B-Day in Barbados

Today Prime Minister Mia Mottley will deliver the Budget for 2022 at 3PM. It will be of interest to pundits for several reasons. It comes against rising oil price caused by the Russia Ukraine conflict which threatens to deplete the foreign reserves government has been boasting, and a cashflow pressured by having reallocate funds to cover pandemic expenses.

Of concern to others – including the blogmaster – will be government’s developmental programs to improve quality of life for Barbadians.

Budget Address 2022 (6th Sitting of the First Session of 2022-2027

194 comments

  • NorthernObserver

    @David
    I was hoping you had a ‘local interpretation’ of the term ‘independent trust’. If @HA were still posting, he might propose it was to be funded by an inheritance tax.
    xxxxxx
    We knew something had to be done about public pensions. They still remain largely ‘unfunded’ regardless of what body ‘administers them’. The changes will provide an ‘ease’ on annual costs.
    xxxxxx
    Retroactive taxes are a no-no. I am confused as to exactly what entities they apply to? Is Ansa a financial entity and does it apply to all corporate income or just some?
    xxxxxx
    The big axe is still to fall.

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  • @NO

    As you know many grandiose promises communicated in previous budgets were stillborn. Hopefully in the coming days supported by a vigilant fourth estate more details will be shared.

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  • It looks like the budget speech is over
    Allow me to steal one blogger’s favorite song

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  • NorthernObserver

    The Big Central Banks cannot duck rate increases any longer. Inflation is out of control. We’ll see later today if Powell et al have the kahuna’s for a half percent raise. I doubt it. But they need to get up by 1% and fast.

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  • Grasshopper

    Good one.

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  • @NO

    This is why there is no escalating the decision to remain in the IMF envelope as Avi Persaud shared yesterday?

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  • NorthernObserver

    Unaware of APs comments y’day.

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  • @ Northern
    Talk is cheap, and some of us can get it to flow like a standpipe…. But in the end, most of the output is wasted down the drain.

    So-called ‘Boards’ in the SOEs in Barbados are nothing but a colossal joke. We have a collection of political appointees who are selected in order to be awarded a few dollars per meeting, and to keep the minister fully informed of all that is happening.
    You can easily guess the quality of these ‘Boards’.

    Then, just in case any of them break the mold, and become relatively effective, the minister is moved, or gets upset about being upstaged by the chairman, …or get the PM vex …and the ‘Board’ is replaced in the process …with a new set of neophytes.
    Meanwhile, the employees doing as they like…

    What hold what Board responsible for what SOE what?!!!
    steupsss.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @NO

    Check VOB Brasstacks podcast yesterday. Post budget analysis.

    https://downtobrasstacks.castos.com/episodes/brasstacks-mar-15th-2022

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  • NorthernObserver

    Ok thx David. Will listen when I have time.
    @BT
    We live in hope?
    Though based on the handling of the Senate matter, I cannot state ‘accountability’ is high on this government’s list. They had a straight forward solution, but chose to roll the dice and play politics. And the party supporters fell into line immediately.

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  • A mixed bag of tricks to tackle a health issue placing band aids over health problems
    People buy what they can afford
    Such issues requires more than placing a tax on sweet beverages but govt stepping out front in leading the way with measures that makes it affordable for families to enhance their quality of life
    Hence govt needs to take another look at low wages

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  • Saw mention of the CCJ.
    Don’t waste time and money.
    Buckle up for the next 3.5 to 5 years.

    That is the only game that can play.

    It may happen that the outcome and the merit of the case may actually coincide or it may not.

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  • There’s some hopeful news from across the border for Canadians tired of switching their clocks back and forth twice a year.

    In a unanimous vote on Tuesday, the U.S. Senate passed a bill, called the Sunshine Protection Act, that could make daylight time permanent next year and bring an end to the long-running bi-annual flip.

    Like

  • Just saw the following: DLP to consider Senate seats

    I think some including myself advocated accepting the two seats. My philosophy: You can take cake from a hand and then bite it to hell off. You don’t have to play nice after you get something.

    Heck, you can accept and cuss)bite at the same time

    But some beggars wanna be choosers Dem proud
    Dem slow
    Dem ignorant
    Dem wasting time
    Dem invisible
    Planning to sleep to April.
    Bet you after April, they go back to bed.

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  • Not waiting on the CCJ.

    I only hear w8n to see how Mia gun will de KK thing.

    It gun be a thing of beauty.

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  • gun will = gun wuk

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  • TheOGazertsMarch 16, 2022 4:09 PM

    Just saw the following: DLP to consider Senate seats

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Well well!!

    So the DLP may end up hand in glove with the BLP in defeating the constitution which they would have had a hand in penning.

    Who is going to be the Leader of the Opposition this time?

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  • The youngster In the dlp need to stand up and show off their leadership skill right NOW. Show that they want it and Are not afraid

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  • Once a precedent is set it is hard to reverse
    Today 18 tomorrow 13 watch and see
    This is the first episode since Barbados became a Republic that has exposed govt handling of putting cart before donkey
    Many had pleaded with govt that becoming a Republic govt must put all pieces in order
    Govt rejected the most important piece of the puzzle one that was stamped blue and yellow The Constitution
    Now left alone for a judge to decided which way is up within a Constitution that govt wanted all and sundry to break away from

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  • U still In That ? Stupes
    If the jugde had rykes In ur favor you would still be on it crying down the blå for Trying to go that road and Get ruled against

    Swollow the rough scratch and move on. U aint getting any brownie piints on this one now or within the next give years

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  • Had the Judge ruled against the BLP rendering everything done after 2018 null, void and of no effect, she would have effectively ruled against her appointment!!

    She should have recused herself.

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  • @TheOGazerts March 16, 2022 4:09 PM “…You can take cake from a hand and then bite it to hell off. You don’t have to play nice after you get something.”

    Most sensible statement so far. I give you 10/10.

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  • After the May 2018 revolution, the Constitution only sets non-binding guidelines for our government, which may be overridden at any time. The constitution is, so to speak, a kind of plasticine in the hands of our Supreme Leader, which may be deformed at will.

    Glory to our Supreme Leader! The Supreme Leader gives it and she takes it.

