, I still want to know if our mathematicians at the UWI have done any epidemiological models on the viral transfer. At a time like this we need sound political leadership. Even Boris has stepped up. What we get in Barbados is waffle.

    • Wondering why the PRIME MINISTERS’s Speech would have to be transcribed if there is a video readily available.

  9. @ Hal
    The MCG is committed to the emergence of one Caribbean Nation.It’s mission is to enlighten others by commentary on regional and international matters as they affect the region. Over the years MCG has become a voice in the Diaspora.

  10. I went out for a nice walk early this morning.

    I didn’t breath on anybody, and nobody breathed on me.

  11. @ William

    Very positive. I am still waiting for the voice of CARICOM to speak out, the alignment of policies, the sharing of expertise and best practice.
    Instead we are getting more and more waffle – a one note samba.

  12. Quite frankly, I have no problem with the prime minister’s actions so far. It seems that businesses, including financial institutions, are stepping up as is the beautiful Rihanna. If Barbadians stay alert and informed I remain hopeful that we will come out better on the other side. Of course, I could be totally wrong but this is my position at present.

    As for those who think we should abandon those on the cruise ships I will remind you that Bajans too love a cruise. There is also a saying that wherever you go in the world you are sure to meet a Bajan.

    The prime minister has to juggle many flame throwers whilst walking a flaming tightrope.

    Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown,” TheO reminded us a few weeks ago.

    This is the greatest test for Mia and I for one pray that she passes with flying colours. I would advise her that this is the ideal time to break the smoking habit she has had from schooldays. If she survives this virus she should be far more healthy in time for the next.

    PS. John is indeed correct that the denominator is yet unknown. After all the panic we may find that this was indeed less alarming than we thought but even if it is so we will be better prepared for the next more lethal disease.

    Since countries that manufacture goods are already signalling that home drum beats first, i think we have an opportunity here to tell the WTO to take many of their small economy killer regulations and stuff them. This may be the dawning of a new day!

    This pain need not be in vain!

  13. Caricom leaders have met and discussed. They are in constant contact. Waffles taste good and samba dancing is a good way to lose weight and enjoy it.

  14. @ David.

    This is one of the times I am sorry to be proven right under the wrong conditions. Lol

    What I will say is the MOF has basically taken a turnaround on policy and I am happy she did not pull a Sinkler, thereby bringing a revised revision of the revised plan! There is nothing wrong with admitting BERT was a failure, especially at a time of crisis. As you know I support no party and ” does cuss dem both.” I would say what the PM released yesterday was a decent stimulus package under our current conditions.

    I still think though she will come back to us and have to tighten the noose around the banks, as in am not sure she went far enough there. Other than that I can’t fault her on her first corona innings.

  15. @ Donna,

    Bakes and a mango would be my

    @ John A,

    The PM and the government doing the best they know how.

    I believe the effects of this crisis COULD last at least 1 or 2 years

  16. @Hal Austin March 20, 2020 12:00 PM “A young teaching assistant has just been mugged for her groceries in West Sussex. The UK is now a jungle.”

    With no request from me a young friend just brought me a couple of hundred dollars worth of food and cleaning supplies. No jungle here, yet.

  17. @Miller March 20, 2020 7:53 AM “Silly Woman You are right on the comparison between you and Bolt. A volte-face of a Lightning turnaround in your early position when you argue that Covid was nothing but another garden variety of the common harmless yearly bug called the flu.”

    I’ve never argued any such thing. What I did say earlier is that after 1492 a series of Pandemics [or hemi-demics] swept through the “Americas” and that those hemi-demics killed 3/4 of the indigenous populations. And that those peoples were also god’s people

    Too many medical people in the family for me to have misunderstood what has been happening since late December.

    Please note that smoking, primarily tobacco, but also likely marijuana smoking kills 5 million people worldwide each year…and it is hard as hell for medical people to get patients to break that deadly addiction.

    I mean why would anybody insert smoke into their lungs/

  18. @WURA-War-on-U March 20, 2020 3:11 AM “…take a taxi and go get a Pricemart card and buy ya necessities in bulk, once a month or even longer to expose yourself again when you do that.”

    My old man was so smart.

    i live within easy walking distance on not 1, not 2, but 3 food and general supply stores.

    I good…for now.

    P.S. For me an easy walk is anything up to 2 miles.

