A Sober Mid Year Review of the Barbados Economy Required

The following is an update from a BU correspondent with a few edits applied by the blogmaster. It is important we maintain focus on the management of the economy. It is encouraging to observe in recent days the Nation newspaper has been guided to also focus on the economy and related news as Barbadians immerse themselves in matters related to celebrating Christmas. The challenges facing the country will be waiting patiently for a return to more sober ways.
The Estimates for 2022/2023 confirm the common practice in recent decades of successive governments constrained to fund ugly deficits to support our consumption behaviour, graft, financial incompetence/mismanagement exposed in annual Auditor General Reports and Central Bank Reports. The estimates for 2022/2023 read a shortfall of $173. million dollars.
David, Blogmaster

On the 16 December 2022 in parliament Minister in the Ministry of Finance, Ryan Straughn delivered the mid-year review of Barbados’ fiscal performance from March to September, as is required by the Financial Management Act passed in 2019. The review consists of important information on spending, interest payments on debt and current debt levels. Here is a video of what the Minister had to say at about 6 minutes in https://youtu.be/icgJs7wFN0I and the document laid in parliament with the title MINISTERIAL STATEMENT HONOURABLE RYAN STRAUGHN M.P. MINISTER IN THE MINISTRY OF FINANCE.

The good news is that Barbados’s debt to GDP ratio is on a downward trend, this is after it increased during the pandemic, The Debt to GDP ratio now stands at 126 % which is below the 178% in 2018.

See Related blog

Policy Performance and Outlook (Part 2)

This is consistent with what some had predicted with the economy producing higher growth this year which is materialising due to significantly higher tourism arrivals with growth projected to be at around 10% this year.

Of concern to many in the mid-year review is that the government will run a fiscal surplus of 2% which is larger that the original 1% target. This higher fiscal surplus is due to larger than expected corporate tax intake and transaction tax (e.g. VAT ) intake due to higher inflation and the fact that government spending this year so far is actually 9% lower than originally projected.

The current global environment remains challenging for developing countries due to rising global interest rates and a strong US dollar which put a strain on debt servicing costs and causes Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) outflows since bond investors can now get higher interest returns in developed countries with less risk. This environment can be seen in challenges faced by Sri Lanka, Ghana and Pakistan.

An overall assessment of the Mottley administration’s handling of the economy is – so far so good.The biggest area of concern however is the fall in the Government’s capital works programme. In the previous fiscal year it was felt that the administration did well to get it to about 4 percent of GDP. which was the highest since the mid 2000s, but it has fallen again in this fiscal year to only $55 million thus far. Whatever bottlenecks the administration needs to remove to get it going again it needs to do so, given that public capital investment is tied to competitiveness in many ways.

Related economic activity

In related developments, a UK media report about Scottlands’s trade mission to Barbados and the work that is being done between companies from both countries, and developments with respect to the relationship between Barbados and Rwanda and also Kenya and the number of Barbadian entrepreneurs that are now going on these missions. This is where the rubber meets the road on economic diversification, Barbadians should be glad to see that we are now finally moving beyond talk and into action. Now that trade policy seems to be improving, the next step is to deal with Education Reform at home.

101 thoughts on “A Sober Mid Year Review of the Barbados Economy Required

  1. Mia’s Global reach is commendable and is a strong foundation to build the legacy for a new Republic

    • $1.5b bill for financial year
      Debt $173m more than projected in Estimates
      by SHAWN CUMBERBATCH shawncumberbatch@nationnews.com

      GOVERNMENT WILL HAVE to fork out $1.15 billion to pay creditors in this financial year alone.
      It means that by the end of March, debt payments are likely to be $173.1 million more than what Parliament approved in the Estimates for 2022/2023.
      This information is detailed in the midyear Budget review for the period April to September 2022, which was laid in the House of Assembly on December 16.
      The 33-page report, produced by the Ministry of Finance, Economic Affairs and Investment, also outlined that with Government facing a $379 million budget deficit in the last half of its current financial year, and debt payments totalling $500 million in that time, “significant financing is needed to meet the gap and is expected to be met by domestic and external funding”.
      The authorities also said that an estimated $163 million would have to be transferred to the Barbados Revenue Authority (BRA) for it to pay arrears to taxpayers in the same period.
      Higher debt
      Minister in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs Ryan Straughn told Parliament in his recent Ministerial Statement that servicing debt cost Government $587.2 million between April and September, which was higher than the $458.3 million in the Approved Estimates for that period.
      He attributed the higher payments to creditors mainly to “the prepayment of Series E bonds of approximately $145.8 million as well as redemptions of Savings Bonds of approximately $3.1 million”.
      The overall increase in debt expenditure for the full financial year relates primarily to “higher interest costs and the prepayment of Series E Bonds executed as part of the country’s first debt for nature swap in September”.
      In the cash flow section of the mid-year budget review document, the Ministry of Finance said Government was able to meet all of its financial obligations due to the availability
      of various financing options.
      “While the Government realised an overall surplus of $114 million in the first half of the fiscal year, the cost of debt service ($583.1 million) and arrears repayments ($20.9 million) resulted in the utilisation of funding acquired from the IMF (International Monetary Fund) under the Extended Arrangement ($46 million) as well as proceeds from the issuance of treasury notes and BOSS (Barbados Optional Savings Scheme) bonds ($134 million) to meet the financing gap,” the ministry explained.
      “Over the second half of the fiscal year, revenues totalling $1.7 billion are expected to be collected, while $2 billion is forecast to be spent.”
      Faced with an estimated $379 million deficit between September and March 31, Government hopes to close the gap partly by raising $200 million from BOSS Plus bonds on the domestic market. The Central Bank previously reported an initial slow take-up of these securities by investors.
      It is predicted, however,
      that the bulk of the deficit funding will come from overseas.
      “Externally-sourced financing comprises of inflows related to project funds anticipated for the latter half of financial year 2022/23 and includes $36 million from CAF [Development Bank of Latin America] and $30 million from [the] European Investment Bank,” the mid-year review stated.
      “Expected receipts from policy loans currently total $436 million of which $36 million relates to [IMF] Extended Fund Facility disbursements, $200 million is anticipated from Inter-American Development Bank and the remaining $200 million is expected to be disbursed by the World Bank.”
      Government is also hoping that the $3.2 billion in total revenue it expects to collect during the full 2022/2023 financial year will not be negatively
      affected by monies due from the state-owned Barbados National Oil Company Limited (BNOC).
      BNOC is $63 million in arrears to Government “for various taxes accumulated”.
      The Ministry of Finance said the Mia Mottley administration’s revenue forecast “assumes $50 million of the amount due will be paid between October and March of financial year 2022/2023.
      “In the event the BNOC is unable to fulfil these payments, the revenue outturn would be negatively impacted,” it said.
      The mid-year budget review also said that any additional funds beyond the $163 million budgeted for the BRA to pay refunds “would cause a further decline in revenue”.

      Source: Nation

    • Afreximbank Board approves $1.5 billion funding for Caribbean countries

      Article by Sandy Deane
      Published on
      December 26, 2022

      The Board of Directors of African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has approved US$1.5 billion funding to enable member states of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) that have ratified the Partnership Agreement with Afreximbank to tap into the Bank’s various financial instruments.
      This Board approval follows the accession of nine CARICOM member countries to the Afreximbank Partnership Agreement which was launched on 1 September 2022, at the first Africa-Caribbean Trade and Investment Forum (ACTIF) held in Bridgetown, Barbados.
      Recently ratified by Barbados and in the process of being ratified by the other eight signatories, the treaty remains open for accession to the six CARICOM members that have yet to sign.
      Upon accession to the agreement, CARICOM member countries become Participating States in Afreximbank, conferring on the Bank the same privileges and immunities that it enjoys in the African Participating States that acceded to its Establishment Agreement. It unlocks the commencement of Afreximbank’s operations in the Caribbean.
      The Partnership Agreement between Afreximbank and the constituent countries of CARICOM consolidates the Bank’s efforts to promote and develop South-South trade and specifically trade between Africa and the Caribbean in line with its Diaspora Strategy.
      Afreximbank defines intra-African trade as the flow of goods and services between or among African countries as well as the flow of goods and services between Africa and Africans in the Diaspora.
      The US$1.5 billion financing approved by the Board of Directors of Afreximbank enables CARICOM countries to access the Bank’s financing instruments through financing facilities that support various identified economic sectors including tourism, healthcare, renewable energy, shipping, mining, agriculture and agribusiness, air links, and aquaculture.
      Afreximbank will also work to support local financial institutions to source finance for SMEs. These key sectors were identified following several Afreximbank-led business development and trade and investment promotion missions to the Caribbean

      As part of its twinning initiatives, and investment promotion activities, Afreximbank is also working to introduce
      CARICOM investors and financial institutions to opportunities in all sectors across Africa, while exposing African investors to investment opportunities in key sectors identified in CARICOM countries.
      Professor Benedict Oramah, President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Afreximbank.

