Reader slams Loveridge for speaking out about Barbados’ faults

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“Please publish this article to bring balance to Loveridge’s arguments”

by JW

This man Adrian Loveridge tries to prove that Barbados is the worst place on earth for tourists to visit. This week he is highlighting the fact that Barbados has nothing to offer tourists in comparison to other destinations. I wonder if Mr. Loveridge ever visited the Bahamas? Apart from beaches and casinos, there is nothing for a tourist to see. Has he gone to Turks and Caicos? There is nothing apart from beautiful beaches. What about Cayman Islands? Nothing apart from the Iguana lizards, turtles, a gift shop with rum cake. There is nothing else to see.

Oh what about my lovely Roatan? Talk about poverty? Visit this country and you would wonder if the people are living in the 18th century. Loveridge, stop criticizing Barbados, take a trip to this country and report back to Barbados Free Press.

Then there is Costa Rica. What is so great about this place? What do they have to offer that Barbados doesn’t? Same old, same old sun and sand.  St. Maarten is famous for its duty free shopping and its beaches.  All Barbados has to do is turn Swan Street into a duty free area and St. Maarten has nothing to offer different from Barbados. I like Aruba for reasons which have nothing to do with tourism. It is taking on the look of a big city and in ten years time, you can call it ‘Little Miami”. There you can find a greater selection of International brand name products than any other country in the Caribbean or South America. Curacao is a big disappointment. All they have to offer that Barbados doesn’t have, is more street vendors.

And now to the countries which have natural beauty apart from sun and sand. St. Lucia is naturally beautiful and they are capitalizing on this feature. However a visit to the country would leave one wondering what is the Government doing with the returns they are getting from tourism. I wonder if the feature writer for the Barbados Free Press has ever gotten out on the streets of St. Lucia and spoken to the nationals. Yes, Barbados is seeing hard times but we are the envy of the average St. Lucian who wonders how Barbadians can still enjoy such high standards of living, education, housing, transportation, health facilities etc. etc… I just left this beautiful island and I am sorry to disappoint Mr. Loveridge, the Mall at Rodney Bay can’t touch our lovely Lime Grove. I saw more staff at their Mall in May this year than tourists. I am happy for them. I wouldn’t say a bad word about a neighbouring Caribbean country but I wonder what does Rodney Bay have to offer that the West Coast of Barbados doesn’t offer.

Now I turn my attention to Jamaica. Parts of that country are heaven on earth. They have everything a tourist could want to see but again where is the tourist money being channeled? If Barbados could only get half of their tourist numbers, we would be a first world country. My house guests from Jamaica two years ago asked me to show them the slums of Barbados. I took them to the worst places here and had a beer or two with them at shops in the respective neighbourhoods. They laughed till they cried and asked if I couldn’t find any place worse, since they felt happy and comfortable where I took them. Mr. Loveridge seems to think that Barbados Government should spend every cent on tourism and neglect the other ministries.

Then there is the Dominican Republic. While visiting the Catholic Basilica in that country, I had the urge to visit the bathroom after a long journey on the bus. What did I experience? The bathrooms are stink stink stink stink. The plumbing reminds me of what existed at public conveniences in the early 60’s in Barbados. Even if I had any intentions of using the facilities, I had to change my mind because there was no toilet paper. Outside of this said same Basilica, the nuns were chasing little school children from begging tourists for money instead of attending school. Is this what Mr. Loveridge wants for Barbados? He can fool the gullible but not me, who have visited 99.9 % Caribbean and Central America, either by plane or cruise ship. Still waiting for my first trip to Cuba. Have I forgotten any of the other tourist destination . Yes…Oh how I love Belize. They have natural beauty and you can see what the Government is doing for the people. I know they have copied our tourism and NIS models and are moving smoothly along.

Barbadians possess that ineffable quality that allows them to be knocked down by life and come back strong than ever. We will ride out this recession. We have been hit hard by the reduction of tourist numbers from the U.K. but that country is having serious economic problems. People like Loveridge should be ashamed to knock the Government for spreading the little money which they have available. His country is seeing hell. If Barfbados is so bad, why doesn’t he return to the U.K? The Daily Mail on its front page of 13th February, 2013 , published a story captioned Millions of British families will NEVER see their finances recover from the economic downturn, admits government. Read the article and then you’ll know why Barbados is in trouble.

93 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism

93 responses to “Reader slams Loveridge for speaking out about Barbados’ faults

  1. BFP

    My comment: Adrian Loveridge has been a lone voice for at least a decade, saying that we must change our ways or bear the consequences.

    Adrian was correct. We are where we are not because of Adrian’s constructive criticism, but because everyone else thought that a little more advertising would keep the tourists coming forever despite our deteriorating product.

    Adrian was correct – but we value free speech and open discussion so we’ll print JW’s letter.

    Robert

  2. Pingback: Reader slams Loveridge for speaking out about Barbados’ faults | Barbados Blog !

  3. Richard

    I have been to Barbados, the beaches, the food, the people, the natural beauty is captivating. I am not sure what some people expect when they travel to other countries, but put simply, if you don’t like it, then just don’t go back, but I am sure many have gone and will go back once they get an opportunity to do so.