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  • NorthernObserver

    @David
    AP gave a case for remaining in an IMF program past the current one. I do not know for a fact, but most of these low interest/concessionary financing loans are variable rate. So they will move as Libor moves, and it has moved up by >1% in the last year. And I’m guessing it will move up by at least 1.5% in the next 12 month period. The amount of a loan is less relevant than the cost of carrying it. So even though several of the initial IMF loans and those from other bi/multi lateral agencies were based on very low rates, these may be expected to double.
    Barbados will continue to need and benefit from being in an IMF program, IMO.

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  • @NO

    Assuming that is the case you make AP’s point because accessing funds outside the concessionary ‘envelope’ will be more expensive. A challenge for Barbados as you know given our high debt level is that we still need to focus on developmental projects to improve quality of life. Operating in the capital market given our ratings makes concessionary financing attractive.

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  • NorthernObserver

    Wish I had known AP was on, I would have asked him about Clearwater Bay.
    The social vs financial battle continues.
    Public pensions seems it will be a hot spot.
    Happy Green Day

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  • First they were 18 seated
    Yesterday in Parliament 14 showed up
    I guess the Framers of the Constitution understand the minds of the Bajan mentality
    Never on time always having excuses not to show up

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  • More from MPs
    DLP SUGGESTS PARLIAMENTARIANS PAY PANDEMIC TAX AT A HIGHER RATE
    by Sandy Deane
    Parliamentarians should have to give up four per cent of their salaries as some Barbadians prepare to pay the one per cent Pandemic Contribution Levy announced in Monday’s national budget, the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) has challenged.
    “It’s the only right thing to do,” declared the DLP’s third vice president Ryan Walters as he delivered the party’s response to the 2022/2023 Financial and Economic Statement at a virtual forum on Tuesday evening.
    Prime Minister Mia Mottley announced that effective April 1, workers earning more than $6 250 monthly or $75 000 annually will pay the tax at a rate of one per cent of their income, for one year.
    In addition, companies in the telecommunications and commercial banking sectors, the retail sale of petroleum products and general and life insurance, with a net income above $5 million in 2020 and 2021, will also have to pay the levy at 15 per cent of their net income from July.
    The Pandemic Contribution Levy is projected to earn $120 million.
    In the more than hour-long assessment Walters, who described the new tax as “a step backwards”, argued that it was “a definite flaw in how this Government is planning to deal with the current issues of the day”.
    “We could have earned that revenue someplace else. So we have another income tax on these people who have their livelihoods too. You can’t say because a man earns ‘X’ amount of money that you can afford one per cent. Well, let the MPs take out four per cent of their salaries because that is the only right thing to do.
    “If somebody is earning $6 250 a month and can pay one per cent, a senior minister and a Deputy Prime Minister can afford four per cent,“ he said.
    Walters further warned that businesses will pass on the 15 per cent levy to consumers and questioned whether Government had another reason for imposing the tax.
    He said: “Is that a start to move up the corporation tax in anticipation of the global minimum tax rate? And what tha will mean for us who have to patronise these businesses?”
    The DLP official proceeded to chastise Government for other measures, including the cap on the Value Added Tax (VAT) that will see gas being retailed at $3.99 per litre and diesel at $3.32 per litre effective midnight Wednesday.
    He argued that after reaping the sweets from consumers, the Government brought the measure to appease Barbadians, insisting that it should have tackled the excise tax on fuel rather than VAT.
    “So the Government is on a moneymaking spree off of fuel. So that is why the Government will tinker with VAT. If they reduce the excise tax and have it on a sliding scale as prices increase internationally for oil, they can slide the price of the excise tax down commensurate with the increase so that the burden is shared equally across increases and when the price comes down as well,” Walters contended.
    He urged the Mottley administration to be transparent because Barbadians still do not understand why they are paying the most for gas in this region, even with the new measure.
    The DLP official also made a strong case for Government to review the fuel tax which replaced the road tax, as he pointed out that not only motorists but others were also buying fuel at the pumps.
    “So the Government is earning substantial revenue because the net is spread above vehicular revenue, in terms of the road tax, so there is an opportunity to reduce the fuel tax so that everybody gets a fair share and the Government still collects the revenue,” he said.
    The DLP gave a thumbs up to the renewable energy programme but, as Walters suggested, given the substantial investment in the sector Barbadians should be told what reductions in electricity bills to expect.
    “So I am saying to the Government of Barbados that given the aggressive targets of 50 thousand rooftops of solar panels over the next five years, given the significant investment that we are seeing in renewable energy, we should be identifying clear goals to the people of Barbados on where we should be year after year, so that we get to understand what we can understand from the Light and Power Company when we open our bills,”
    Walters contended.
    He also took the Government to task for capping the cost of freight at $7 350 per 20-foot container and $8,000 for a 40-foot container in what the administration said was a move to shield consumers from rising prices of goods.
    The private sector has welcomed the move although it cautioned on Tuesday that prices may not drop as increases on the cost of imported items continues to rise.
    Walters charged that Government has given businesses the power to control the cost of food yet again.
    “They will use their discretion now to determine if they pass on, when they pass on, and how much they pass on. It is as simple as that. We want to know that the prices are coming downward or stabilising, because there is some level of responsibility and integrity at the corporate level that are passing down the savings through the policies of the Government to you, the consumers and the patrons of their businesses.”
    He assured that the DLP would track the movement of prices to ensure that consumers benefit. sandydeane@barbadostoday.bb

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  • About time we had some focus on pension reform.