  19. Now the pattern the virus uses makes a little more sense.

    “A new study in The Lancet medical journal published Wednesday found that the novel coronavirus lived in the respiratory tracts of some patients for more than five weeks. Some of the patients received antiviral medications but the drugs did not appear to shorten the virus’s lifespan.

    The 19 doctors who authored the study analyzed the medical records of 191 patients in China (135 from Jinyintan Hospital and 56 from Wuhan Pulmonary Hospital), including the demographic, clinical, treatment and laboratory data of 137 coronavirus patients who were discharged and 54 patients who died in the hospital.

    They found that the virus was present in the bodies of patients with severe disease status for an average of 19 days, and inside the bodies of patients with critical disease status for an average of 24 days. Overall, the virus was detected for an average of 20 days in patients who were eventually discharged from the hospital. In the respiratory tracts of patients who died, coronavirus was detectable until death.”

  20. @ William

    There should be a two-pronged approach to tackling the coronavirus crisis: one at a regional level and one national. At the regional level we should have the scientists and policymakers, meeting daily and updating themselves on best practice. ie the China, South Korean and Singaporean reaction versus the UK and US.
    On the national level should be the application of policy: public health doctors, quarantining, border safety, internal travel restrictions, social distancing, fiscal policy, etc. again meeting daily (by remote) and responding to new developments ie contagion.
    There is also an argument for another time, @William. Note how the advocates of a small state are now silent when the state extends itself to save capitalism. It did the same in 2007/8 by taking private debt off the books of the banks and putting it on the state’s balance sheets. Not a single bank was put out of business for its recklessness.
    Sometimes the state has a function of saver of last resort.

    @ John A

    The speech was too long and tried to include too many things ie about a golf course, and the price of wall houses and wooden houses etc. There is a time and place fore such references. It should have been solemn as befits the occasion (no sending kisses to Atherley and other silly jokes). Three hours would have sent even a Russian politburo member to sleep.
    As I said, there were two speeches in one: the reaction to the pandemic and the Estimates. They should have been kept separate. The pandemic reaction should have been given on Thursday and the other one postponed for at least a week so as not to conflict. As to rhetoric, it was unimpressive. I have heard better by sixth formers.
    The stimulus should have happened in June 2018. The austerity measures were ill-advised, bad macroeconomics and plunged the nation in to deeper doo-doo. At least we would have saved the money we paid White Oaks. BERT is/was a disaster.
    There was also unintended humour as when she said there was a big international market for Barbados bonds. But there is always a big market for high-paying junk bonds.
    What I am not clear about is if the assets agency is a sovereign wealth fund? Is the list of 1500 most vulnerable families a complete list, and what benefits does being listed entitle them to? Does the list include squatters?
    I am still waiting to see the cascading of the debt to GDP ratio from 176 per cent to 118(?) per cent in less than two years. If this is true it is an economic miracle. How did it happen? Maybe the president or her economic advisers can explain.
    So too are the details of her re-negotiations with the IMF for a restructuring of the payments of the loans, based on a 50 per cent fall in tourism.
    If this 50 per cent assumption has been simulated, then let us here how it would impact the wider economy, and which sectors in particular.
    Then there is the voodoo of Bds$1.5bn in reserves. Is that before or after we have paid our debt, from the foreign creditors to the men and women laid off in 2018 and since? Does the list of the 1500 most vulnerable families include any of those families who the breadwinners lost their jobs?
    I can go on, but to properly analyse the speech we need the full details, including any fiscal impacts.

  21. Review all the data for information.

    “The shortest length of time the virus lived in the respiratory tract of a survivor was eight days. And perhaps most shocking of all, in some cases, the virus persisted for as long as 37 days.

    “This has important implications for both patient isolation decision making and guidance around the length of antiviral treatment,” the authors of the study concluded.

    For weeks, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been advising Americans who traveled to one of the virus’s epicenters or who may have been otherwise exposed to self-quarantine for 14 days. Does this study suggest the risk could persist longer? Well, not necessarily.

    CBS News medical contributor Dr. David Agus says using this study’s findings to extrapolate how long a person might be contagious is probably taking it a step too far.

    “This is an important study to understand the medical course of patients who have symptomatic cases of Covid-19 infection,” he said in an email. “I would be very cautious to use these data to quantify periods of being infectious. This information has yet to be determined definitively.”

  22. @robert lucas March 20, 2020 1:04 AM “I have no problem with your being nationalistic ( for some one who is opposed to the shedding of blood) you seem ready in this instance to take up arms.”