  4. FearPlay

    I respect @JW’s opinion and reaction to Mr Loveridge’s many comments over the past years but my interpretation of the intent of Adrian’s articles was to make Barbados a better and more successful destination. Let’s just suppose that all of his comments were in praise of our tourism product, would that have made you happier JW and to what purpose would it have served? Yes, you are entitled to your opinion and most of your observations regarding other Caribbean destinations are accurate but I believe that Adrian is serving the better good. I am also adverse to sitting back and being complacent because I (think) that I am better that those around me.

  5. mac

    JW. Thank you for telling me what’s wrong with the rest of the Caribbean but you forgot to add what’s right with Barbados!

  6. MoneyBrain

    @JW
    You neglected to point out that Bim is far more expensive than many other Cbean and Latin Am destinations!

    Self criticism is very critical to keeping competitors in the rear view mirror.
    Gone are the days when the competition was inconsequential!
    Cuba has many areas like Santa Lucia that look like Bim. It is safer than Bim and much cheaper. Cuba’s flaw is the food which is poor quality in comparison.
    JW, we must never rest on our laurels

  7. Barbados has for many years enjoyed a high standard of living and good infrastructure when compared with some other Caribbean islands, which no doubt is partly responsible for its appeal as a holiday destination for as many years. But times have changed. People want more for their hard-earned money nowadays.

    For JW to suggest that AL should “return to the UK” just because AL recognises the need for Barbados to be proactive in implementing strategies to improve the island’s tourism industry sooner rather than later, is in very poor taste. JW’s view reminds me of people in England who tell anyone Black during a disagreement to “go back home”. Such remarks are unnecessary and I hope that AL will continue to speak out about the need for Barbados to revitalise its tourism industry, as keeping quiet and accepting that “dah is how it is” doesn’t change anything. Just ask Bussa!

  8. JW, this article is WAY off base. Nothing in Adrian’s criticisms smack of anything other than healthy self-criticism and a desire for self-improvement. He is clearly Bajan in all respects apart from origin and his contributions deserve serious thought, rather than nasty, xenophobic attacks.
    I have been to Barbados and can agree with those contributors who defend it as a good place in comparison to most regional destinations. But how does it hurt to want it to be even better??

    I would personally welcome a constructive investor/ resident like Adrian here in the Bahamas and think it is sad that some can dismiss his comments/suggestions so flippantly.

  9. Canadian Tourist

    Denial…. Its not just a river in Egypt.

  10. Victor

    Barbados is great, fantastic, I love it but there really are grounds for criticism, borne out by the flip in visitor numbers. Why this gut reaction, slamming constructive criticism? Just because Adrian points out flaws is not a reason to react hysterically and accuse him of disloyalty etc. People need to understand why tourists choose alternative destinations. Money is scarce, choose a cheaper island just a few miles distant. That’s the natural reaction of a package tourist. Maybe they will decide they prefer Barbados after all, having experienced a less fulfilling trip to St Lucia for example.
    Nobody can deny natural beauty of Barbados has been diminished by overbuilding for those who seek the pristine and unspoilt. The blazee attitude of those who work in shops etc. can get a negative response from a visitor who might have saved up all year. I’ve mentioned before how I saw staff at Cave Shep rudely dismiss the polite remarks of an elderly Canadian tourist with complete silence and not one word said during the transaction nor any eye contact at all.
    Being rude about what Adrian has said is a really good example of locking the stable door after the horse has bolted.
    It’s no use pretending everything is hunky dory when visitor figures blam blam in your face. There’s this idea that if you don’t express what is bad, then the bad won’t exist. See North Korea, ex Soviet Russia and China for that.
    Lime Grove? In the immortal words of the song “Cocovardo oh how lovely” NOT. It’s being propped up by the franchisees. Holetown beach? Oh how frightful.
    Anyone who thinks that turning Barbados into a mini-Miami is a good idea must be off their rocker. Miami has cornered the market in Miami-ness. Why go to a second class version when you can get cheaper prices, great service wonderful architecture and be in the US having a unique cultural experience of the essence of what Miami is?
    Bajans ought to get a grip and an understanding of the product they offer. “Unspoiled Carribean Island” is now off the agenda. “charming, sweet people”, get an eye-opener. Bajans can’t even be charming or sweet to each other, let alone tourists.
    What Bajans CAN do is to continue to be their witty and lovable, wordly-wise and unique selves as the most fun people in the whole Caribbean. They have an ability to laugh at themselves which is not expressed by some of the correspondents infuriated by what Adrian has said. The more condos and malls that are built just for rich tourists stops visitors from getting to know the real Barbados as it just becomes yet another destination for the boring big spenders. This over-development does not help the average Bajan, nor the economy.
    People may choose other destinations for a variety of reasons but they will never be able to duplicate what it’s like to holiday in Barbados, bet you!