      Professor Benedict Oramah, President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Afreximbank, commented: “This approval by our Board of Directors of US$1.5 billion in funding is another giant step in the historic reconnection we are successfully forging
      between Africa and the Caribbean. Afreximbank is now all set to operate in the CARICOM member countries which we are pleased to welcome as Participating States in the Bank. We look forward to having all CARICOM members on board to maintain the extraordinary momentum we have been building since we met at the Africa-Caribbean Trade and Investment Forum in September 2022, and to respond together, through trade, to the development needs of the people of both our regions.”

      Source: Barbados Today

  2. ” Debt service for period $587M as compared to $458m approved in estimates”. Also bear in mind this was AFTER the debt restructuring had occured.

  3. “$587M as compared to $458m”

    don’t worry
    Poor is poor
    it’s all the same
    it’s just numbers
    just like 3396815 which unlocks your soul language

  4. In his year end address, His Highness the Most Excellent President and Prime Minister Frederic Griffoot KC OR of Ruritania heaped praise on the IMF for their new fund, The Economic Entitlement Fund (TEEF).
    “Finally, international bodies are appreciating those nations with Debt to GDP in excess of 150%” PM Griffoot stated. “It wasn’t easy getting here. It has been a struggle. And TEEF recognizes this”
    While he congratulated Ruritanians on their continued consumptive habits, he stated “the World is finally realizing we are entitled to keep spending. We support them”
    Reeling from tax hikes in the last budget, Griffoot continued his approval. “We must keep tossing debt repayment morsels to our lenders, but they know we are entitled”. Ruritania he stated “continues to punch above it’s weight.” The island Republic invisible on most world maps, is home to the Uber rich, who own most of the island’s property.
    Struggling with an international perception of corruption, PM Griffoot assured Ruritanians they were no more corrupt that anywhere else. Hence they were entitled to be corrupt, merely earning what they deserved, for centuries of hardship inflicted by others.
    While the dormant volcano Gekko, hasn’t erupted in over a century, Ruritanians were reminded of the dreadful damage which could occur.
    The annual address ended with the reminder, “Live well, enjoy today, for tomorrow is uncertain. We have a right to exist, and exist well. We are Ruritanians.”

  5. Our honourable government has already initiated the most important measure for economic recovery: The lifting of almost all Corona restrictions. Now all that remains is for the masks to come off at the hospital, on the buses and in the old people’s homes to naturally reduce the numbers of the welfare state’s boarders.

    The Corona crisis has impressively revealed how little we can trust the quacks in their white coats, they were even recently convicted for the death of a prominent personality. Time for our Attorney General to finally put the BAMP bureaucrats, these apologists of an insane, endless lockdown, permanently in protective custody at Harrison´s Point.

  6. @Dame
    You mean PUDRYR, as in Piece Uh De Rock Yeah Right?
    The thriving and mythical Republic of Ruritania, is usually from one blogger, moi.

  7. Solvency in Capitalism
    requires Movement
    like a Shark
    if it stops it dies
    and Growth
    like a Big Ganja Tree
    Barbados’ Economic Debt Recovery
    appears difficult
    but it is moving
    at a
    Slow Velocity

  8. “What do you mean, “What are we going to do?”
    “We” means the Barbados Underground

    Aint got no green
    Can’t afford no dreams
    And the only thing gettin’ cheaper
    Is me it seems
    Look out my window
    Still the same

    Same bunch of no count niggas being don’t count niggas
    Nothin’ changed
    What we talkin’ ’bout
    We talking ’bout

    Poor People (bckup vocal)
    Talkin’ bout poor people
    Poor People
    Talkin’ bout poor people

  9. The Kriya will clear your language. Even if you mumble words, if you practice this for a long time, you will be clearly heard by another person. It is called Gupt Gian Shakti, the secret power of the knowledge. If you perfect this, you need not speak. You can just send a mental thought, and the other person will totally know about it.

    Instructions on how to practice the Aad Naad Kriya:

    Posture: Sit in easy pose with a straight spine in Easy Pose. Relax the arms down with the elbows bent. The forearms are pulled up and in toward the chest until the hands are positioned in front of the chest between the solar plexus and the heart. Sit with the legs crossed or in a chair with the weight of both feet equally distributed.

    Mudra: Interlock the fingers with the right index finger on top of the left index finger. The heels of the hands are joined and the thumbs are together and stretched back so that they point straight up.

    Breath: Deeply inhale. Completely exhale as the mantra is chanted. Chant the entire mantra as only one breath is completely exhaled.

    Eyes: Closed.

    Mantra: Chant the following mantra as the breath is completely exhaled

    Ra Ra Ra Ra
    Ma Ma Ma Ma
    Sa Sa Sa Sat
    Hari Har Hari Har


    Ra – Sun Energy, Positive, Generating Force
    Ma – Moon Energy, Receptive Force
    Sa – Impersonal Infinity
    Sat – Truth
    Hari / Har – Creative Infinity

    Time: Continue for 11 minutes

    To End: end the kriya with a deep inhale, suspend the breath at least 15 seconds or as long as you feel comfortable. Exhale through the mouth. Repeat 3 times. When practicing this meditation at home, you can extend the time to 31 or 62 minutes, or longer. When finished sit quietly or lie down on your back. Listen to and surrender to the silence within. It may speak to you, now or later. Make yourself available with no expectations.

  10. @ David

    This is our reality in a nutshell without all the fluff and political dressing.

    We were at a point 2 years ago where we were insolvent and could not service our debt, so we had a debt restructuring. This crippled the NIS and ” mash up”many other investors, while taking a large sum of money out the system by way of slashing interest rates to all involved.

    This was to be our salvation and answer to the problem. Well we back where we were then with our debt back up in de air. Our problem however was never addressed.

    WE CONTINUE TO SPEND MORE THAN WE EARN AND BORROW TO FINANCE THE DIFFERENCE. They are only 2 real solutions to this. 1 is spend less and 2 is earn more. Dem ain’t no golden number 3. So do we spend less and improve our collection agencies like BRA and Customs, or do we brace for restructuring 2.0 down the road?

    • @John A

      There is a more stark picture to be painted.

      This government was handed an economy operating with a junk status rating. The incumbent to remediate elected to go SD. Along came unpredictable events that are always the bane of SIDs (open small island economies). The major party in waiting has been promising and advising increases in public sector wages and related expenditure driven solutions.

      In sum: we have the two major parties that alternate who have been unable to spark a new (create an enabling environment) economy to be able to satisfactorily compete. We have discussed many times our economy is public sector driven, an indictment on our mainly retail/distributive private sector. The hospitality sector although it generates the bulk of foreign exchange is parasitic.

      Then we have a population addicted to conspicuous consumption. The result is that we operate with champagne taste with mauby pockets.

      Last but not the last, we have a majority of the population oblivious to the current state of our predicament.

      What are we to do in the continuing circumstances?

  11. @ David

    Government has to deal with their backyard first. The spending and poor collection of amounts owed to the state must be addressed urgently. Then they have to deal with the poorly functioning goverment entities, thereby addressing the large amounts of transfers and subsidies they need from central government yearly to keep their doors open.

    I can not say in this parties 2 terms that I have seen any real action on dealing with any of the above to date, although a great deal of lip service has been offered on the matter that action will be taken.

    • @John A

      All will disagree the wastage, squandering of public funds must be aggressively addressed, including unfunded pensions. This is what the blogmaster refers to as a maintenance issue. It does not address the endemic/structural problem in the economy AND underlying dysfunctional behaviour citizens are addicted.

      What are we the citizens going to do? We have no choice to sit and take it?