    Pension reform in focus
    PENSION REFORM worldwide is always a sensitive issue and can even become a contentious one if not properly initiated.
    Any decision, therefore, to revisit public pensions in Barbados must be well thought out and undertaken so that no one is disadvantaged.
    Reform of public sector pensions that moves them from a defined benefits plan to a defined contribution is the logical way to deal with the highly underfunded public sector pensions for state-owned enterprises.
    While annual allocations are in the Estimates for payment from the Consolidated Fund for civil servants, the quantum will rise as salaries increase. The public purse cannot continue to carry this unsustainable financial load.
    There should be a detailed explanation during the ongoing Budget debate to put “meat on the bones” of what Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley disclosed on Monday during her presentation. The announcement that future beneficiaries of the state pension will have to serve 40 instead of 33 and one-third years for full benefits has far-reaching implications.
    The longer stay on the job raises issues of inequality amongst the disciplined services where lawmen and fire officers appear to be at a distinct disadvantage to members of the Barbados Defence Force, who serve a much shorter time.
    The new ceiling to earn full benefits also raises issues about the mental and physical capacity of policemen and firemen to effectively undertake field duties at age 60 plus. Both the Police and Fire Officers Associations should pay special attention to the implications for their conditions of employment. Good governance necessitates meaningful consultation with the public on these money matters that touch lives and livelihoods in very fundamental ways. All trade unions and staff associations should have a say regarding the public pension reform and the general public
    allowed input in the case of the National Insurance Scheme (NIS). The social security scheme is critical to most Barbadians since it touches them in so many vital ways that they should not be mere spectators in its transformation. Certainly, they want it to be insulated from political interference, a problem that has bedevilled many state-owned enterprises. These matters are not the preserve of a select few since there is a connection between private enterprise and the NIS, while Government’s action on pension reform will be watched and perhaps copied by some private enterprises. To appreciate the interlocking relationships, the details should be revealed of how many employed people in Barbados are not in either state or a private company pension plan and will have only the NIS to depend on in retirement.
    The Government should prepare a Green Paper to be followed up by a policy document, as it relates to both public sector pension reform and the overhaul of the NIS, before the Executive’s directives become law.
    Pension reform is without a doubt critical to fixing the country’s fiscal problem. Government, however, should first hear the many informed viewpoints to get the best solution.
    The new ceiling to earn full benefits also raises issues about the mental and physical capacity of policemen . . . to effectively undertake field duties at age
    60 plus.


    Source: Nation

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  • The blogmaster suspects the DLP has zero credibility pontificating on economic matters at this time especially before special meeting next month.

    Liked by 1 person

  • 22% drop in school enrolment
    SCHOOL ENROLMENT HAS dropped by 22 per cent since the 2014-15 period, revealed Minister of Education Kay McConney yesterday.
    Speaking during her presentation yesterday in Parliament, she said overall the enrolment was down even though there had been an increase in some parts of St Philip and Christ Church. However, there were marked decreases in St Lucy and other parishes, she said. “Barbados had less persons enrolling in schools and when we look at what is also happening with our population, we are not reproducing at a fast rate. It says to us that there are less and less persons – certainly when we start calculating when these students will leave school – we are recognising that with 22 per cent less enrolment we have taken a hit in our human capital and in our labour force,” McConney said.
    The minister said education reform therefore had to go far beyond the Common Entrance Examination as there was also under performance in some areas, disengagement by males and lower levels of certification. “We are seeing a significant amount of male attrition, guys, boys dropping out of school and becoming disengaged and there is an absence of standards whether it is for teaching or other areas where we need to address.
    “The reform that has to be done is bigger than just the Common Entrance Exam .. it is looking at a whole range of issues both the opportunities we can now take up based on the trends of the world but equally so those challenges we are facing as a country,” McConney told the House of Assembly. The Member of Parliament for St Philip West said the work Government was undertaking was necessary and important to empowering the country.
    “What is important therefore is whatever we do with reform must optimise those who are within the system and those who are able to engage through the multiple intelligence we seek to recognise.”
    On a more general note McConney said while Barbados was standing in a moment of uncertainty of what was next considering the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ukraine/Russia crisis, grain shortage and oil prices, it should not
    be overtaken by the uncertainty.
    Monday’s Budget she said, spoke to the resilience of not only the economy but the people whose concerns were upfront.
    Those concerns included the high cost of fuel on which there was a temporary lowering of VAT on fuel and the removal of taxes on some personal care items. (AC)

    Source: Nation

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  • A ‘slap in the face’
    Banks concerned about Pandemic Contribution Levy
    by COLVILLE MOUNSEY
    colvillemounsey@nationnews.com
    PRESIDENT OF THE Barbados Bankers Association (BBA), Anthony Clerk, says Government’s implementation of the one-off Pandemic Contribution Levy in the Budget, is a “slap in the face” for banks in Barbados.
    Clerk said the financial sector was not consulted and they were concerned that the “retroactive “levy goes against good tax principles and sets a worrying precedent.
    The BBA president disclosed that while he did not anticipate this levy to be passed on to customers, the association would be meeting next week to discuss the issue and determine whether an appeal was warranted.
    “The banking sector is concerned that this tax was sprung upon us without any kind of discussion or notice. We are particularly concerned about the retroactive nature of the tax. Those accounting years have already been closed, audit reviewed, shareholders advised and dividends paid. To go back into those years to apply a tax now is not the way that a good tax system should work,” said Clerk.
    He argued that of the $105 million that the levy is expected to garner, it is anticipated that 50 per cent of that would be collected from the banks. He said the move is likely to result in an erosion of profit upward of $10 million for each of the banks operating in Barbados.
    “The banks appear to always be an easy target, but we are not the only ones that made some money during the pandemic. So if five million dollars is the threshold, then any company that made profits over that amount should be targeted. We believe that the load or the burden should have been spread across the business sectors and not just the banks, insurance companies, fuel providers and so on.
    “This is going to result in a multimillion-dollar hit on our profits for each one of us, maybe upwards of $10 million in some cases. Of that $105 million that will be earned from this tax, I am sure that well over 50 per cent will come from the banks,” he said.
    Companies
    Outlining the 2022 Financial Statement and Budgetary Proposals on Monday, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley explained that the levy would only be in place for a period up to March 31, 2023 and represented a one-off contribution to the more than $1 billion costs of COVID-19 to Government to keep Barbados – its people and companies operating here – safely. She said it was estimated that this levy would raise approximately $100 million, or ten per cent of the Government’s COVID costs.
    Where a company with a net income above $5 million in 2020 and 2021 is carrying on domestic business in the telecommunications, retail sale of petroleum products by dealers, commercial banking (deposit taking and finance houses, excluding credit unions) and general and life insurance, then such companies shall be subject to a Pandemic Contribution Levy of 15 per cent of the taxable income per the company’s financial statements for
    the fiscal years ended March 2021 and 2022. This levy for each fiscal year is payable in addition to the company’s corporate tax obligation and is not deductible for tax purposes.
    However, Clerk contended that the notion that the financial sector emerged unscathed from the pandemic was simply not true and that a more acceptable proposition would have been to spread the pain across all businesses that registered more than $5 million profit during the period in question.
    “There seems to be this view that the banks were not impacted by the pandemic when in fact they were. For example, in terms of our return on assets, it was one per cent for those years, particularly for the fiscal year 2020. This was a very low return on assets for any business.
    “One has to remember that the banks also supported their customers with a variety of measures throughout the pandemic to ensure that they came out of the pandemic in a good space. In some cases, we are still supporting our customers. It is a bit of a slap in the face of the banks to now come and back tax them for those years. We feel that the tax should have been spread across other industries,” he lamented.
    He added: “We don’t know what the ricochet impact will be, because we have not really thought about that as yet. Interest rates on loans are at the lowest [they have] ever been in Barbados – no one is complaining about that. The banks are playing their part in helping to bring the economy back to life . . . but banks seem to always be the whipping horse whenever Government needs to raise taxes.”