    Not particularly nationalistic. I pay my taxes, work hard, and do some volunteer work, but i have done that where ever i have lived. Nothing particularly nationalistic about those things.

    Not a fly in any danger from me. i won’t be taking up arms. I won’t be shedding any blood, unless perchance a yard fowl [literal, not political] comes into my yard and i am able to catch her.

    I am more a pacifist than anything else.

  23. @ Hal

    I would agree the speech was long and there was a bit too much politics in there given the seriousness of the situation. Then again if you were the PM and you had as weak an opposition at Atherley, you wouldn’t blow him a kiss too?

    What we need to see now is how the process of Implementation will unfold. This is a situation where time is of the essence. Companies may hold on till month end, but as of April you can bet they will be putting plans in place.

  24. @ Hal
    I can see relevance in all the comments. However, this is a calamity with which the region has not dealt with in the post independence era on a regional scale. At this time, I am throwing my support behind all regional governments. As we work through this crisis, new strategies will evolve. The most important approach at this time is to do all we can as nationalists to assist our brothers and sisters .A region scarce in resources cannot be expected to respond to such a crisis with immediate answers.
    There is no over night fix for what we are currently confronted.

  25. I did a little gardening this morning. It is nearly 5 now. let me go out into the sunshine and do some more until just after sunset.

    See ya!

  26. HantsMarch 21, 2020 3:02 PM

    @ Donna,

    Bakes and a mango would be my


    To answer an earlier comment, I did teach my son to make bakes. Then the best Food and Nutrition teacher in Barbados (according to us both) taught him a better method. She also taught him to do pumpkin fritters, banana bread and many tasty dishes that use local produce. Best choice he and I ever made with respect to his schooling.

    Along with the bakes and the mango you could also have a Bajan wuk up instead of the samba. But variety is the spice of life so when you get tired of one you could try the other.

    PS. We use Carmeta’s cassava flour for bakes, pancakes and dumplings and sweet potato flour for sweet treats. Got some grated cassava in my freezer for pone and some grated pumpkin for various dishes. All that’s left for us to do is get the garden growing.

  27. @ William

    Don’t follow our leaders down a dark tunnel just for the sake of ‘unity’. However urgent, leaders must explain themselves. Motives are important. I never assume the leaders and I are reading from the same song sheet.

  28. @ William

    Some silly person is playing games with deleting things from certain contributors. If that is their game……it proves my assessment of them.

  29. @ Hal
    I just don’t think we can seriously look at this crisis as we have looked at others. I have decided to look at it from this angle because of the nature of the crisis.

  30. This is so no good, the amount of people exposed to this 40 infected.

    “There has been a stunning new development in Trinidad and Tobago’s effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

    Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh this morning revealed that health officials had confirmed 40 new cases among the 68 people quarantined at Camp Balandra.

    The 40 were among those who were on the cruise ship docked off Guadeloupe for several days before Government chartered an aircraft to bring all 68 home on Tuesday.

    The cruise ship was denied permission to dock after multiple passengers, not Trinidadians, were confirmed with COVID-19.

    The group were moved from the aircraft, onto buses and taken in a convoy to the secured camp on Trinidad’s north east coast.

    On Thursday, all were swabbed to be tested.

    Before that, several fell ill with fever, cough, and lethargy.

    Several of those there are elderly.

    Between 9p.m and 10p.m. on Thursday, the tests results came back.

    The 40 have been moved to the Couva Hospital, and there is no risk of community Spread.

    The cruise ship passengers have hired senior counsel Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj, Deyalsingh disclosed. He did not say why.

    Regarding the 28 people at Balandra, that facility was properly sanitised, testing would resume on these people.”

  31. “P.S. For me an easy walk is anything up to 2 miles.”

    glad to hear, no more minivan rides for

  32. @ William
    @ Hal

    The way I see it is that we will be in a state of low economic activity for at least 9 months and based on the below is why I say this.

    Until infections in our major markets of North America and Europe start to show signs that they have topped out and that they are now steadily falling with no new cases reported, no one will consider travelling. Now once the decline hits a low level and continues to fall with no new cases, I believe we would then have 6 months from that date before we see visitors slowly returning.

    My point is as we are no where near capping out on new cases, farless declines being shown, we are way off the 6 month line of hope we can start counting from. Realistically we therefore need to brace for the long haul. Hopefully by the next winter season we will start to see some light.