  12. All loans, now come with a severe weather clause, I think they must also incorporate a rapid interest rise clause.
    A ‘debt trap’, is where a borrower must take on new loans simply to repay existing ones.
    However, the accompanying ‘Rate trap’ is when new loan money is 3X+ more costly than existing loans. And this doesn’t include Credit Rating changes.
    While 2022 saw many central bank rates rise from 4%, these rate increases will continue, albeit at a slower pace in 2023. They will top 5% for much of ’23.
    Borrowers (Nations) who jumped on ‘low rate loans’, will need a concession(s). More time, rate extension, or ????, or they will face unmanageable loan service costs. And defaults will abound.
    No Nation wishes to concede a standard of living decrease, whether it was funded largely by Debt or not.

    • “No Nation wishes to concede a standard of living decrease, whether it was funded largely by Debt or not.”

      Your last observation is interesting and merits some unpacking. Who is defined as ‘Nation’? Do you mean WE the collective? The government we elected? Where is this thought process anchored? Who is responsible for disrupting this trend of thinking if we are to avoid the worse?

    • Today we heard Senior Minister of Projects Duguid announcing to all with ears that the sod is about to be turned for three hotels, Hyatt, Indigo, and one other.


  13. Barbados Today
    ‘Uncertain outlook’


    by Emmanuel Joseph

    The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has classified Barbados’ ongoing economic recovery as weak and the outlook as uncertain, as it identified a potential decline in the leading industry, tourism, and the possibility of difficulties accessing new and affordable financing.

    The assessment was provided in the Bank’s new report, Headwinds Facing the Post- Pandemic Recovery, released on Tuesday, which analysed ongoing external economic shocks on Caribbean economies.

    “Even though authorities remain committed to fiscal prudence and to the reform agenda, public debt levels are elevated (135.4 per cent of GDP in FY 2021/2022) and high fiscal surpluses in the short and medium-term required to achieve fiscal sustainability,” stated the report which is part of the IDB’s Caribbean Economics Quarterly series.

    “In addition, the ongoing economic recovery is still weak and will depend on the evolution of global tourism trends and the capacity of Barbados to regain its market share.”

    According to the IDB, high inflation in source markets might restrict demand for travel and there could be a substitution toward cheaper destinations. Moreover, the recent depreciation of the pound sterling against the US dollar could discourage UK visitors, the largest share of the island’s tourism arrivals.

    “Distance from source markets for tourism coupled with decreased and expensive air connectivity is taking a toll. Moreover, inflationary trends, the elevated dependency on goods from abroad and the threat of a global recession are risks that need constant monitoring,” the Bank suggested.

    The report noted that although rising financing costs are not affecting Barbados as much as other countries, in the medium term, those costs could represent an obstacle if public finances are not strong.

    “Therefore, it is crucial that the country achieves and maintains high fiscal surpluses to bring down debt levels, and that it positions itself on a stronger footing. The impact on the most vulnerable households should not be minimised, and active and well-targeted policies to provide support are welcomed,” the document states.

    The IDB also warned that if the global recession and high financing costs extend over time, Barbados may be challenged in securing new affordable resources.(EJ) “Given the threat of a global recession and rising uncertainty, the appetite for sovereign debt of countries considered risky is decreasing.

    Luckily, Barbados underwent a debt restructuring in 2018 that provided longer maturities, lower rates for its debt, and a commitment from domestic debt-holders to roll over short-term debt. Entering into an IMF [International Monetary Fund] programme also unlocked cheap financing from international financial institutions,” it stated, referring to the four-year IMF-funded Barbados Economic Recovery and Transformation (BERT) plan which ended in September this year and is being followed by a second programme that will be one year shorter.

    “Since then, the country has not needed to tap into international private markets to secure resources. The new IMF three-year programme will result in extended access to cheap funds, but in the medium-term, debt service will increase again as support from international financial institutions will need to be repaid. If the global recession and high financing costs extend over time, Barbados could face difficulties in securing new affordable resources,” the report added.

    In assessing the Government’s policy responses to controlling inflation, the IDB was not impressed with the decision to reduce Value Added Tax (VAT) on a list of critical care items such as diapers and vitamins, cap VAT on gasoline and diesel, and cut the VAT rate from 17.5 per cent to 7.5 per cent on the first 250 kilowatt/hour of electricity used by households.

    “VAT-reduction policies, although wellintentioned, tend to be regressive and untargeted.

    Other policies such as cash transfer programmes targeted to the most vulnerable households are more appropriate,” the report suggested.

    It took note of the Government’s announcement in October that it would soon launch the 1 000 Most Vulnerable Families Programme, a comprehensive undertaking that involves monetary transfers and aims to improve overall living conditions.

  14. “The obvious question is to what extent our private sector to blame for an unimaginative investment environment.”

    Globalisation has squeezed businesses out of the game

    • BWA shake-up
      Most directors replaced as minister pursues new vision
      by CARLOS ATWELL carlosatwell@nationnews.com
      THE BARBADOS WATER AUTHORITY (BWA) has undergone a major shake-up as most of its board directors have been replaced.
      However, Minister of Water Resources Santia Bradshaw said the changes did not constitute any bad blood and were merely in line with the new direction in which the authority now had to go.
      “I’ve reviewed and made changes on all of my boards, so I don’t know what the issue is with changing the BWA board. I don’t have [any] rifts with anyone.
      “I have been working with the former board for the last 12 months. I was the minister since January and the former minister (Ian Gooding-Edghill) installed that board before General Elections [in January],” she told the DAILY NATION in a telephone interview yesterday.
      “Having reviewed what lies ahead in terms of the needed reforms for
      the BWA, it was my judgement that we needed a new set of people who may bring another set of expertise to the table to help Government to achieve its reforms.
      “The truth is, Government’s agenda is requiring us to cut the operating costs of many state-owned enterprises and therefore we have to be very clinical in how we approach procurement issues and operating expenses as we get ready to deal with issues such as climate change.”
      Bradshaw, who is also Deputy Prime Minister, said the BWA had an important role to play in helping Barbados tackle the climate crisis, so it was important to have “a different set of faces with a different level of expertise” serving on its board. She maintained the former board had done a “fantastic” job but had been showing its age following two resignations.
      “There were two resignations where one person decided to move on and the other, former deputy chairman Sir Allan Fields, had resigned early on.
      “I had decided to continue as we had enough people to go on but after the second resignation, as I was in the process of filling the positions and reviewing what we needed to do, I decided I would change the board one time,” she said.
      Bradshaw said Cabinet approval for the changes came last week Thursday and the new board took effect from the day after.
      Of the former board, only Senator Patricia Parris and Natasha Small remain.
      The new board of directors is chaired by David Wright, who has decades of experience in international financial services and once served on the boards of BIBA and the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation, while the deputy chairman is Dodridge Miller, the group president and chief executive officer of the Sagicor Financial Corporation Limited.
      The other board members include De-Anne Cumberbatch, Dr Albert Best, Michelle Straughn, Allan Kelly, Chris Bellamy, the Chief Medical Officer or nominee, the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Water Resources or nominee and the Chief Agricultural Officer or nominee.
      Earlier this month, both Bradshaw and former chairman Stevon Roberts attended the official opening of the Castle Grant reservoir in St Joseph.

      Source: Nation

  15. Yes, it is true that we are racing like a Porsche towards a concrete wall on which we will crash.

    The fiscal consolidation course would only have worked under perfect conditions. But our honourable government had to fight volcanic ash, a hurricane, treacherous civil servants with DLP partisanship, OSA, Corona, the lunatic BAMP doctors, a lazy and superstitious population. That’s just too many opponents.

    What is our government’s fault that tourism recovery has been delayed for a year because our superstitious natives don’t want vaccination? Nothing. What can our government do about the fact that work ethic is as far away from the indigenous masses as the moon is from the earth? Nothing. And so on and so forth.

    Our honourable government is making the best of a hopeless situation. For that I thank you from the bottom of my heart!

    • This is part of the problem we have as well, limited investment options for individuals to grow wealth. Not everyone is comfortable with throwing money at an idea or even equity financing. This is understandable because of what many agree is a high level of financial literacy.