    Source: Nation

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  • A Parliament yesterday made up.of YES members and not one dissenting word of Opposition
    Justice Chase where do.WE go from here
    Apparently you have all the answers
    Await your legal.and logical response
    Oh BTW a footnote 7 members were absent yesterday from the required 21

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  • The budget is nothing other than a renewed declaration of bankruptcy. However, it is not our honourable government that is to blame, but the population. Productivity is far too low, the trade unions are too rebellious. Nothing has changed since 1937. The masses still see the economy as the enemy because they mentally continue to live on the sugarcane plantation.

    The only solution is a population exchange: 80,000 civil servants, welfare recipients and rebellious trade unionists must be deported, in exchange we invite 80,000 rich expats and Africans willing to work.

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  • Meanwhile govt is thinking about having plans ways and manners on snatching up unoccupied houses and vacant land to.build housing stock
    With a one state govt already in action
    That should be easily accomplished
    Lawd have merici

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  • NorthernObserver

    @ac
    A lil secret, one group only needs the support of a majority of seats to do as they please. 16-14 does it, just as well as 30-0. Only difference is opposing forces now must speak beyond the House.
    Your team; Persaud rebuked those 2 on Brass tacks with consummate ease, needs speakers who can avoid the traps set by prior failures when the party ruled. Not easy but necessary.

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  • @ David,

    ” we are recognising that with 22 per cent less enrolment we have taken a hit in our human capital and in our labour force,” McConney said.”

    The void can be filled with Ghanians and some of the Ukranian refugees.

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  • @ NO

    Well I lean towards a democratic process that would rather have one opposing voice than none
    Actually when Atherley was in opposition I rather much enjoyed his rebuttal on issues which would have been kept closed if there was no Opposition
    I suppose your comment was meant to be an excuse taking all things into consideration in Parliament yesterday

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  • NorthernObserver

    Ac
    Didn’t Atherley make comments on the budget as he would if LoO.
    Didn’t former Sen CF do similarly.
    My point was not any excuse for who showed up y’day. The democratic process was the election. It’s done and over.
    My point was members of your team need to UP their game, if the response is to be anything more than a long steupse. They keep biting at hooks, which only unearths the past. They need their own agenda.

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  • good or bad

    The Jamaica-based GraceKennedy Group, one of the Caribbean’s largest conglomerates, is eyeing further expansion into the Barbados market as it seeks to grow the financial services’ money services segments of its operations.

    https://barbadostoday.bb/2022/03/17/conglomerate-eyes-expansion-into-barbados/

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  • 30 -0 is a nullity.

    Can’t meet the constitutional requirement of the existence of an opposition.

    16 – 14 can!!

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  • @NO

    Waited patiently for somebody to make the observation re DLP participation.

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  • @Hants

    There is a reality we cannot hide from, we have an ageing population who all expect to draw down on pension or a long time. How do we increase NIS contributions in a meaningful way? We need to create job. We need individuals and private sector companies to lead that charge.

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  • AC

    Soon u will have Two apposing Voice In the senate. But u like u dobtveven want that

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  • NorthernObserverMarch 17, 2022 3:35 PM

    Ac
    Didn’t Atherley make comments on the budget as he would if LoO.
    Cccc
    Your comments speaks well as to why small islands are referred as turd world countries
    I speak of a democratic process that lends itself to a complete process
    You speak of what is supposed to be sufficient and enough and can do a justifiable job on behalf of people and country
    SMH

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  • NorthernObserver

    No. I spoke to how piss poor the response from the DLP spokespeople was.
    Lol

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  • NorthernObserverMarch 17, 2022 4:46 PM

    No. I spoke to how piss poor the response from the DLP spokespeople was.
    Lol
    Xxxx
    Piss poor Budget lol

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  • Critical Analyzer

    Pension Reform as the world tries to do it now is only kicking the can down the road with the warmed over soup gimmicks of every few years increasing the retirement age, changing pension formulas and raising contributions rates while government borrowing from the pension funds for their projects.

    Our pension reform needs to completely break the mold

    1) For every person currently 50 years or less, change their pension age back tot 65 and have NIS pay an across the board universal basic pension (UBP) calculated based on the cost to cover a one bedroom rental, utilities and food for a single pensioner living alone. Anyone wanting more pension at retirement should seek private pension plans and other investment opportunities during their working years if they desire a higher standard of living.

    2) Persons 51 and older would remain under the current arrangements with any shortfalls for the year covered by an unfunded pensions tax. This pension tax would eventually reduce and go away as the numbers under the old arrangement die out.

    3) Since healthcare is the biggest money problem for pensioners, work on improving the quality and turnaround time for our taxpayer funded healthcare while bending healthcare costs down through novel approaches e.g. a requirement for medical license renewal could be a minimum amount of pro bono work at government medical facilities or referrals for free outpatient surgical procedures.

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  • NorthernObserver

    Then that should make it easy for the opposers to make a sound case?
    If your pal Hal were still posting, surely he could have found a regulation angle.