  11. TWWIFOS

    Well, if your argument is “Look at these other places. Barbados is not so bad compared to…..”, then take your head out of your butt. Right next door, St Lucia is eating our lunch.

    I can’t help but think that the reason why Adrian has made so many enemies over the years is not because his ideas are bad. It’s because he’s white AND a foreigner. There…I’ve said it! It does not matter that he has lived here for over 20 years and has tried to make Barbados a better place to live. He will ALWAYS be treated with contempt because the people running the show don’t want to be told that they don’t have a clue – especially from him. As soon as an article is posted, the usual trolls (you know who you are) all line up to take their cheap shots. It’s so predictable and boring.

    Keeping giving them hell Adrian! I don’t agree with everything you have to say, but I support you. Time for people to wake up around here.

  12. MoneyBrain

    Prophets for Profit are not accepted in their own country farless!

  13. Adrian Loveridge

    It’s official. Despite all the hype and predictions JULY 2013 long stay visitor arrivals are DOWN by 6.5 per cent, the 16th consecutive monthly decline in arrival numbers. This on top of a 12 per cent decline in JULY 2012 when compared to the previous year.

  14. Craig Thomson

    Poor JW; there are none so blind, as those who will not see. He is, regrettably, symptomatic of the problems which Barbados is facing.
    He is living in a fool’s paradise if he believes that the island will ride out this tourist recession. As a Brit, with long standing personal and business interests on the island, I have witnessed a long and gradual decline in the attractions of this once beautiful place. And I have further bad news for him; the UK’s economy is improving and Barbados is no longer flavour of the month. We’re off to Mauritius, Seychelles, Bali, you name it. It’s just as easy and, more to the point, value for money.
    Tourism should be a gold mine for Barbados. But the people who get paid to promote the island can’t even put together a press release for international exposure!
    JW – don’t shoot the messanger.

  15. personally, I think it is unfortunate for Barbados to rely to heavily on UK tourists. British travellers simply do not spend much, even at the best of times.

    Americans spend more, but so too do people from Latin America and Asia, which have a culture that is more apt to shop and eat in expensive restaurants than Brits. In the Bahamas, we have few Brits and nobody complains about that!

    Barbados will never compete for cheapness with Bali or Mauritius, for the simple reason that these are poor countries. Barbados will ALWAYS be, like Nassau, an expensive jurisdiction and should forget trying to compete with cheaper places. Rather, Adrian’s suggestion of an emphasis on Macau style convention facilities would be a step in the right direction.

    As a high income, high cost destination, Barbados has no choice but to continue moving up the tourism food chain rather than seeing itself as being in competition with cheap places. Stopping trying to attract cheapskate, bargain hunting British tourists would be a step in the right direction.

  16. MoneyBrain

    @Bahammy
    I argued the same in my Dissertation in 1976.
    When you have a small landmass you have to maximise profit per Tourist since space is limited and the sociological negatives increase exponentially at some point.

  17. northern girl

    We are not cheap skates. We just look for value for money. The cost of room only accommodation now in Barbados is just not competitive when compared with All Inclusive packages on other Caribbean islands. Just returned from Jamaica where there was plenty to do and see and for a reasonable price too. The scenery was fantastic and the hospitality from the jamaican people was second to none. Even down to the singers that greated you in the airport upon arrival. Building to excess has ruined Barbados scenery and the blase attitude towards tourists is deterring people from returning.

  18. Northern Girl,
    You are seeing things from the perspective of yourself, a (presumably British) tourist visiting a Caribbean island and looking for value. I do not fault you for that and well understand your sentiments.

    But try to see things from the perspective of the destination and things look very different. Barbados simply cannot expect to compete with Jamaica (or, even worse, Bali) in terms of giving you “value” for your money, simply because Barbadians earn salaries with far smaller differentials from your own salaries back home and, further, they live in a much more expensive environment than Jamaicans or Balinese.

    So to make you happy with “value” for money, they would have to cut their income to levels that can compete with Bali, a move that would be utterly self-harming, correct?

    Rather, people simply have to accept that certain destinations have moved up the price chain and must maximise other comparative advantages, rather than cheapness. These include infrastructure, productivity and breadth of amenities. But when you visit Barbados you should expect to pay for the accoutrements of life on the same scale that you would expect to pay in Las Vegas, not Bali.

    Anyone looking for Indonesian style value for money would clearly not come to Nassau, and we are very, very happy with that, thank you very much. Why? Because salaries in our tourist industry are at least on a par with those in Orlando or Las Vegas, which hugely benefits us as a host country. Those who come here simply come for different reasons than would take someone to Bali or Mauritius.

    It is time for Barbados to recognise that it has graduated to the same category of destination and stop trying to compete with the likes of St. Lucia. Rather specialise in conventions, large-scale resorts and high end dining etc, many of the ingredients of which are already present in Bim.

    As for all-inclusives? I personally see little benefit in having them, from the point of view of the host destination. Bargain hunters are best off in the cheaper and less developed islands. There is simply no way Barbados’ income levels can continue to grow while trying to stay cheap or attract British tourists, I am afraid. I lived and studied years in Britain and know a little too much about the culture to accept that cheapness is not a deeply ingrained national characteristic.