      Fortress reports challenges to mutual funds
      Risky government credits and limited investment options continue to be a major challenge for mutual funds in the Caribbean, says Investment Director of Fortress Fund Managers Roger Cave.
      He gave this indication as he reported that after a good start to the 2022 financial year, the Barbados dollar funds managed by Fortress Fund Managers declined late in the year, although still outperforming those in other markets.
      Highlights of the three Barbados dollar funds – Fortress Caribbean High Interest Fund, Fortress Caribbean Growth Fund and Fortress Caribbean Pension Fund – were shared with investors recently in the 2022 Annual Report.
      Cave pointed out that the Fortress Caribbean High Interest Fund continued to face challenges finding new local investments consistent with its risk and return objectives, and undeployed cash remained a drag on performance.
      Cave noted that Fortress had written consistently about fixedincome investors in the Caribbean facing two important challenges in earning healthy returns – risky government credits and limited investment options in Caribbean bond markets, and exceptionally low prevailing bond yields in the United States and other major markets.
      However, Cave explained that the first challenge remained and was “possibly more acute because of stresses caused by the pandemic”.
      “The second challenge, however, had seen much improvement.
      With this year’s historic sell-off in global bonds, US bond yields, and, therefore, future return prospects are now the highest they’ve been in 15 years,” he said.
      He reported that the Fortress Caribbean High Interest Fund had a “rare” negative return of four per cent for the year ended September 30, 2022.
      Cave said the returns in the Fund occurred “in an unusually volatile and negative period for global bond markets”.
      “As post-pandemic inflation remains stubbornly high, the US Federal Reserve hiked its target rate five times bringing it from zero at the start of the year to a range of three to 3.25 per cent by September 30,” Cave added.
      The Fund’s net asset value of its accumulation shares decreased from $2.1220 last year to $2.0383 as of September 30, 2022. The distribution shares declined from $1.0132 to $0.9730.
      Total assets remained at $143 million as positive net subscriptions from pensions and monthly savings programmes continued. The Fund’s compound annual return since inception in 2002 was four per cent, excluding fees and expenses.
      In relation to the Caribbean Growth Fund, Cave reported that after an exceptionally strong year in 2021, that Fund declined 8.4 per cent for the year ended September 30, 2022.
      “The financial year started very well with the Fund’s net asset value reaching an all-time high of $7.76 per share in early April. At that time the Fund was up over eight per cent for the first six months of the financial year and was posting a one-year return over 16 per cent,” he reported.
      Cave noted that the second half of the year was “very difficult” for this fund as stubbornly high inflation resulted in several hikes in interest rates by the US Federal Reserve.
      This combined with high energy prices, led to significant declines in financial markets across the world, impacting equities, bonds and currencies, he said.
      Cave noted, however, that the Fund’s value orientation and its diversification led to its portfolio “holding in much better than what was experienced by most markets globally”.
      The Caribbean Growth Fund’s net asset value declined to $6.5803 from $7.1830 and net assets were $565 million, compared to $598 million a year prior. its annual compound rate of return since inception in 1996 was $7.6 per cent.
      The Caribbean Pension Fund was down in all classes of share during the review period, following what was an exceptionally strong performance in 2021.
      The aggressive accumulator share declined 8.3 per cent, the Conservative Consolidator share was down 7.1 per cent while the share for the Capital Share was down 4.4 per cent.
      Cave said the year was noteworthy in that global stocks and bonds registered meaningful declines over the same period, in the face of high inflation and dramatic interest rate hikes from central banks.
      In his 2022 Annual Report, he also reported that although outperforming their benchmarks, Fortress Fund Managers’ US dollar funds declined in 2022 after experiencing an “exceptionally strong” 2021.
      Cave said the year ended September 30, 2022 saw “sharp declines across nearly all global asset classes, impacting Fortress Fund Managers’ US dollar funds. But they still outperformed their benchmark”.
      The two sub-funds of the World Funds – the Fortress World Growth Fund and the Fortress World Fixed Income Fund – declined 19.7 per cent and 12 per cent respectively for the year, “both outperforming their benchmarks but still squarely in negative territory”.
      Cave noted that in relative terms, the World Growth Fund benefited from the outperformance of higher quality, better-valued shares during the year, as the speculative bubble of the last few years unwound.
      “This was one encouraging feature of the year as some of the riskier areas of the equity markets dropped 50 per cent to 70 per cent or more,” said Cave.
      Fortress’ consistent focus on profitable, proven companies trading at reasonable valuations was key. The company said this helped sidestep some of the worst damage during the year’s market weakness.
      Cave explained: “The Fund’s allocations across global equities were all down, with the most pronounced weakness in international and emerging markets as US Federal Reserve tightening pushed major currencies down 10 per cent or more, adding to local equity market declines.”
      Regarding the world Fixed Income Fund, its performance was helped by a relatively short average term on maturity and focused on high-quality credits during a period of unusually high volatility in bonds and widening credit spreads, he said.
      Fortress manages over $800 million in assets across 12 funds with investments in regional, US, international and emerging markets. (PR/MM)

      Source: Barbados Today

  16. “Things are the same all over!!”

    Global recessions are made in USA, but they suffer less than other countries. In third world food prices can rise 4 times more.

  17. The most amazing aspect of the general, global, downward trend is how Blogmaster David has allowed Kiki to mash up every single article on BU with shiite posts, shiite videos and mock contributor names.

    Is it only obvious to Bushie that Kiki is a paid disruptor who’s role is to piss off serious contributions?

    It was a grave error to ban ac and keep Kiki, but then again..

    … there is a time for every thing
    a time to live, and a time to die
    a time to blog, and a time to let shiite reign…

    • @Bush Tea

      This lowly blogmaster will always hesitate to philosophize about anything with you given your wisdom – especially about things unknown LOl. This one time let us suggest we humans love the comfort which comes from long standing arrangements. Unfortunately things never remain the same. We live and we die.

    • @ David
      No philosophizing needed Boss.
      Just ban Kiki’s donkey period! .. and let him go and monopolise the BLP blog with his shaving cream.

      This is a very simple case of ‘disruption by frigging up’ that can be easily solved with a ban in his donkey, and a restriction of one damn pseudonym per IP.

      You clearly don’t realize how much BU was pissing off the brass bowl authorities – PRIOR to Kiki’s DDos type of assault.
      The old David would have stamped out that shiite long ago…

      Tired of the lotta Kiki shiite now…

  18. As an exercise, I spent some time browsing the site of Fortress Fund. I was able (quickly) to find the fees charged by the four funds that I looked at. This is good and is one of the first things that I look for.

    I will also point out that the fees though concerning were lower than some of the fees I saw elsewhere. But fees by themselves does not really tell me anything.

    Things I would like to see or easily access
    (1) A chart of NAV/Share over time. I wish to see more than a single date and price (Performance and Fees over time)
    (2) Percentage return over life of the fund
    (3) What stocks/bonds are the funds invested in (Fund composition)
    (4) Some ideas of what funds are in the same class, so that I can make a comparison of the fund performance when compared to others (I need a benchmark

  19. @ Bushman

    FYI I have been placed on double secret probation on Bu where half of my spiritual messages have been blocked

    You lost the plot a long time ago with your Covid conspiracies

  20. This is not directly related to my earlier post.

    There was a time when contributors on financial matters would suggest 5 stocks to buy and would start with Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, Google and say Merck. There was nothing for a reader wishing to invest and willing to accept an element of risk and to go with solid and less established stocks instead of following the crowd.

    Now hardly anyone talk of the FANG stocks.

  21. Theocracy
    Fortress is a Private Equity, Hedge Fund which means it operates outside regulation and is generally used by institutional investors

    Past performance is not a guide to future performance and may not be repeated. The value of investments and the income from them may go down as well as up and investors may not get back the amounts originally invested.

  22. So is Sagicor the new private buyer in the BWA Sweepstakes? The Chair and Vice Chair are from Sagicor. There to “clean it up” prior to acquisition. The GEL CFO stays, Small, and the two have always ‘good relations’.

  23. @TheO
    Plenty still mention Fang, maybe to sell vs buy. Tesla?
    Go check Maxar, the little satellite op. It is better to be lucky than smart 🤓🤓

    • Not encouraging shite. Rather the darling Tesla is in the same declining basket. And EV are predicted to be in over supply come summer-fall with many players.

  24. @David
    No unpacking required.
    What is disruption? Covid? Weather?
    Disrupting the string of annual deficits barring an extraordinary event (default).
    You already know the options and the consequences.
    Keep on, keeping on.