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  • Clearly, the sweet life of our locals is over at the expense of hard-working businessmen and foreign investors. I recommend to our Supreme Leader to raise the retirement age to 75. Our locals sleep half the day at work anyway, so they might as well sleep 8 years longer there.

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  • Pingback: Pension Reform for Public Officer a Priority (including Members of Parliament a Priority) | Barbados Underground

  • A good contribution was made by Crystal Drake yesterday as she outlined her reasonings on the issue of amendment to change the age to 18 for a Senate seat
    Her response was worth the while

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  • The illogic in the senator’s argument is that she paints all 18yr olds with the same shade of emotional intelligence and intellect. The young man Kothdiwala was taking licks from the likes of Steve Blackett, Ronald Jones, Mara Thompson and others (including some on BU) since his debut on the political platform in 2017 at the age of 13. Five years later Kothdiwala is standing taller and frequently mounted the podium during the last election campaign. In contrast, the same senator was happy to be an opposition and now independent senator, but not a candidate. Worse, a grown man pulled a gun on an opposition member in Parliament. Is it really just age?

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  • Enuff your comment is a typical speech which would come out of the blp camp in an all out effort to support the age change
    Crystal Drakes did not go out on an any attack on the person of Khaleel
    However brought to the attention and focus of the many pitfalls and responsibilities in holding such a position
    A position which comes with demands and challenges from the people with whom they serve
    As she pointed out it is not only being able to deliver campaign speeches every five years but taking on the many task and burdens of a country and a society who are quickened to ask questions and seek quick resolutions from the Senator

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  • Contents from Parluament yesterday including Crystal Drakes response

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  • The argument against Khaleel serving in upper house is political. There is no doubt he operates beyond his years to compare with older incumbents.

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  • The Prime Minister has withdrawn Khaleel as a Senator in waiting.

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  • This is a first with which I have to agree with the PM
    The rationale of having a young person whose life interest goes beyond politics is not only unreasonable but selfish
    No one can take away his intelligence at whatever age
    However his zest and youthfulness for having a fulfilling life should not be tampered or hinder at the altar of political expediency

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  • In a way the end result coming from the would be changed ammendment serves purpose to say that Justice Chase did not have the last word and for that I am estactic

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  • @ David March 19, 2022 5:11 PM
    “The Prime Minister has withdrawn Khaleel as a Senator in waiting.”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    And quite ‘forcibly’ right!

    Otherwise he would have been there to represent the partisan interest of his party and its leader and NOT the interest(s) of the YOUTH of Barbados.

    Let such a Senator be ‘chosen’ by the President and not by the PM nor the LoO, if there was one!

    We are confident that there many other young people aligned to the BLP who are at the age of 21 (or just over that threshold) who can hold the fort and act in KK’s promised seat until the New Constitution for the young Republic of Barbados is fully discussed and agreed upon.

    Why should this urgent need to facilitate the voice of any 18 year-old and to take ‘burning’ Constitutional precedence over the rights of other minority groups who are currently discriminated against and obviously put at a continuing disadvantage in the Bajan society?

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  • Khaleel’s name was obviously withdrawn because independent Senators have signaled they will not support the vote.

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  • @Miller

    It is the right of any PM to select whoever to represent BLP interest. The issue here is the amendment required to lower the qualifying age.

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  • @Enuff March 19, 2022 12:59 PM “Worse, a grown man pulled a gun on an opposition member in Parliament. Is it really just age?”

    No. Not at all. It may actually be gender and testosterone.

    Now that I have thought about it the whole Senate should be composed of women older that 60. Because if we are good enough and smart enough to have raised all current members of Parliament, the business of being a Senator is no more than a piece of cake. And perchance we get stuck and don’t know what to do we can always ask our very smart sons and daughters. I am sure that we can find a few dozen old women to do the job for nothing, after all women already do a whole lotta work for nothing. and we would pack and bring our own lunches/suppers from home. Put some politically partisan caterer entirely out of business.

    If I good enough to raise you, I am certainly good enough to be a Senator.

    Like

  • The issue here was to.lower the age
    Correct
    The issue also drew within itself political posturing one that was hard to ignore
    One that plainly shouted the young man is being used as a political pawn by which PM can pave a political way to hold on to any opportunity tack away for his leadership

    Like

  • Mia got the cart before the horse again. Why announce the young man’s name and make the amendment about him?

    Ah well, Koochie Koo should be strong enough to bear the disappointment and embarrassment.

    Like

  • @ David March 19, 2022 7:22 PM
    (Quote):
    It is the right of any PM to select whoever to represent BLP interest. The issue here is the amendment required to lower the qualifying age.
    (Unquote).
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    How about an amendment, also, to the same Constitution to ensure that there is provision for someone to represent the interests of those who voted against the same BLP in the HoA?

    After all, there are more voters who voted against the BLP than there are people under the voting age of 18.

    It is blindingly obvious that it is the right of the PM to nominate whomsoever she pleases to represent the Government’s interest in the Senate as long as it is part of the 12 as ordained by the supreme Law of the Land.

    But to represent the specific interest(s) of the Youth of Barbados (and not of the prevailing administration) is another matter which should be part of the promised Constitutional Review agenda and which you, Blogmaster, are always recommending bloggers to wait on in order to make their contribution to the process with the expectation for a widely acceptable and satisfactory outcome.

    Why not let the same Bajan youth make some input into the quality of person whom they would prefer to represent them and their interests in Parliament?

    Why not take heed of that Bajan saying:
    ‘If greedy wait, hot will cool.’

    Like

  • @Miller

    We will see how the independents treat with it. The blogmaster is not in favour of recognizing political parties. It is contrary to a member of parliament having the freedom to vote conscience although we are not there yet.

    Like

  • Talk about sophistry. A whole lotta hogwash from the verbosed one.🤣

    Like

  • “After all, there are more voters who voted against the BLP than there are people under the voting age of 18.”

    Mr Miller, a moment of sheer brilliance.

    You have reduced the reason for the inclusion of KK to nothing more than a pig painted with a deep red lipstick and sent out as a lady.

    It should be pointed out that these youths are the sons and daughters of others. Whilst it may sound good to ‘have a voice’ for the youth, their parents would also have their welfare at heart. Tell the politicians to first listen to their own children.