  33. @ William

    I agree. Whatever the outcome, it will change our lives forever. That is what I am concerned about, the transformative nature of this pandemic. I look at how the Barbadian authorities respond, and how authorities in the UK respond. Either we are brilliant and got it right, or we are disastrously wrong.
    Streets in London are empty, all mass events cancelled, retired doctors and nurses called back to work, neighbours are keeping a safe distance, local hospitals are running out of beds. We must get it right firs time, there is no re-take.
    The health of ordinary people is my concern, not the reputations of politicians. I say again, last night’s speech was largely three-hours of waffle. Only one or two items were quality stuff.
    If for no other reason, because of the limited talent pool, we need a regional approach. By the way, if you are so inclined, read about the history of public health during the Victorian era. We benefited in Barbados, from a network of public toilets, the widespread use (overuse) of DDT, toilet pits, etc. We became obsessed with public health.
    We MUST get it right.

  34. @ David
    @ Hal
    When I responded to Hal, I did so after I looked at the MCG blog because I thought he had actually responded to an article about CARICOM on Mahogany Coconut.
    I wasn’t referring to BU at all. So to answer your question : Yes, I was referring to Mahogany. Apologies for any confusion.

  35. @ John A

    I do not share your optimism. We are experiencing an unprecedented level of a drop in global output; we are now officially in a glob al recession.
    If GDP drops by 10 per cent in the first half of the year, it is virtually impossible to recover that by the end of the year, with the possible exception of Singapore and Korea. It would be a reversal of economic history.
    Since 1960, there have only been 13 instances in which developed countries declined by 5 per cent; three case of 7 per cent, including Greece and none in which output declined by 10 per cent or more.
    And since 1870, the year before I was born, there have only been 47 instances of an economy declining by 10 percent, and that includes two world wars and a depression. 42 of those occurred between 1914 and 1945, and covered the Spanish Flu.
    Among rich nations with a decline of 5 per cent, it took on average four years to return to the pre-decline levels, and those were nations with large industrial sectors.
    I do not want to bore you with post-war economic history, but we are in new territory. To impose this challenge on a third world country, dependent on tourism, with a population of 280000, with over 41000 over the age of 70, and no industrial sector to talk of, is a big ask.
    Although I admire your optimism, I wonder if it is rooted in reality.
    The government has got to go back to the drawing board, revise its economic programme, inject a massive amount of money in the economy (print as if there is no tomorrow), decouple from the greenback, fix against a basket of currencies and commodities, invest in the futures markets more, then manage asset price inflation. Most of that money must be on job creation and education – not just taking CXC exams and getting PhDs in cultural studies or journalism, but education for a new world of work.

  36. The cruise industry wasn’t my cup of tea. The marginal benefit accrued to the country wasn’t worth the poaching and courting. On a broader level they should get no assistance from the USA government bailout package. First, they pay next to nothing in corporate taxes, using all kind of tax havens around the world. Most are registered in poor countries to circumvent labor laws and other regulations. Let them all fail.

  37. @ Hal

    When I say see some light I in no way mean a return to the activity we have now. What I mean is the the economy should bottom out by then as tourist hopefully may start to trickle in. I am also in no way saying that the next tourist season Will be anywhere near what we know a winter to be.

  38. Like some i am looking forward to regional unity one that can set the tone with one goal and with a commanilty of having a one single market that can provide for the needs of all in an out of crisis
    The tiger tail has been pulled too many times because of captalist greed
    The time has now come to show the world what is meant by great leadership in the Carribbean basin
    Also was expecting Mia as Head of Caricom to draw upon this crisis and have a news conference which would speak to the entire Caricom nations addressing a need for unity in this time of crisis

      MARCH 1, 2020
      1,593 LESS THAN A MINUTE

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      Chairman of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley, will host a special meeting in Barbados tomorrow, Sunday, March 1, to discuss ways of protecting the region from COVID-19.

      The meeting will take place in the Frangipani room at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, beginning at 12 noon.

      It will bring together some Heads of Government, Caribbean Ministers of Health and their chief medical officers, representatives from the Pan American Health Organization, the Caribbean Public Health Agency, the Caribbean Community Implementation Agency for Crime and Security and the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency.

      The decision to hold the special meeting was taken by Ms. Mottley following consultations with outgoing CARICOM Chairman, Prime Minister Allen Chastanet of St. Lucia, after both leaders participated in two emergency meetings on Wednesday, February 26, and Friday, February 28, of the Council for Human and Social Development (COHSOD) and Chief Medical Officers on COVID-19, via video conference.