  25. Stocks are a Risk exposure and you should claw back your money asap
    I use a 60% investment formula (I personally developed)
    where when your stocks go up 60% you sell 60% holdings
    which means you get 96% (160% x 60%) of your investment money back and sit on 40% stocks that cost 4% of original investment, (ignoring buy and sell fees)

  26. “If only I could get one to the 60% level 😂😂”

    perhaps you should have an awakening realisation the stock game is a scam
    fund managers invest millions of other peoples money for 10% or less profits (10% of 1 million is a good turnaround)
    when you realise that they also sell short stocks they don’t own you should get out the kitchen
    the banking game is all about fees and treasury’s overnight deposits during settlement

  27. “exactly why I never get to 60? Take the gains and reload.”

    so how much will you invest in one punt
    small $100s punts are eaten up with fees and commissions

    • @NO
      Maxar is a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange. Advent plans to pay out investors at $53 a share, which Advent notes is “129% over Maxar’s closing stock price of $23.10 on December 15, 2022, the last full trading day …

      The price is now $51.00 .. There is some litigation as well.. some think $53.00 was not enough.

    • @TheO
      I have owned Maxar on-off for the past 20yrs. I made good money on several of its run ups over the years. When I bailed in Feb, it was at a loss, like $5/share. Like most, it fell by +/-30% by Oct. It was on my short list to buy in the $27 range (Cdn$ it also trades on the TSX). It has always had great technology (my limited opinion) but never monetized it fully. When I asked friends in the inv buzz for their thoughts in Oct, and all said NO to Maxar, that’s all I needed to know? Hence why it was pure luck that I got back in.

    • I don’t have advisers I pay. Trades are $7.99 a pop. Negligible costs these days.
      2022 has been tough. Been playing reporting pops. Won 7/10. The last one, I was lucky my stop just cost me $5/share. It was LuLu and it’s numbers were ok, but it dropped like $50(>15% in one day?) Would have been great playing the drop? But I didn’t. Shit happens.

    • Today’s Nation Editorial

      2023 – a rocky road ahead
      As we enter the New Year, most Barbadians can look back with pride at some of our achievements during 2022. There has been no major economic dislocation although Barbadians have had to endure some hardships and high prices during the year.
      We are technically still in the Christmas season which is supposed to be synonymous with joy. The familiar carols proclaim this message, with Joy To The World resounding in many churches, while the more secular counterpart encourages others to have A Holly Jolly Christmas.
      It is often said that the real emotions of the season are a bit more complex. For many people, late December produces a kind of “toxic brew of nostalgia and melancholy”. It’s perhaps difficult not to remember loved ones missing from the holidays. It is also important to spare a thought for those going through those ranges of emotions.
      All people, even children, move on, grow apart or pass on – all these hit home with a special poignancy at this time of year.
      Notwithstanding, Government
      this year has tried its best to mitigate the impact of the high prices on fuel and some targeted items in the supermarkets for a while.
      As a country, we are still relying heavily on a good winter tourist season to pull us through a difficult patch as Tuesday’s Daily Nation clearly indicated. It stated that Government will have to fork out $1.5 billion to pay creditors this financial year alone. This was detailed in the midyear Budget review for the period April to September 2022 which was produced by the Ministry of Finance, Economic Affairs and Investment and laid in the House of Assembly on December 16.
      The review noted that Government was facing a $379 million budget deficit in the last half of the current financial year and debt payment totalling $500 million.
      Minister Straughn said that “significant financing is needed to meet this gap and is expected to be met by domestic and external funding”.
      It is clear that Government is unable to extricate itself from the twin evils of debt and deficit. This situation comes on the heels of an interesting exchange between two distinguished economists in last week’s Midweek Nation.
      We should point out that, invariably, agreement with a given statement
      or opinion strongly depends on its attribution. Economists were more likely to agree with a statement if it was attributed to a mainstream source than a heterodox one.
      In their public response to an International Monetary Fund (IMF) debt sustainability analysis which assessed the overall risk of Government debt stress as moderate and public debt as sustainable, this dichotomy was played out.
      Professor of Finance at the University of the West Indies, Justin Robinson said that while Government was on a path to reach its target of 60 per cent debt-to-GDP (gross domestic product) ratio by 2035, there are risks involved but that indeed the debt was “too high” and public finances have to be managed to get us to a lower level of debt.
      Professor Emeritus Michael Howard was slightly less diplomatic, saying the IMF owed Barbados an explanation on how the debt could be labelled as sustainable in the face of the global threats of war and inflation.
      The consensus between the economists is the same though expressed differently: the debt is too high. One thing is certain: the road ahead in 2023 is going to be rocky. Fiscal discipline is critical.

  28. For some things, my head is extremely hard. I have attempted to understand ‘options’ but I can never get it.

    I believe the book is right next to my book on how to play the guitar.

    I buy and hold …

    • The long and short of it is that you are old fashion. @TheO

      You prefer to carry a long position. Good luck with that approach in these times.

  29. man’s life is like a river that does not know the vastness of ocean it journeys to join

    I assume (guess) Barbados does not have any real hills or rivers or an Underground in a literal or metaphorical sense

    “to utter in a low voice, repeat internally, mutter”
    ‘what is true worship’ and what is the nature of God’

    Japji Recited in English

  30. I have attempted to understand ‘options’ but I can never get it.

    An option is a derivative (not in primary market) that allows you to purchase stock in the future at a given price.

  31. “You prefer to carry a long position. Good luck with that approach in these times.”

    Are you inferring Theorcracy is anal
    (*) lasting for an immeasurably or indefinitely long period of time.

  32. Zero-sum game is a mathematical representation in game theory and economic theory of a situation which involves two sides, where the result is an advantage for one side and an equivalent loss for the other. In other words, player one’s gain is equivalent to player two’s loss, therefore the net improvement in benefit of the game is zero.

    If the total gains of the participants are added up, and the total losses are subtracted, they will sum to zero.

    • At the racetrack less the 15% cut the track takes. $1M bet 850k returned. (less than zero) But these governments are flooding the markets with money.

    • Experts say there is the possibility that cost of living may may increase in new year

      By Colville Mounsey
      colvillemounsey@nationnews.com B arbadians hoping that 2023 will bring some ease in the cost of living crunch impacting the country are likely to be disappointed.
      In fact, if the predictions of economists Jeremy Stephen and Professor Michael Howard hold true, Barbadians might find themselves paying even more for goods and services next year.
      Meanwhile, president of the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI), Anthony Branker, said the business community was expecting to deal with more of the same global supply chain issues in the new year.
      No abatement in sight
      Stephen told the Sunday Sun that with no abatement in sight to the global supply chain challenges, unless the country recognised the type of growth that could offset these cost, chances of an ease in prices are slim.
      “I don’t think that Barbadians appreciate one fact well enough and that is you live on a small island and the cost of living will always go up because you live where constrained supply is a fact of life. This is going to be the case unless somebody magically changes the laws of economics overnight, where we can expect some great return of growth that more than subsidises our cost of living or begins to abate the cost of living going forward. So I can put Barbadians on notice now that prices are going to go up, it is just a matter of how much,” said Stephen, who is a former banking and finance lecturer at the University of the West Indies.
      “Given how the tourism season has performed thus far and the fact that it has not returned to prepandemic travelling behaviours, we can expect that next year is going to be a bit of a struggle if current trends continue. Maybe it’s because the region is still a very expensive destination compared to other newly opened and promoted markets. The debt levels are still too high, so growth is likely to be tepid,” he added.
      Concurring with Stephen’s outlook was Professor Emeritus at the University of the West Indies, Michael Howard, who said that current global challenges stemming from the war in Ukraine and the poor performance of the British economy were likely to be a wet blanket on economic activity at home while continuing to heighten inflation.
      “Things are not going to be as good as one would have hoped for. The world economy is not expected to perform very well. One cannot expect exceptional growth in the world economy and because Barbados is a small island, anything that affects the world economy will affect us. So I definitely think that the inflation will continue, it is only a matter of how high it will go. I also foresee continued anxiety with the behaviour of the British economy and the war in Ukraine. These anxieties are likely to have a dampening effect on economic activity next year,” Howard said.
      On the other hand, Branker indicated that the business sector was well aware of the continued impact of the exogenous shocks, but noted that as was the case in 2022, the business sector again stood ready to work with Government and other stakeholders to come up with workable solutions in 2023.
      “The BCCI, in response to Government’s efforts to help ease the impact of the rising cost of living on Barbadians, led the negotiation with Government to establish the social compact which limited the mark-up on a basket of items.
      “We laud the members of the Chamber, particularly retailers and distributors,
      who have continued to adhere to the terms of the Compact, while faced with the impact of supply chain challenges on their businesses.”
      “It is anticipated that 2023 will continue in the mould of 2022 as long as the world continues to be in such an unstable state. We, however, plan on increasing our relevance to the business community as we seek to build on the gains of 2022. We will seek to be top of mind as we enhance other areas of collaboration for all our members and continue to develop harmonious approaches to business solutions. We foresee working with Government directly and at the Social Partnership level in carving out the way forward for business and all Barbadians,” Branker said.
      His view was wholeheartedly supported by former chairman of the BCCI and prominent businessman Eddie Abed, who told the Sunday Sun that the sector was “hoping for the best but preparing for the worst”.
      “We are not expecting any improvement in prices next year. The signs are that cost of living in terms of non-essential goods may have stabilised or, in some instances, have started to come down. It is such a precarious situation, and the global market is so unstable that you can’t bank on it. We have to first see a few months of stability and certainty before we can say that we anticipate a downturn in prices. As long as the war in Europe continues the price of oil will remain high and that affects everything. So, in a nutshell, we are preparing for things to remain the same or [get] even slightly worse,” said Abed.