    Here are a few useful cuts that may need senatorial representation
    Senator to speak for the disable
    Senator to speak for the chubby ones
    Senator for the homeless
    Those receiving J-bonds
    Those with vacant lots
    Vaccine recruitment
    Senator for us on BU

    Like

  • The longest serving member of parliament; has held every major portfolio other than minister of tourism; has been a deputy prime minister; has won two elections and politically destroyed the major opposition party ; is now on her second term as Prime Minister.
    And I am supposed to be convinced that she did not know that any offer, such as the one , she made to Mr. Kothdiwala, should not have been made and publicly announced before the it had met all constitutional requirements.
    Every time the PM screws up anything; we are finding a way to excuse her obvious arrogance because nobody can possibly say that she did not know what the hell she was doing.
    Same thing with offering two senate seats to the DLP.
    We need to remind Mottley that all “ big works” regarding the Constitution must “ go through” both Houses of Parliament and not her.

    Like

  • @Donna March 19, 2022 8:17 PM “Ah well, Koochie Koo should be strong enough to bear the disappointment and embarrassment.”

    The young man has not done anything wrong so there is no need for him to be embarrassed.

    This is something which I taught my children, never be sorry/embarrassed/sshamed unless you have done something wrong.

    Perhaps the PM may be embarrassed, but she is a pragmatic woman so I doubt that she is embarrassed. She should move right on doing the WORK that the people of Barbados have elected her to do.

    Like

  • @ Cuhdear Bajan
    “ Perhaps the PM may be embarrassed, but she is a pragmatic woman so I doubt that she is embarrassed. She should move right on doing the WORK that the people of Barbados have elected her to do.“

    I hope that this new standard being set for Mottley is applied to and accepted whenever any body else becomes Prime Minister of our country.
    Here we are cussing public servants; we have cussed teachers; judges; and everybody else. Even here on BU we cuss each other!
    But we want to come here now talking about pragmatism, and who should or should not be embarrassed.
    It’s a terrible double standard. Mottley is not to be excused for consistently putting the cart before the horse. She must be held accountable like all other Prime Ministers before her .
    They were all pragmatic and they were all elected to do a job. Mottley at the end of the day is just another Duopoly politician like all the rest .
    The real irony is that she understands that, but her supporters have apparently elevated her beyond what she actually thinks of herself.
    And that to her must be a major embarrassment.

    Like

  • Budget for ‘fiscal stability’
    By Tony Best Last week’s Budget was described as wideranging and extensive while containing several essential policy steps needed to ensure fiscal stability.
    That summarised the reaction of Winston Cox, a former Governor of Barbados’ Central Bank, to Monday’s presentation of the 2022 budgetary proposals by Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Mia Amor Mottley.
    He told the Sunday Sun that global issues which included Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine; escalating inflation in many of Barbados’ trading partners in North America and Europe; the troubles confronting the international supply chain and the continuing fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic were outside of Barbados’ control, although they were important to its economic success.
    “We don’t have the military or financial capability to address those issues. There is very little that Barbados can do in the face of the global spike in [commodity prices] and in a situation that was exacerbated by Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine,” Cox said.
    Little Barbados can do
    “I think the Budget alludes to that when the (Government) spoke of the importance of Russia and the Ukraine to the supply of wheat and grains to Europe and lots of African countries. We know that the situation is important to the supply of oil and gas to Western Europe and there is little Barbados can do to solve it. Capping the value added tax on petroleum products, capping the freight costs to calculate customs duties and the computation of CIF (cost, insurance and freight) are small things and therefore are not going to make a big impact on the rate of inflation in Barbados.
    “But at least the Government can say: ‘We are doing something” to make life easier and more manageable for Barbadians’, added Cox.
    “I think the commitment to the reform of state enterprises is something that should be applauded and I certainly hope that the administration carries through with this and tries to improve the governance model and the financial management practices of many of the state enterprises. Some of them are always going to be dependent on direct contributions from the Government and they are not profit-maximising institutions. In such cases, they should be loss-minimising institutions.”
    Cox said he had hoped that the governance of statutory corporations “would have been addressed” long ago. Now, “it was an important component of reform”.
    He supports training programmes for board members of statutory corporations to help them carry out their duties effectively. Their roles change regularly and Barbadians shouldn’t assume that people know what their functions were.
    “You have to make room for that kind of evolution.”
    Cox said the presentation of the Budget to Parliament was an important move because of the necessity for Government to outline “once a year, what its policies and programmes were going to be. It is always helpful that an informed citizenry knows what the plans are” and what to expect.
    “It is a good bit of discipline that you have a budget presentation annually. It is not simply enough to present it to Parliament but to the country,” he said.
    Turning to the essential National Insurance Scheme and Government’s plans to reform it, Cox labeled reforms an “important
    part of the Budget.” The plan, he insisted was a “commitment” to change the “nature of the NIS, bringing it up from being a part of the core public service into making it into an independent body with a very important function, namely pension administration.
    Could limit potential
    “The way in which it is to be carried out would have a substantial impact on our financial and financial system,” Cox said. “That’s crucial. I hope that it is a successful intervention.”
    The former bank governor also focused on a “demographic problem,” specifically, a “shrinking of the nation’s population”, which he said could limit potential for economic growth.
    He highlighted some “dark forces” which he said were either on the horizon or were already facts of economic life. One, was the impact of the war in Eastern Europe which was being felt through high inflation.
    Another was the COVID-19 pandemic.
    Cox struck a note of caution on the issue of retroactive taxation that could help bring in more than $100 million in taxes to the Government. He warned that “retroactive taxation” was often “frowned upon”.
    There were other issues in the Budget that held his attention.
    One involved the constitutional commission to be headed by former High Court Judge Christopher Blackman and the other dealt with parliamentary reform. The latter is to be chaired by Sir Richard Cheltenham, a former President of the Senate.
    “The announcement about the commissions suggest that in the transition from a monarchy to a republic we may have put the cart before the horse,” he said. “They are things that should have been done before the transition occurred. They could have been outlined in the lead-up to becoming a republic.”
    Considering the current global and regional picture, Cox credited the Government with making a “heroic” effort to manage the economy effectively.