      When they meet in Barbados, Caribbean leaders will consider a recommendation from the COHSOD Working group on regional coordination for management of the virus and other infectious diseases on passenger ships.

      Chief executive officers of cruise lines and airlines servicing the region will be invited to participate in the special session. A press conference will follow.

  39. @ William
    @John A

    By the way, Barbados had a serious outbreak of cholera in 1854. Anyone got details on how the nation recovered from that? I have already mentioned the introduction of public toilets, etc.

  40. Is the report true that barbados has 14 infected people on the island
    Still cant understand why Mia has the borders open
    The problem of contraction is not a maybe but when
    Only a week or so ago Barbados PM was full of confidence that barbados had no persons on the island with the virus
    A week.later and the number 14 pops up
    At the rate this virus is being contracted the entire island just might be contaminated and because of the lack of test kits available in large numbers carries of the virus can easily contaminated a great number of the population
    Mia it is time to close the borders
    Or it just might be too late

  41. Hal AustinMarch 21, 2020 5:04 PM

    @ William

    Some silly person is playing games with deleting things from certain contributors. If that is their game……it proves my assessment of them.

    Some pretty innocuous posts of mine do not appear and it has been so for many months. I just figure it is a glitch.

  42. close the ports from whom?

    Who coming to Barbados to go through two week of quarantine and then another two when they return to their country?

    It to large for your pea brain to realize that the borders are effective closed?

  43. In unprecedented times of national disaster that’s when you need a BIG STICK leader- chinese style.

  44. What a divine comedy on BU: First you scold our beloved Mia as a dictator, as a Caribbean Mao figure, as the Mugabe of the Caribbean, and now you call for dictatorship.

    • @fortyacresansamule

      All it confirms is that different leadership approaches are required based on the situation presented.

  45. @ Mr Hal Austin


    You said/asked

    “…By the way, Barbados had a serious outbreak of cholera in 1854. Anyone got details on how the nation recovered from that?

    I have already mentioned the introduction of public toilets, etc.”

    In the classic vein and response of Tron the skeptic comedian you will be delighted to know that The Government of Barbados has installed a comprehensive Public Toilet

    One is located at the House of Assembly at the top of Broad Street

    And the other one on Baystreet!

  46. @ Piece

    I have noticed that our social historians have not commented on one of the most important events in the history of public health in Barbados. Pandemics will happen, that is the nature of our existence. The trick is to remain ahead of them.
    In 1918, the Spanish Flu, hundreds of people were dying in the UK, but the government banned the media from publishing the stories; black people may also recall the Tuskegee Syphilis experiment; and, as late as the 1970s in the UK, the NHS blood service used to take blood from black people and dump it. They are now appealing for black donors. The job of the media is to hold the powerful to account.
    The point I am making is always be sceptical of the authorities; do not let them blind you with science. Do you remember Colin Powell at the United Nation talking about Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction, even when they were told by the UN officials there were no such weapons.
    Why are we so quick to believe this government about the level of coronavirus in Barbados, when they have made it clear that tourism comes top side and centre of their policies?
    The very least we should do is ask more questions.

  47. @ Piece the Legend March 22, 2020 5:52 AM


    As you know, I am the voice of cynical reason here.

    There is no reason to mistrust our government. Our great leader has done many things right in this crisis. The insane DLP aka Mariposa, on the other hand, wants to cut the island completely off from the outside world and turn it into a kind of blue concentration camp. We all know that we are totally dependent on capital and food imports. The DLP obviously wants to destroy society permanently, because it has also permanently lost power.

    But I wonder what will happen next. We will have a few tourists again in June at the earliest. We will lose tourism totally for three months and for the next two years 50 percent of our turnover with tourists.

    Our stock of foreign currency has been robbed only out of debt. It is therefore time to finally devalue the hated Barrow dollar. I suggest we start at a ratio of 1:3 and end at 1:10 for now, because we all know that the island is overpopulated and cannot feed on the little tourism left. To all those who are now preaching agriculture, I say that self-sufficiency is good, but it will halve the standard of living.

  48. @Tron
    ‘guessing’ you must have a cupboard full of Fx.
    Wondering….what should the globe’s punishment to China be, for giving us Covid?

  49. The Trumpers are coming out of the wood work. It is now a Chinese disease. What is the American disease? How about the Yanks planting the virus as part of a biological war against China and it backfired? Look at the history of the CIA in central America.