      Source: Nation

      Greenidge back in US confident of economic growth
      By Colville Mounsey colvillemounsey@nationnews.com

      As Government executes a second Barbados Economic Recovery and Transformation (BERT) programme, it will be without the guidance of one of the key architects of the International Monetary Fund-approved plans.
      Dr Kevin Greenidge, who was seconded from the IMF to serve as Senior Economic Advisor to the Mia Amor Mottley administration for four-and-ahalf years, has returned to his substantive post in Washington in the United States, where he spoke to the Sunday Sun in a telephone interview.
      However, the IMF Senior Economist assured Barbadians that BERT 2022 was well on course for similar success as its predecessor BERT 2018, even without his presence. He also predicted that 2023 was likely to be Barbados’ strongest year since the economic recovery effort began.
      “This is not a one-man show, we were part of an economic team, a team of very competent persons, led by the Prime Minister. The team is more than capable to continue the work that we began and to move the country to where it needs to be. In addition, over the last four-and-a-half years we have continued to build capacity in the public sector, we have also continued to engage the private sector. The way I see it is that it is not just the Government and a few people pushing BERT, it is the entire Barbados population,” said Greenidge, who officially ended his secondment yesterday.
      Par for the course
      He said that having a second IMF programme was essentially par for the course for countries that have availed themselves of the facility because the types of structural reforms necessary cannot be done in four years. He pointed out that the setbacks under the COVID-19 pandemic made a successor programme almost inevitable.
      “We have had the experience collectively over the last four-and-a-half years and we have seen that we can get success, we have achieved it under
      BERT 2018 and there is no better encouragement than being able to taste success. So, I am really confident that BERT 2022 will be successful,” he added.
      However, Greenidge cautioned the country that now was not the time to rest on its laurels, noting that like the rest of the world, Barbados would be beset by a number of external challenges next year.
      He said that given the groundwork already laid, Barbados was in a strong position to meet those challenges and still achieve significant growth.
      “In my view, 2023 is going to be one of our best years on record. I agree that there are a lot of vulnerabilities and challenges internationally with the continued high levels of prices. There is the potential de-globalisation where we are seeing tensions between the west and east, where we see countries starting to adopt the position of doing business with countries that are friendly to them. These types of issues are going to continue to put pressure on global supply chains.”
      “So, there are a lot of headwinds in the international arena, but I think Barbados is in a very strong position to weather those headwinds and to get amazing growth in next year. We have some work still to do such as the reform of the SOEs (state-owned enterprises) to make them more fit for purpose,” Greenidge said.
      Incremental surplus
      Under BERT 2022, Barbados will be aiming for an incremental primary surplus which starts at two per cent surplus next year. He explained that the fiscal targets were not likely to compound the international challenges, as the primary balances would have been calibrated to have enough space for Government to step up capital investment to about $500 million per year. He said that this was the highest level of capital investments on record. “It is capital investment that drives growth. So, first of all, the path to the primary balances leaves more than sufficient space for the Government to invest in the economy and to get the growth working with the private sector. Secondly, the space for capital spending allows the country to adjust accordingly in case there is shock, so it is a comfortable path in my view,” the economist said.
      Looking back on his time in Barbados, Greenidge
      said his was an opportunity which many in his position at the IMF seldom get, namely, to apply their skills to help their home countries.
      “When you get an opportunity like this to come to your own country it is different. Usually, the IMF does not allow you to work in your home country and that is the reason I took leave. It was a rewarding experience because it directly affects me, every policy advice impacts my family, my friends and the people around me. So I have a vested interest in giving the best policy advice and I am proud to have done exactly that,” Greenidge said.

      Source: Nation

  33. @ David

    The arrivals are encouraging let’s hope the spend is there as well. Hopefully we can return to 2019 -2020 numbers finally this year.

  34. Are we losing our ‘place’ in the English speaking Caribbean?
    Are we still a part of the “Big Four” or have we now lower on the list?
    I have been following the news and it would appear that we are in reverse gear whilst other islands are actively moving forward. I have already commented that in stories where I expected to see the word “Barbados” I am now seeing one of the ‘smaller’ islands mentioned.

    Watching the press initiatives and new deals being announced, I am seeing the fancy footwork of the Ali shuffle as our island is moving backward. We need to stop navel gazing and look at how our neighbors are making progress. We talk of punching above our weight whilst our neighbors are moving up to higher weight classes.

    “Ladies and gentlemen in this corner is the a flyweight who hits like a bantamweight, and his opponent is a middleweight who hits like a middleweight”.
    Perhaps we need to tackle the real problems facing is instead of announcing esoteric initiatives that will benefit a few.


    Perhaps we need to tackle the real problems facing is instead of announcing esoteric initiatives that will benefit a few.
    Trade in digital, cryptocurrency …… for
    Bread and butter! Meat and potatoes!

  35. Based on what is happening with digital currencies globally I for one would place little confidence in them taking us anywhere at this time.

    • Prime Minister Mottley using the R word.

      Message of hope

      PM: We need to build resilience as individuals and as nation
      PRIME MINISTER MIA AMOR MOTTLEY remains optimistic that 2023 “will be a better year” for Barbados.
      Yesterday, she delivered a New Year message in which she spoke about the economy, crime and the environment, noting that 2023 will be a time to “build resilience” while at the same time warning that “the headwinds are still out there internationally”.
      “Last year, we were able to grow in a way that we anticipated, recovering from the very, very difficult decline of 2020 when we saw our economy decline by almost 14 per cent.
      “Indeed, last year we have been able to grow and I am asking us to ensure that if we can stay the course, that we will continue to do so again.
      “The truth is that the headwinds are still out there internationally, but we equally know that if we work carefully and are careful stewards of all that we do, we can in fact make it,” she said.
      Working together
      Mottley said that over the course of the last few months, Government had been engaging with stakeholders as well as the Social Partnership, “recognising that no matter how much a Government may want us to grow, no matter how much its Prime Minister may want us to grow, that ultimately it depends on all of us working together and making that definable difference to help the needle move”.
      The Prime Minister added: “We are at a difficult point in our country’s development, largely because the world is at a difficult point in its development.
      “What is required of us in 2023 is to build resilience; to build resilience at a personal level, at a community level; to build resilience as a nation, to continue the structural reforms that we’ve been doing, recognising that over the course of the last four years, yes, we have had to say to you to stay the course and to hold on and to hold on tight.”
      While Mottley asked people “to share the burden wherever there is a bounty”, she said those who were experiencing hardship would be supported by Government.
      In terms of violence and gun crimes, she stated: “We’ve put resources behind being able to do more trials at a quicker rate, being able to give the police and law enforcement that which they need to keep the country safe.”
      However, she added that families and communities needed to also play their part “because guns don’t talk and guns don’t walk”.
      Mottley, who has been speaking globally about environmental issues, urged Barbadians to accept responsibility for their environment.
      “The next 362 days in 2023 can be a period where Barbadians distinguish ourselves by ensuring that we work together to fight off the headwinds internationally.
      That would suggest a very, very difficult year again. We know that we have much to do domestically in terms of our housing programme, in terms of our renewable energy programmes.
      “We know that we will continue to boost our tourism and international business sector, but I don’t want us to focus just on these macro things in terms of the sectoral approaches. I want us to focus on what each of us individually can do to make this country better, to make our communities better, to make our family lives better,” she said.