    Source: Nation

    Like

  • BAS WORRY
    Paul: Solar farms taking up prime agricultural land
    By Maria Bradshaw mariabradsaw@nationnews.com
    Local agricultural expert James Paul has expressed concern about prime agricultural lands being transformed into solar farms.
    The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Barbados Agricultural Society (BAS) prefers a system of agrivoltaics where panels can be placed off the ground or on roof tops.
    With Barbados pushing for the transition of renewable energy to replace fossil fuels by 2030, Paul wants a strategy implemented that would preserve the land.
    “We have already expressed concern over the way that sometimes the approvals are happening. First of all, we need to have some type of strategy in terms of moving ahead with this solar energy. One of the things that countries acknowledge is that the panels need to go on roof tops wherever there is available space. There is no sense putting them on good farmland that basically should be used for the production of crops.”
    He pointed out that there were several buildings available where rooftop panels could be placed.
    “For instance, you have places such as BIDC that have buildings there sitting down that have a lot of roof space that could be utilised to put photovoltaic cells on and there are other buildings that are going up that could be used. So why then are we compromising our good agricultural land to put panels on when you have roof space that is not being utilised for the purpose of generating electricity?
    “The other point is that in other cases when you have agricultural property only a certain amount of land you can put panels on. If you have ten acres you can’t take the whole ten acres and sheet it with panels. In England they have difficulties with these things because you are alienating good agricultural land which you can use to grow crops on.”
    He noted that in several countries the strategy was to marry solar energy and agriculture.
    “In other words, providing [an] additional income stream for farmers. Certainly, we have to be careful of those persons who are rushing in, buying agricultural land and they have absolutely no interest in agriculture and they are bringing these proposals to the Town & Country Planning [Department] to put solar farms on and that would compromise our agriculture.
    However, the executives of two companies which have applied to Government for permission to operate solar photovoltaic farms said they were only utilising small acres for the projects leaving the majority of agricultural land intact for that use.
    Last week Sagicor Life & Barbados Farms Ltd advised the public through a number of newspaper advertisements that it had applied for permission to build solar photovoltaic projects on eight of its farms, namely Applewhaites Plantation, Bulkeley, Jordans Plantation, Stephney Plantation and Windsor Plantation, St George; Orange Hill Plantation St Peter; Plum Tree Plantation, St James; and Strong Hope Plantation, St Thomas.
    However, Paul stated that “Sagicor needs to ensure they exercise some corporate responsibility even when it come to that. We should not profit on our legacy in the way
    in which it is being suggested. We forget that these same lands that we are talking about compromising we need them for our food production,” he charged.
    But Edward Clarke, Director of Barbados Farms, said the acres which they would be seeking to utilise for solar farms were minimal to their agricultural usage.
    “There would be some land taken out of agriculture, not all. It would be a minimal amount compared to what we own. Out of about 4 000 acres of land and we have about 2 000 acres in agricultural production right now, these [solar projects] add up to a couple hundred acres – it is insignificant to the overall agricultural production. It is about five per cent of [our] lands.”
    Pointing out that Barbados Farms had been a “significant contributor to the agricultural sector in Barbados for many years at significant cost to Sagicor and the shareholders of Barbados Farms”, Clarke said they were hoping that the solar project adds more sustainability.
    “We are extremely hopeful and optimistic that the Government would allow the agriculture sector to start to reap some of the benefits from the energy sector. We are hopeful that this would allow us to stay in operation and to improve the food security while keeping sugar in operation and allow Barbados Farms to sustain itself because otherwise, it would not be sustainable if we don’t do something in the very near future.”
    He revealed that the multimilliondollar project would be majority owned by a Barbadian entity.

    Source: Nation

    Like

  • Money talks bull sh..it walks
    Govt is strapped for cash so govt would become a prostitute for alland sundry who rush forward with cash which generates fast revenue rather than secure most remaining land space for Food
    Lest we forget this govt while in opposition said they had all and every plan to do what is best for people and country
    The present evidence now suggest that govt plays economic gimmicks with the minds of the people undergirded with smoke and mirror plans
    One would have thought that COVID would be a long lesson learned provoking govt to do what is right and proper on behalf of country and not big time pocket book spenders looking out for themselves

    Like

  • Where would govt find the land to build ten thousand houses in five years at a total of.two thousand houses per year
    Where would govt find the land for the Agriculture of Cannabis sufficient and enough to give a return of financial.cost
    Where would govt find land to improve and expand road for transportation mobility
    Where would govt find land for all these problems which would worsen as upward mobility and improvement for a better society becomes due and which are long overdue

    Like

  • Furthering and of uttermost importance
    Where would govt find land for the protection of the environment land which serves purpose as a safe and secure sight for land fills within the proper use for the collection of items which cannot be dispose of in a,manner which cannot negatively affect the environment
    Within all the long talk in the Budget no mention was made about govt appropriating measures that would impact the environment in positive manner
    Barbados is still using long outdated landfills which have all but outlived their usefulness
    Along with having manufacturing plants that bellows dust and toxins in the air that are affecting people’s health
    Nothing of that kind seems to matter or is giving first preference.
    However we have a PM taking bold stands in Parliament on measures that can wait within time while placing cart before the horse 🐎

    Like

  • William,

    The cart before the horse trend is indeed concerning.

    Like

  • But isn’t that transparency? The PM said who she intended to appoint. No one needed to guess. Just like we all knew Marston Gibson was the one to benefit from Adriel Brathwaite’s constitutional amendment. At least the amendment also would have allowed the President or Opposition to appoint an 18, 19 or 20yr old. It seems like Khaleel is the issue not his age. I laughed at Senator Boyce using his 18yr old self to justify why 18 is too young. But an 18yr old Khaleel and Boyce at 18 is like chalk and cheese. No one would have considered Boyce for a senate pick when he was 18! Mind you Canada elected Pierre-Luc Dusseault to the House of Commons at 19.

    Like

  • Nope. It made the issue cloudy. Was the amendment to provide a voice for the youth or a voice for Koochie Koo and the future of the BLP? The tale she told was a problem.

    An amendment to serve the youth is one thing. An amendment to serve Koochie and the BLP is another.