  19. Carson C. Cadogan

    Can anyone please tell me why ADRIAN has to close his hotel for six months out of every year?

  20. TWWIFOS

    @Carson C. Cadogan – Exactly what I predicted. “As soon as an article is posted, the usual trolls (you know who you are) all line up to take their cheap shots. It’s so predictable and boring.”

    You Carson must be the “head troll”. Nothing positive to offer. Just cheap shots. Your so pathetic.

  21. Tourism is not mathematics where you can solve a problem if you know the constants. There is no constant in Tourism. If Mr. Loveridge was really constructive in his criticism of our industry or objective in his views, he would look at the performance of all Caribbean countries and find out if there is a common factor in their approach to attract long stay visitors and make recommendations as to a model we should follow. Unfortunately his approach is to tear down Barbados and cite contradictory data in another sister island to prove that tourists should avoid Barbados. I wish he would broaden his scope in future and report truthfully on what is going on in tourism in the entire Caribbean and Central America. I will refer him to a few extracts from regional commentaries and the relevant URL addresses which I did this morning on tourism performance in the area.
    (1) KINGSTON, Jamaica, March 17, 2013 – Opposition Spokesman on Tourism, Mr. Edmund Bartlett, is raising concerns about the declining tourist arrivals from some of Jamaica’s key markets. He’s calling for a strategic plan for the recovery of arrivals and earnings lost from the tourism product. Mr. Bartlett says the decline in arrivals from Canada of 14 percent; United Kingdom of 12 percent and flat growth of 0.3 percent from the United States is troubling, particularly when there has been no pick up in the winter season, which is Jamaica’s most important period.
    The entire article can be found at
    URL :- http://www.caricomnews.net/index.php/tourism-travel/travel-travel-news/tourism-news/1952-jamaica-strategic-plan-needed-for-tourism-recovery-says-bartlett

    (2) RITZ CARLTON RUNS FROM JAMAICA, TOURISM IN DECLINE
    Opposition Spokesman on Tourism & Travel Services Development, Mr. Edmund Bartlett, is today expressing regret at news of the imminent closure and loss of over 400 jobs at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Montego Bay.
    Mr. Bartlett described the impending closure as a body blow to Jamaica’s tourism sector, as the Ritz Carlton remained the only internationally acclaimed high-end brand on the island. The implications for our appeal as a destination to the high-yielding demographics in the marketplace is of tremendous concern, as we are yet to determine whether the entity that will replace the Ritz will fit the profile and be of equal stature.
    Mr. Bartlett, who is Member of Parliament for East Central St. James, where the property is situated, went on to question the fate of the over 400 workers employed to the Hotel.
    URL:- http://delanoseiv.wordpress.com/2013/05/09/ritz-carlton-runs-from-jamaica-tourism-in-decline/

    (3)
    JHTA forecasts decline in tourist arrival for winter season 7:12 am, Thu March 14, 2013
    It is being forecast that Jamaica will record a decline in arrivals during the current winter tourist season.The outlook has come from the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA) which on Wednesday said its members have so far seen mixed results.Evelyn Smith, president of the Association, said this is a continuation of last year’s trend where arrivals were down for winter and up during summer:“We have had members who have reported that they have had a good winter, some who have had about average – on par with previous years – and others who have indicated that that they have experienced a decline. So it had been mixed. The proof is in the final pudding, in terms of what the final overall numbers for Jamaica indicate. I think we are only at the stage of preliminary, I would suspect though for preliminary arrivals we will end up being down”, said Ms. Smith.

    URL :- http://rjrnewsonline.com/business/jhta-forecasts-decline-in-tourist-arrival-for-winter-season

    (4) Quoting from the Bahamas website B2B.COM , stop over visitors’ numbers are down 7.2 % . The first paragraph reads quote ‘The all-important stopovers market has seen its share of total visitors to the Bahamas drop by seven percentage points since the financial crisis, reaching the point where it accounts for just one out of every four tourists.
    URL :- http://www.bahamasb2b.com/news/2013/05/stopover-visitors-down-7-36212.html

    (5) According to the Bahamas news medium Tribune 242, there was a slump in air arrivals in the first quarter of 2013.
    URL:-
    http://www.tribune242.com/news/2013/may/06/air-arrivals-slump-34-in-2013-q1/

    (6) Belize tourists numbers are up while prices are coming down
    URL:-
    http://belize-travel-blog.chaacreek.com/2013/04/belize-tourist-numbers-up-prices-are-down-at-chaa-creek/

    (7) Despite the drug war violence, U.S. tourists are still likelier to visit Mexico than any other country on the planet
    URL :- http://www.forbes.com/sites/nathanielparishflannery/2013/03/18/is-drugwar-violence-scaring-away-mexicos-spring-break-tourists/

  22. barbarees

    @bahamared
    Your country ,along with St. Lucia, Jamaica , Antigua and most recently Grenda get , is marketed daily at peak time by Sandals International. Unfortunately the lazy group which Mr. Loveridge represents, is waiting for the Government of Barbados to market them. Have you ever seen anything on prime time tv on the USA networks, sponsored by any hotel or group of hotels promoting Barbados as the ideal tourist destination?