      Source: Nation

  36. https://barbadostoday.bb/2023/01/05/no-regional-matches-allocated-to-the-island-by-cwi/

    This is a continuation of a comment that I made. No matter how uyou interpret it, Barbados is moving out of the top 4. This is manifesting itself in several different ways.

    From BT
    “I think it is a clear indication from Cricket West Indies that Barbados is being ostracized. You cannot have Barbados as a leading nation in the region not …. host meaningful matches…. I would like to know from Cricket West Indies who sets out the fixtures and who decides where these games are being played,” Wallace said.

    Spin if you want. Reality is a bitch.

  37. https://barbadostoday.bb/2023/01/05/house-settlement/
    “It appears as though Member of Parliament for St Michael East Trevor Prescod won’t have to fight to keep houses being built in his constituency for residents there after all.”

    Me, I got a likkle 2×3 that the wind could blow thru and wind from a fan could blow way. I want uh spot to rent and tekking my house to this constituency. This Barbadus thing en wukking uh me. I’m now from St Michael East. I fuh Prescod.

  38. You know, that I do not like Ralphie (Gonsalves), especially after he used the powers of the state against that young girl “Yugge Farrel”. But as I read the news, I am beginning to like the man.


    No fancy speeches; no outrageous promises for 10,000 houses; just delivering meat and potatoes …

    Say what you like, the man brekking into the Big 4.

  39. TheOGazerts on January 5, 2023 at 1:21 PM said: “This is a continuation of a comment that I made. No matter how you interpret it, Barbados is moving out of the top 4. This is manifesting itself in several different ways.”

    “Spin if you want. Reality is a bitch.”

    Seems as though ‘The O Guy’ is sadly losing his ability to think reasonably and rationally. Perhaps it may be as a result of him having ‘too much time on his hands’ nowadays.
    And, I may have to reluctantly place him in the same category of certain persons who post excessively to BU.

    His above comment isn’t FAIR.

    Unfortunately, he hasn’t placed the situation in its proper perspective and may have PURPOSELY OVERLOOKED an important point made in the BT article he alluded to.
    That “The BCA, under Riley, has had previous run-ins with CWI under its present leadership.”

    It is a known fact current CWI president Ricky Skerritt and vice-president Dr. Kishore Shallow are not too fond of former president, Dave Cameron.

    BCA president Conde Riley publicly supported Cameron in his re-election bid as president of CWI.

    ‘The BCA did not support the candidature of president Ricky Skerritt and vice-president Dr Kishore Shallow in the elections that saw former president Dave Cameron unseated.’
    ‘And Riley was highly critical of Skerritt and Shallow when the coaching staff and selectors were dismissed just weeks before the World Cup in England.’

    On Saturday, October 26, 2019, CWI announced the schedule for the tours to the Caribbean of New Zealand and South Africa. No matches were scheduled for Kensington Oval.
    Some people believe

    Recall on Friday, June 26, 2020, Cameron confirmed was seeking to succeed Shashank Manohar of India as chairman of the International Cricket Council (ICC), which would’ve required him to have the support of two full ICC members.
    Cameron was proposed by the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA) to be chairman of ICC and needed a second and final nomination, which he hoped would’ve come from CWI.
    The US Cricket Hall of Fame wrote to the world body recommending Cameron as the man for the job…… and CWI asking the Board to nominate him.

    Skerritt and Shallow refused to support him.

    In fact, on Monday, June 29, 2020, during the Nationwide Sports Show in Jamaica, Shallow made it clear Cameron would not be getting his support.

    Riley held the opinion CWI should support Cameron. While speaking on Tuesday, June 30 edition of ‘Mason & Guests,’ Riley said Shallow ‘spoke out of turn.’
    Supporting Cameron ‘is not a personal decision. It is a Cricket West Indies decision where all the directors would sit and decide if Dave Cameron is the right man for the job.’
    The ‘governing body of cricket in the region needed to support their own.’

    There are several more examples.

    Also remember, on Thursday, November 9, 2017, Antigua’s PM Gaston announced in Parliament that the Government of Antigua and Barbuda and the then West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), would jointly purchase the Stanford Cricket Ground and Sticky Wicket restaurant for US$7.5M.
    Browne said the WICB would contribute US$4.5M, giving them 60% shareholdings…… and the Antiguan government the remaining US$3M.
    The PM also said he believed the joint agreement ‘would help grow the island’s economy and keep the WICB’s headquarters in Antigua.’

    The property was subsequently renamed ‘Coolidge Cricket Ground’…… and it is interesting to note that all or the majority of WI cricket team’s practice matches are played at that venue, as well as several international tournaments.

    • Fewer breaks
      Govt reducing concessions to recoup lost revenue
      BARBADIANS ARE BEING put on notice that starting this year Government will be reducing the amount of import tariff and tax concessions granted.
      Noting that the specifics on the cutbacks would be made public at a later date, Minister in the Ministry of Finance Ryan Straughn said Government was taking stock of the areas where revenue was being lost. He explained that this would be necessary to manage the fiscal budget, as Government shoots for a surplus under the Barbados Economic Recovery and Transformation (BERT) Programme 2022.
      The minister made the comments while responding to recent warnings by economists Jeremy Stephen and Professor Michael Howard, both of whom predicted that additional taxes were likely to be on the cards for 2023.
      However, Straughn made it clear that the consultations with the ministries that would determine the Budget and any possible revenue-raising measures, were still in progress. He also said that while the ruling administration was comfortable with its current tax posture, it was also focused on raising revenue through growth as well as reducing expenditure through reforms.
      “One of the things we are also examining in 2023 is the quantum of exemptions that are given as a mechanism to be able to close the revenue gap. In the next 12 to 18 months we would have reduced and better streamlined concessions. “This is to ensure that we get the right balance by looking at the amount of revenue that we are foregoing and making sure that there is greater compliance within that space in order to help with the fiscal situation,” said Straughn, who disclosed that the Customs and Excise Department had already started the groundwork.
      “We are working with Customs, and with the upgrade to Asycuda World, we are having access to that data now in almost real time. It gives us an opportunity to have a better look at what is processing through the system, and we are conscious that we have to address that as part of the mix of being able to raise any revenue.
      “So compliance in this area is going to take a more aggressive posture. It was our intention to start that specific set of work in 2020 but of course the focus was on COVID,” he added.
      However, Stephen, a former banking and finance lecturer at the University of the West Indies, said the country was not likely to realise the type of growth necessary. He cautioned that it was likely to come down to a choice between accumulating more debt or raising taxes.
      “Growth has returned but not in the sense that on its own it is enough to lessen our debt burden. So, in my view, the Government will be left with a choice of whether to increase the taxes on society in the name of future economic growth. The other option is to continue to put the economy under more debt and see if productivity catches up down the line.”
      “Both strategies are dangerous from the perspective of the average consumer but unless we have a big wind such as a new big company or some new big market unfolds in the near term, there won’t be the massive return of growth and Government is constrained debt-wise and fiscally. The massive return of growth is still a few years out,” said Stephen.
      Howard concurred with this view, saying that Government needed to re-evaluate the taxes to determine which ones were most effective.
      “We have to look at the main taxes that provide our revenue. We have to also look at the taxes that are not doing so well and determine what adjustments can be made. We are not earning as we should from the Value Added Tax because people are not paying it in and we need to make the collection of VAT more effective.
      “I think that some austerity will have to come about because I don’t think Government’s ambitious programme is likely to succeed without paying attention to the deficit,” he said.

      Source: Nation

  40. A very thorough response, but …

    I would be the first to admit that I have no or a little knowledge of WI cricket. On the politics of WI cricket, I can easily pass as a dummy. The current game does not show the Caribbean/WI in a positive light.

    However, my power rankings are based on several stories not a single one.
    Again, I repeat where I expect to see the word Barbados, I am seeing the name of another country.

    We may be big on promising 10,000 houses in five years but Gonsalves scores more points with the actual delivery of 150 houses. Meanwhile we are unable set up 150 houses in two years. Initiatives are announced but the other islands are more realistic and are in the execution phase.

    On July 1, in BarbadosToday, there was a story about ferry service between Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean “Ferry investors ready for business” but more recent stories suggest ferry travel between other islands is more likely. We have fallen off the map.

    In my power ranking Guyana is #1 of the Big 3. Trinidad and Jamaica has the next two spots, but that is due mainly to their ‘size”, the fourth spot is being hotly contested by other governments and reluctantly I am giving the nod to St Vincent.