    Once the amendment is accepted by both houses on principle, then the PM could appoint whomsever she liked.

    Like

  • If Mia cannot see these things, is there NO-ONE in her inner circle who can see them and speak up?

    Or does she not listen to anyone?

    Too many of these obvious blunders, man!

    Correction: WHOMSOEVER.

    Like

  • Did not OSA say the blp under Mia had lost its way
    Well the proof is in the eating as the chickens one by one come home to roost
    Just wait all would see the final result from the off shooting of policies that are bent towards the weight of those who holds the public purse hostage

    Like

  • William Skinner

    @ Enuff
    I honestly don’t think that 28 years old is too young for either chamber. The real revolutionary action would have been to seek to have the requirement reduced to sixteen.
    I read in yesterday’s paper where a six year old has sold her first paintings as an artist.
    We need to start looking at ability and not age. Any sixteen year old could be and should be able to run for the house or to be put in the Senate.

    Like

  • William Skinner

    I meant : I honestly don’t think that 18 is too young; not 28.

    Like

  • William Skinner

    @ Donna
    You are one of the very few who have expressed concerns about Mia’s rushing to do things and then having to blame others back pedal. Quite frankly you were perhaps the first one on BU.
    Even with this self inflected wound she can’t say : I should have waited before throwing the gentleman into this predicament. She is saying that unfortunately we as a country are not prepared to give youth a chance. That’s a bold face lie. How old is Mia ; and how long has she been in Parliament.
    We have been producing extremely young and gifted citizens for years. We have had company presidents of major companies before they were near forty years old; check the ages of several Head teachers.
    Mia is claiming that appointing young people is “ beyond our imagination”. She is attempting to be blameless. Her failed AG should have told her: Madam Prime Minister, let us get through the constitutional requirement before we go public with this………,,,..but he perhaps didn’t know any better.
    She could never pull such a stunt with Henry Forde or David Simmons ( Sirs).

    Like

  • Donna
    Both! Isn’t Khaleel 18yrs old with views? There isn’t one youth view. All yuh forgetting it is a political party appointing him to represent their agenda from his perspective? It is not a 4-H club. Furthermore, I repeat the change would not have precluded the President and or Opposition from appointing someone 18yrs or older. So alternative perspectives from other youths could be ventilated too. Anyhow I am not gonna waste time arguing about this. If we are going to zero in on Khaleel being identified and made known, then it appears we have a problem with the individual.

    Like

  • The opposition and many commentators on BU are simply racists. They hate KK because he does not conform to black racial ideals. Full stop.

    Like

  • Not naming KK could be the prelude to a race war in Barbados. It has now become obvious to all foreign investors, expats and tourists that Barbados is unfortunately a racist apartheid state where the black majority discriminates against the hard working minorities.

    Those black senators who speak out against KK in their racial hatred are the same loafers who have lived at the expense of businessmen since 1966. They howl about racism in the USA, but claim for themselves the privilege of being fanatical racists.

    Like

  • Minorities in Barbados like KK are apparently discriminated against almost as much as the Jews were in the Third Reich.

    Like

  • @Tron
    I have enjoyed your many comments even though I find most of them shocking.
    First there is the gut punch and I find the ‘humor’ in your post.
    However, I disagree with the introduction of race.
    Perhaps, it is because on male blogger get kis kinky knickers Knotted whenever I mention KK.

    Like

  • reality check

    Like

  • Price cuts ‘unlikely’
    BCCI president: Freight cost cap will have little impact
    by COLVILLE MOUNSEY
    colvillemounsey@nationnews.com
    BARBADIANS ARE BEING CAUTIONED to temper expectations for a cut in the price of goods, following Government’s cap on the cost of freight used for calculating customs duties.
    President of the Barbados Chamber of Commerce & Industry (BCCI), Anthony Branker, told the MIDWEEK NATION that most of the business sector was unlikely to benefit from the 12-month measure, and therefore there will be no savings to pass on to consumers.
    In fact, he warned that the cap will do little to stem the anticipated increase in the cost of goods resulting from the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine.
    Branker explained that most importers procure their goods from North America, Central America or within CARICOM and they do not meet the threshold of US$7 350 per 20-foot container and US$8 000 per 40-foot container. He added that due to the global rise in oil prices, the first cost of goods is expected to increase, cancelling out any saving that could be achieved by the cap on freight outlined in last week’s Budget.
    “The reasons why prices will not drop considerably, if at all, is because the first cost of many items across varying sectors are increasing as a result of increases in oil prices. Any savings that could have resulted from the reduction of freight cost are now eroded by the increased first cost of the goods,” he said.
    “Secondly, the majority of source points from which we import products into Barbados, being CARICOM, being US, being Canada, Central America and some parts of the UK (United Kingdom), importers in Barbados generally don’t pay over US$8 000 for a container. So therefore, the capping of the freight at those levels will not redound to any change in the pricing.
    “Thirdly, the products imported from US ports and even in the Caribbean, we have already been seeing increases in bunker fuel
    cost and freight increases for these containers. Despite these increases, we are still not getting to the US$8 000 cap, so more than likely those increases will result in some increase in price.”
    Branker said only goods coming from Asia met the freight cost threshold for the cap, which could see benefits to customers, but the likelihood of Barbadians paying less for their groceries was wishful thinking.
    “The average Barbadian will not see any decrease in prices for basic groceries. The products coming out of Asia and those Far Eastern areas are the containers that cost over US$8 000 in freight. So things like household items, tuna and some basic items may benefit. However, the vast majority of our products come from CARICOM, US, Canada and Central America, and therefore there would be no change in prices. There is likely to be an increase rather than a decrease . . . ,” he said.
    The BCCI president said one measure which could bring the cost of goods down was to temporarily remove the cost of freight from the calculations of import duty. He also suggested importers resort to buying generic brands so the first cost of products can be cheaper.
    “I can understand that Government may not want to lose monies on duties, but at the same time if there is a need to bring pricing down with the escalating oil prices, something as drastic as that may have to happen. In the meantime, Barbadians have to manage their expectation as to what the capping of the freight will mean for the average consumers.”

    Source: Nation

    Like

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