    JW

  23. barbarees

    Here are some news items that should interest Mr. Loveridge and company

    (1) KINGSTON, Jamaica, March 17, 2013 – Opposition Spokesman on Tourism, Mr. Edmund Bartlett, is raising concerns about the declining tourist arrivals from some of Jamaica’s key markets. He’s calling for a strategic plan for the recovery of arrivals and earnings lost from the tourism product. Mr. Bartlett says the decline in arrivals from Canada of 14 percent; United Kingdom of 12 percent and flat growth of 0.3 percent from the United States is troubling, particularly when there has been no pick up in the winter season, which is Jamaica’s most important period.
    The entire article can be found at
    URL :- http://www.caricomnews.net/index.php/tourism-travel/travel-travel-news/tourism-news/1952-jamaica-strategic-plan-needed-for-tourism-recovery-says-bartlett

    (2) RITZ CARLTON RUNS FROM JAMAICA, TOURISM IN DECLINE
    Opposition Spokesman on Tourism & Travel Services Development, Mr. Edmund Bartlett, is today expressing regret at news of the imminent closure and loss of over 400 jobs at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Montego Bay.
    Mr. Bartlett described the impending closure as a body blow to Jamaica’s tourism sector, as the Ritz Carlton remained the only internationally acclaimed high-end brand on the island. The implications for our appeal as a destination to the high-yielding demographics in the marketplace is of tremendous concern, as we are yet to determine whether the entity that will replace the Ritz will fit the profile and be of equal stature.
    Mr. Bartlett, who is Member of Parliament for East Central St. James, where the property is situated, went on to question the fate of the over 400 workers employed to the Hotel.
    URL:- http://delanoseiv.wordpress.com/2013/05/09/ritz-carlton-runs-from-jamaica-tourism-in-decline/

    (3)
    JHTA forecasts decline in tourist arrival for winter season 7:12 am, Thu March 14, 2013
    It is being forecast that Jamaica will record a decline in arrivals during the current winter tourist season.The outlook has come from the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA) which on Wednesday said its members have so far seen mixed results.Evelyn Smith, president of the Association, said this is a continuation of last year’s trend where arrivals were down for winter and up during summer:“We have had members who have reported that they have had a good winter, some who have had about average – on par with previous years – and others who have indicated that that they have experienced a decline. So it had been mixed. The proof is in the final pudding, in terms of what the final overall numbers for Jamaica indicate. I think we are only at the stage of preliminary, I would suspect though for preliminary arrivals we will end up being down”, said Ms. Smith.

    URL :- http://rjrnewsonline.com/business/jhta-forecasts-decline-in-tourist-arrival-for-winter-season

    (4) Quoting from the Bahamas website B2B.COM , stop over visitors’ numbers are down 7.2 % . The first paragraph reads quote ‘The all-important stopovers market has seen its share of total visitors to the Bahamas drop by seven percentage points since the financial crisis, reaching the point where it accounts for just one out of every four tourists.
    URL :- http://www.bahamasb2b.com/news/2013/05/stopover-visitors-down-7-36212.html

    (5) According to the Bahamas news medium Tribune 242, there was a slump in air arrivals in the first quarter of 2013.
    URL:-
    http://www.tribune242.com/news/2013/may/06/air-arrivals-slump-34-in-2013-q1/

    (6) Belize tourists numbers are up while prices are coming down
    URL:-
    http://belize-travel-blog.chaacreek.com/2013/04/belize-tourist-numbers-up-prices-are-down-at-chaa-creek/

    (7) Despite the drug war violence, U.S. tourists are still likelier to visit Mexico than any other country on the planet
    URL :- http://www.forbes.com/sites/nathanielparishflannery/2013/03/18/is-drugwar-violence-scaring-away-mexicos-spring-break-tourists/

  24. MoneyBrain

    @barbarees
    Your knowledge of Marketing appears very limited!

    HINT ——ever heard about SCALE/ SIZE? Sandals is a very large Brand spanning several countries by your own admission!

    The role of the Bdos Govt and Tourist Board is to POOL RESOURCES and Promote Bim with the CORRECT PROFITABLE STRATEGY!

    Which entity benefits MOST from the Tourist Industry? BIM’s GOVT via Revenue!

  25. barbarees

    @moneybrain
    Do the Governments of Jamaica, St. Lucia, Bahamas, Antigua and Grenada subscribe to to the payment for those Sandals adverstisements at peak time on US networks?

  26. MoneyBrain

    @Barbarees
    Irrelevant!

    Those Govts may contribute, can you say that they DONT?

  27. barbarees

    @Moneybrain
    Do you really understand the meaning of the word ”irrelevant”? Do you understand that a question can’t answer a question? I hope you aren’t a member of the BHTA.