    I will search for the other stories that influenced my opinion

  41. “On July 1, in BarbadosToday, there was a story about ferry service between Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean “Ferry investors ready for business” but more recent stories suggest ferry travel between other islands is more likely.”


    I understand and agree with the points being made, especially about the ‘Comrade’ and SVG, which I believe is a fair comparison, relative to making promises and fulfilling them.

    As it relates to a ferry service between Barbados and the other Caribbean islands, there has been talk about such a service for over 20 years.

    The president of ‘easyCruise One,’ Stelios Haji-Ioannou, visited Barbados in May 2005, with the hopes of basing his 170-passenger here from November 2005 to April 2006.
    Plans included ‘a weeklong Caribbean loop to islands such as Saint Lucia, Martinique, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and Grenada.’

    The Thursday, August 4, 2016 edition of the Daily Nation reported that a company registered in Barbados named, ‘Caribbean Ferry Service,’ was in the process of finalising paperwork to operate two vessels, ‘The Dream Jet Express’ and ‘The Opal Jet Express,’ for travel and cargo through the region, by the end of 2016.
    The service was supposed to be initially accessible to passengers from BGI, SVG and SLU. And, eventually, other islands would’ve been added to the itinerary.

    However, if we objectively evaluate any feasibility study of such a venture, I don’t believe there would be enough evidence to support the claim “we’ve fallen off the map.”

    For example, what would be the operational, financial, economic, market and scheduling feasibility of operating a ferry service between Barbados and Antigua, St. Kitts, Nevis, Anguilla, Montserrat or St. Barthélemy, especially when one considers fares would be high because of the distance…… and ferries are preferable for short distances?
    St. Vincent and the grenadines; Antigua, Barbuda and Montserrat; Guadeloupe and Dominica; Martinique and St. Lucia; St. Maarten, Saba and St. Eustatius; St. Kitts and Nevis; Trinidad & Tobago…… are examples of islands with ‘short trip’ ferry services.

    Consideration must also be given to sea conditions.

    Interestingly, successive political administration of Grenada and Trinidad have so far been unsuccessful in their efforts to launch a ferry service between both islands.

      Straughn optimistic despite global slowdown forecast
      By Gercine Carter gercinecarter@nationnews.com
      Minister in the Ministry of Finance Ryan Straughn remains optimistic about Barbados’ growth prospects this year, despite a dire world economic forecast.
      He told the Saturday Sun the economic picture is “very positive provided that Barbadians as individuals, and companies and firms operating in Barbados, take the right strategic decisions for the opportunities that we have opened up, such as access to finance and markets. If we do that, then we will be able to navigate 2023, 2024 and 2025 with much more confidence”.
      He conceded the latest world economic forecast coming after the last three years was “not good news, considering that we have seen in 2022 an increase in global interest rates in response to the Ukraine war as well as inflation.
      “The fact that the indicators are suggesting there will be a slowdown because the cost of living has increased significantly across Europe, any news of a global slowdown is not necessarily the news that people want to hear.”
      However, the minister expressed confidence that the mechanisms put in place by Government, such as the recently-established association with Africa’s Afreximbank, will help to provide an additional buffer to what is happening globally.
      “But it means that we have to change the way we have been doing business and seek to expand our market access by being able to access the funding and be able to boost our production capacity,” he added.
      Last month, Straughn predicted a strong economic performance this year supported by an improved tourism performance and the commencement of some large construction projects.
      Still optimistic about the tourism prospects, he said: “Based on the bookings so far, the travel seems to be holding and we hope that will continue. But what we will be mindful of is that obviously if persons are concerned about the cost of living, then that will impact on how much they spend when they are on holiday . . . . The numbers look good, we continue to see healthy spending still and I hope that will continue for the remainder of the year.”
      With regard to construction, he acknowledged rising interest rates will mean the cost of capital to finance private sector development will “pose a challenge” to the developers and may force them to “revise numbers in terms of the scope of the project to be financed”.
      “That certainly is an element that we are monitoring very carefully,” Straughn said. However, he cited the progress on construction of Sam Lord’s Castle, and suggested that could influence other projects to come on stream.

      Source: Nation

  42. He told the Saturday Sun the economic picture is “very positive provided that Barbadians as individuals, and companies and firms operating in Barbados, take the right strategic decisions for the opportunities that we have opened up, such as access to finance and markets. If we do that, then we will be able to navigate 2023, 2024 and 2025 with much more confidence”.
    Same shaving cream that Mia said!

    We elect 30 brass bowl ‘leaders’ and their message is that it is all up to “individuals and companies”, and if things fall apart, it is these individuals and companies who would have failed….

    MEANWHILE, the 30 BBs paying themselves top dollar to talk shiite, giving consultancies and contracts to their friends and family, and seeking out ‘finders fees’ from foreigners – in exchange for the gifting of local assets.

    …and passing new, useless, shiite laws every damn week…

    Note that, not one BB have they been able to get to work successfully….
    -The roads are all like cartloads
    -The Hospital is an embarrassment and insult to the poor
    -NIS scheme mash up
    -Importing $28Million in Steal Houses – and assembling 5 in a year?
    -No action on sewage management
    -They now giving the sugar industry to the same white people that raped it
    -CBC being given away to foreigners
    -Begging the Chinese for someplace for our children to play….

    How low can we get to…?

    The ONLY good news is that Bajans seem to enjoy being ‘played’ like this – even without vaseline.
    So indeed, a people ALWAYS get exactly what they DESERVE.

    @ David
    Do you think that we will EVER hear one of these government jokers come out and articulate a clear, detailed, plan – to move the damn place forward ..or at least to solve some of the problems?
    …and a ‘plan’ is not just promising everyone everything that they ask for, and then skinning your teeth as the mendicunts hold out their hands…

    What a damned and cursed place….
    once blessed!

    Bushie long told wunna about the significance of that ugly monument to Satan that Froon planted on the damn Garrison….

  43. “….stretch our faith to continue to hope for things that should have been seen by now and of promises yet to unfold.”
    Speak fun yuhself Boss…

    Ongoing empty promises may be a comfort to brass,
    but not to stinking Bushie…

    Where Bushie’s faith is grounded, such shiite promises by blind brass bowls are nothing but fodder for derision and mirth…

    Looks like yuh got Kiki in a neck lock…
    Bushie hope that yuh choke de BB.
    ha ha ha

  44. @ David re your Instagram release
    What did Bushie tell you…?

    The Central Bank of Barbados (CBB) and the Financial Services Commission (FSC) today confirmed that the Barbados Public Workers’ Cooperative Credit Union Limited Group of Companies is solvent and condemned social media posts that suggested that CAPITA Financial Services Inc. had collapsed.

    They warned that these alarmist statements could destabilise the financial system and encouraged individuals to be more responsible in their communications on such matters, whether to traditional media or social media outlets.
    What a collection of jackasses!!

    THEY start a shiite panic over some petty issue – and against one of the BEST and most successful financial, social and functional institutions in the shiite place – and only NOW grasp the CONSEQUENCES of their ill-conceived folly.

    Up to Bushie, Each and every one of those jackasses would be fired. Both from the bank and the waste of time FSC.

    Ordinary Bajans, MANY AS VOLUNTEERS, running a complex set of organisations, SUCCESSFULLY and PROFITABLY, and due to circumstances – (many of which were IMPOSED by these same shiite ‘regulators’) happen to be A FEW MONTHS LATE with some shiite report- and these scamps come running with a big hammer – and talking a lotta shiite.

    Meanwhile, The damn TREASURY has been. unaudited now for YEARS.
    Annually, the Auditor General writes scathing reports about practically ALL government agencies – and not a word from these judases.
    Nothing worse than a slave-minded brass bowl handed a set of keys and a stick….
    But in Barbados, they will all probably be promoted to ‘senior’ some shiite….

  45. It gives me great pleasure to inform you that there is positive news on the creation of houses in Barbados.,

    In BT’s e-paper there is a story “Prefab houses due to arrive early February”.
    350 DuraVilla home should arrive in Barbados at the end of January or early February. A further 650 should be here ‘between 90 to 150 days’.

    It appears that these houses from Guyana may be easier to erect than the 150 houses from China.

    Read the story for yourself as there is still mention of 10,000 houses. A story worth following. If these houses construction is executed as planned, then this is major step forward.

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