  50. “We all know that we are totally dependent on capital and food imports.”

    these fools are not even ashamed to say how DEPENDENT they are on everything, while the other Caribbean islands that they always pretended they are superior to have no such problem.

    Just finished speaking to someone from one of the other islands and they are not facing the same thing regarding food dependency at all, they will tell you they never had food problems post emancipation…WHY…because they have always grown their own food….so who are the most intelligent..

    53 years later and a pretend independence show every year and they are STILL DEPENDENT on everything..steupppss

  51. @ Hal,

    It’s a surreal, eerie feeling in the UK. Thank God that I left London many years ago. What comes next?

    We have an agriculture industry that we must both revive and add value to it. I agree with Waru.

  52. @ WURA-War-on-U,

    “necessity is the mother of invention”

    In the UK it is virtually impossible to get hold of hand sanitiser gel. A Scottish gin producer has halted their production of gin to concentrate on the production of this life saving gel. Barbados was allegedly the first country in the world to have invented rum. Another commercial opportunity missed?

  53. @ NorthernObserver March 22, 2020 11:37 AM

    China? Good question. Once the biological warfare ends, the real war begins. I don’t think the Americans will just tolerate the Corona mace from China, where they wade in the blood of freshly slaughtered bats and dogs in the markets.

    As far as foreign currency is concerned, I can only repeat that private creditors will certainly not accept a second debt cut after 6 months of maturity. I suspect that the natural disaster clause does not cover the Corona case. IMF and other institutional creditors will not waive at all. We are not yet as poor as the African countries of the fourth world.

    Now the local masses have to bear the losses in the form of currency devaluation. Up to now, only the creditors have paid the bill; it is now time for the masses to pay their share of the bill.

    • @Tron

      The people have not been paying by being subjected to internal devaluations over the years?


  54. @ David March 22, 2020 2:01 PM

    Of course we have all made great sacrifices. Prosperity today is much lower than in 2008, but with zero growth for 12 years, internal devaluation has not been sufficient. Internal devaluation does not eliminate our main problem, which is that we are far too expensive compared with many other CARICOM territories. An internal devaluation helps a single country in a larger currency area (e.g. USA or EU) much more than a country with its own currency, because the external value and the internal value do not coincide.

    I even represent the opposite thesis here: the Barbados dollar becomes more expensive externally due to internal devaluation. After an exchange, a foreign investor in Barbados today gets much less for a BBD than 12 years ago.

    So we should talk about this difference between internal and external currency value.

  55. @Hal Austin March 22, 2020 7:20 AM “Do you remember Colin Powell at the United Nation talking about Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction.”

    I did not believe the USG’s official position then. It seemed too convenient to me. I believed the UN’s Hans Blitz. The Americans needed to cut the ass of the Saudi’s, since most of the hijackers were Saudi, and Saudi Arabia is the home of radical Islam.

    The Saudis still need to have their ass cut for that.

    But when you have a lot of oil, you can do no wrong.

    If I was bad minded I would suggest that oil should drop to 1 cent per barrel.

  56. I always hated the idea of cruise ships. I never could see why one would pay good money to live in what is essentially a university dorm of 3,000 STRANGERS, while rejoicing in being fed too much food, mediocre entertainment, and losing money by gambling.

    No thanks.

    Not for me.

  57. “Another commercial opportunity missed?”

    As we have been saying all along, this virus needs PROACTIVE LEADERS….with critical thinking skills…you have none in Barbados….only dependents to depend on this and dependent on that and depend on everyone….or they would have been the first to come up with the idea….

    watch them run after the idea now but only AFTER someone else has come up with it, then they will tell you it’s too expensive to implement, but only after paying multimillions to some halfassed consultant to tell them that…

    intellectually bankrupt…as always and as usual.

  58. @Tron. You can’t be taken seriously most of the times. You are a comedic relief at best and an agent provacateur at worst. I have been on BU since 2010 and have never engaged in any DLP/BLP political debate. That’s your forte. Show me where I ever refer to the PM as as dictator/Mugabe.

  59. Forty,

    I apologize!!! Thanks for your correction.

    That one sentence was wrong. It should have read “certain people (piece)” instead of “you”.

    Of course I mean Piece, The legend, but also Mariposa. They repeatedly called Mia a dictator. Now Mariposa almost prays for some kind of medical dictatorship.

    Can you agree with me that there is a certain irony to all this history?

    – always fair and balanced –

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