  28. Well Well.

    Moneybrain…………….you know i am your sweet woman, but in this instance and for the years that the government in Bim for one reason or another have been unable to competently or efficiently do any major or successful marketing of the island, don’t you think it then fell to the likes of BHTA (whom i always believe have an ulterior motive that does not and will never benefit the island as a whole) along with the hotel owners to do their own successful worldwide marketing, Doyle at Crane, Sandy Lane, Fairmont Royal Pavilion, Royal Westmoreland and a handful of others do not sit and wait for government, neither does Butch Stewart in Jamaica nor apparently the players in St. Lucia or Grenada either for that matter, because their governments don’t have the money from what i am told, therefore the hoteliers need to get off their rumps and market.

  29. barbarees

    Every week Mr. Loveridge does a a comparative check betwen Barbados’ performance as a tourist destination and St.Lucia’s. Óne would believe that they are the only two countries in the Caribbean and Latin America. He continues to highlight St.Lucia’s growth and Barbados’ decline. I have no problem with that fact but why doesn’t he include Jamaica, Bahamas and Santo Domingo in his comparisons. Does he know that there was a decline in tourist arrivals for the first quarter of the year in Jamaiaica?

    I now quote from the JHTA
    ‘In May, total number of arrivals from both sources (long stay arrivals and cruise ship arrivals) was 230,392 passengers. This is the smallest number recorded for the combine total since the start of the calendar year. May’s total represents a 16% decline from April’s 272,891 arrivals and a 36% decline when compared to 361,131 in March. When compared to the corresponding period in 2012, the overall total number of visitors has decreased by 7% however it has increased by 3% over 2011′s 224,162 passengers.
    Long stay arrivals for the month of May 160,785 is also the lowest number recorded for this category since the start of the year. Although the number represents a 6% decline from April, it represents a slight 2% over May 2012 and an even higher 10% over May 2011′s 146,583 arrivals. Tourism Minister Hon. Dr. Wykeham McNeill in making his contribution to the 2013/14 Sectoral Debate in the House on July 2, under the theme: ‘A Sector for the People: Making Tourism for Us All’ said that based on market research Jamaica’s 2013 Summer Season (May marks the start of the Summer Season) prospects are bright for stop over arrivals.
    The total number of cruise ship arrivals in May was 69,607 which represents a 30% decline from the 101,261 in April and a 23% decline when compared to the corresponding period in 2012. Another low since the start of the year.
    The industry is categorized by two seasons Winter and Summer, the Summer season is usually the slowest of the two. Hence, the numbers recorded for the start of the season- May are indicative of that. However during the remaining months of the season, arrivals are expected to improve. Ends Quote

    And now a report from Bahamas
    Air arrivals to the Bahamas declined by 3.4 per cent year-over-year for the 2013 first quarter, with both New Providence and Grand Bahama experiencing a decline in the key stopover visitor segment.
    #The Central Bank of the Bahamas’ report on monthly economic developments for March said that while total visitor arrivals grew by 3.3 per cent to 1.75 million for the first three months of 2013, this resulted entirely from an increase in cruise passengers and other seaborne tourists.
    #While the increase in cruise visitors is welcome, their per capita spending – especially in Nassau and Freeport – is in the high two to low three figures. In contrast, land-based stopover visitors typically spend more than $1,000 per head, and their business is responsible for maintaining the hotel industry as the Bahamas’ largest private sector employer.

    Finally Dominican Republic
    First quarter 2013 tourist arrivals in the Dominican Republic fell by .64 percent compared with the same period in 2012, according to statistics published this week by the Central Bank of the Dominican Republic. Tourist arrivals totaled 1.348 million between January and March of 2013, compared with 1.358 million in the first quarter of 2012, a drop of less than one percent.

    Tourism is not mathematics where you can solve a problem if you know the constants. There is no constant in Tourism. If Mr. Loveridge was really constructive in his criticism of our industry or objective in his views, he would look at the performance of all Caribbean countries and find out if there is a common factor in their approach to attract long stay visitors and make recommendations as to a model we should follow. Unfortunately his approach is to tear down Barbados and cite contradictory data in another sister island to prove that tourists should avoid Barbados. I wish he would broaden his scope in future and report truthfully on what is going on in tourism in the entire Caribbean and Central America.

  30. @barbarees

    In the case of the Bahamas, the government through the ministry of tourism heavily subsidises all advertising. Sandals is a somewhat small player in the Bahamian tourism industry, but those large hotels, like Atlantis, that do their own advertising, generally promote themselves rather than the destination. Many Americans who visit Atlantis in fact do not realise that it is in a foreign country until they get there!!!

    I would personally not advise Barbados to wish too much for a sandals, as the all-inclusive model has minimal impact. Only in a place like Exuma (with a population of 7,000) does Sandals play any dominant role. On Cable Beach it has far less spending impact than the Sheraton or the rising giant Baha Mar.

    I feel that destination advertising has only so much impact in a place like The Bahamas, since most tourists really do not come for the destination, but the specific property itself. Besides, Americans on the east coast are sufficiently acquainted with the destination already.

  31. barbarees

    @Bahamared
    Thanks for your input.

  32. @barbarees

    You are very right that it is not just Bim struggling with the current tourist market. It is in fact worldwide.

    Here in the Bahamas, the figures for this year to date may be a little misleading though, since much room stock is out of operation due to construction etc. In fact more than 2,000 rooms are currently under construction and should see a large upswing in the next year or so.

    I also agree that you cannot compare mature destinations with places like St. Lucia or Dominica. It is more helpful and instructive to compare Nassau with Orlando, Florida.

  33. Adrian Loveridge

    Barbarees,

    If you REALLY had followed by writings, you will seen quite clearly that I responding to a comment made by our Minister of Tourism and carried in 28th June 2013 edition of The Barbados Advocate. He was NOT referring to Jamaica, the Bahamas, the Dominican Republic, but St. LUCIA.
    I repeat his words ‘ If we had to be perfectly honest, St. Lucia is at least 30 years behind Barbados in terms of tourism……that’s the reality’.

    Sad, that you chose to distort the issue and mislead people.

  34. barbarees

    @Loveridge

    I don’t knowwhat are your motives but you and some of the South Coast hoteliers are behaving like the cane farmers association of the 70’s when Tom Adams was Prime Minister. They got open cheques to resuscitate a dying sugar industry and they blew it while making false claims on the money which they were. spending. They planted sugar cane on the periphery of the canefields and cash crops on the inside. Government didn’t get a cent from the cash crops but instead the farmers sent their families on summer holidays to Europe, bought everything new for the houshold and changed their cars annually. The poor tax payers had to foot those bills till Tom Adams got wind of what they were doing and made them account for every cent they received from Government. I would like the readers of this Blog and any Blog to which Mr. Loveridge writes columns, to know that he does not speak for all of the Barbados hoteliers. Go on the Internet and you would see hotels like Sandy Lane , the Crane and others which do not operate cap-in-hand, and do everything to promote Barbados as a tourist destination.

  35. barbarees

    @ Adrian

    I didn’t know that you were a politician. I would have expected that the Opposition Pary would be criticizing the Government every week for the comment. I cited a case of the Jamaica Shadow Minister of Tourism commenting on the decline in the numbers of tourist arrivals in an earlier posting. No where in his criticism did he try to pull down Jamaica. I thought that yhour job would be one of encouraging tourists to visit our lovely island rather than advising Brits not to come to Barbados until the Minister clarify some statement he made at a press briefing. You are what I would call a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Your pretend to be sincere at the start of your columns but end up tring to destroy the tourist industry.

  36. Adrian Loveridge

    Barbarees,

    When you have a moment please study CAREFULLY the list of hotels who received ‘cap in hand’ TIRF taxpayer hand-outs. Maybe you will apologise then and make a special mention that you did find Peach and Quiet on that list.

  37. barbarees

    @ Adrian

    I know the ones on whose behalf you write the columns.

  38. barbarees

    @Adrian
    I give you the benefit of the doubt of not knowing whom you are respresenting. For your information , some of tghem are the descendants of the old plantocracy which tricked or attempted to trick Tom Adams and the Bajan people in the 70’s. Their modus operandi has not changed.

  39. Niren

    @barbarees you go. I’m behind you 100%. I’m sick of Loveridge’s harking every week and his attempts at single handedly trying to pull down Barbados. Exactly what is his beef anyway? I thought that a few years back there was a big hoopla about Peach and Quiet being sold, staff and all? Is Loveridge and his wife still the owners?

  40. MoneyBrain

    @Babarbarees
    You like you have a problem with grammar too!

    Why are you attempting to compare a very large Chain, intent on Branding themselves and that has locations in many Nations with various smaller entities from one Nation?

  41. Well Well.

    Barbarees said:

    “I give you the benefit of the doubt of not knowing whom you are respresenting. For your information , some of tghem are the descendants of the old plantocracy which tricked or attempted to trick Tom Adams and the Bajan people in the 70′s. Their modus operandi has not changed.”
    __________________________________________________

    They are still attempting to run their con game on the taxpayers and government on the island, those who have been doing it before Adrian went to Barbados, it worked so well for them for decades they believe they can continue it indefinitely, i suggest they give up the scam and go look for some honest work like garbage collectors, maids, servants, police, home healthcare workers, cleaners, babysitters, gardeners, clean the beaches and the airport etc, etc, this is an new era. That is assuming they want to continue to eat going forward.

  42. @Barbarees,

    Thanks for the history lessons. When I first visited Barbados as a child in the summer of 1983 I had the honour of meeting the late Mr Adams at my uncle’s house in St. Michael. Seemed like a decent, somewhat charismatic chap. Did not know all that intricate history about the cane farmers et al, though. Very interesting.

    But I do think it is being a little hard on Adrian to target his comments as anti-Bajan, especially since he seems to devote so much of his time and energy making recommendations that, if not just Barbados, then the wider region can possibly learn from.

    The opinions I disagree with most on here are those who argue that Barbados should react to the present lacklustre state of its tourist industry by trying to match St. Lucia etc. in terms of price. Barbados needs to keep moving on up the price chain (like the Jacksons) and when the world economy revives it will be well placed to outpace all of the lesser antilles on account of its greater concentration of amenities.

  43. MoneyBrain

    @barbarees
    The BHTA would be very pleased to have a person with my experience assisting with Marketing/ Advertising Strategy!

    Very few Bajans have worked in the most sophisticated Advertising Agencies like McCann Erickson and Young &Rubicam. Indeed I assisted in the original proposal to garner the Jamaica Tourism Account while at Y&R in Toronto 32 years ago.

    Barbados made a decision more than 35 yrs ago to discourage the large Hotel Chains. Hence where is Hyatt, Sheraton, Four Seasons, Quality/ Comfort, et al (Holiday Inn and Marriot came and went) Those decisions have consequences of both varieties.

  44. Adrian Loveridge

    Well, Well,
    points out those hotels that successfully market themselves, but fails to tell you that that at least of the three hotels he uses as an example, were among the biggest recipients of TIRF (Grant) taxpayers monies:

    27 May 2009
    Royal Westmoreland
    $285,546.71

    27 May 2009
    The Crane
    $500,108.50

    Sandy Lane Hotel
    27 May 2009
    $1,179,878.96
    18 November 2009
    $780,067.21

    So successful, they needed free money.
    Again, you will not find P&Q on the list. We have done it all ourselves.

  45. Well Well.

    Adrain…………………i am very aware that you are more or less a new kid on the block and trying to highlight inadequacies, i am aware you are a one man show, many of the others are the real culprits.

  46. yatinkiteasy

    If one says the streets of Bridgetown are filthy and smell of human urine, and that in a 200 yard walk one is accosted by beggars, and if one says on the beaches and in St Lawrence Gap drug dealers approach every tourist, with family or not, would that person be accused of trying to pull down Barbados?… Bajans just don`t like to hear the truth, especially if it comes from a “furener”.
    Forget Adrian…ignore him if you wish, but the question still remains…Why is St Lucia doing so much better than Barbados in visitor arrivals?

  47. MoneyBrain

    @WW
    All Govts almost everywhere should really stay far from businesses since their track record in such/ all endeavours is somewhat poor. However, when Govts Tax heavily and know that the Tourist Industry is critical to the Island and Govt Revenue then they should be involved where financing is concerned and making sure the Strategies fit the Objectives.

    Please note that advertising Bdos is not only about Tourism, Bim the Brand also has a positive effect on other Business sectors like manufacturing, Administrative Services, OffShore etc. Therefore you are communicating a certain level of sophistication and high quality.

  48. Well Well.

    Moneybrain:

    I do understand your input, the government has no money to invest, there is nothing left, they have done as much as they can and have been doing so for many years, it’s time for the other players involved to hold some weight, do their own marketing, that does not require millions of dollars these days, the internet baby, don’t tell me they too who have made so much money over the many decades of tourism are now also broke cause if they are, more the reason for them to find other employment, the taxpayers have nothing left, you know the saying, you cannot get blood from stone. The government can no longer supplement anything, they need to recover.

  49. Robert Ross

    The post writer’s thesis is predicated upon a simple premise – that all the Caribbean territories offer little more than sea and sand. In his view we are better at packaging that than has been suggested. If his premise is correct the issue becomes what we can offer which goes beyond that. Is it? And if it is, what can we offer?.

  50. @Robert Ross

    It is a common mistake to see tourist destinations simply as offering passive attractions (such as the climate, beaches etc.). In fact, the industry is far more dynamic and responsive to policy initiatives than that. Macau is a destination because it made itself a destination and remains good at it. The same can be said of Las Vegas, which was once a desert.
    Likewise, the Caribbean region (which is actually extremely diverse) has seen specialisations among the various destinations as they respond to trends and maximise on their particular comparative advantages, which include amenities, infrastructure, ancillary services etc.
    Unfortunately, too often local policymakers leave it to large private (often foreign) operators to lead this process. Governments should employ all resources, from urban planners to local industry, to cut out and define the niche that suits them as a destination.

    Hence, ecotourism in places like Andros or Dominica, while large scale resorts and casinos dominate in more developed centres. It is actually a far more dynamic industry than it is often given credit for.

  51. @Barbarees

    Further to your earlier enquiry about govt. payment for Sandals adverts, this story just came out in the Nassau Guardian today, which outlines government support for a variety of companies’ promotions here.

    http://www.thenassauguardian.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=40965&Itemid=2

  52. MoneyBrain

    barbarees
    Looks like my question was/ is VALID!

  53. barbarees

    @Moneybrain
    You answered a question with a question. Had you said ”yeah, nay or I do not know”, then you would have answered my question. Anyhow that is by the way. We could continue what is developing into an intersting debate.. Thanks for your input.

  54. barbarees

    @bahamared
    Sorry couldn’t get back to you before.. Went to a dear friend’s funeral. Your input has been very much appreciated. However the article exposes a lot of quid pro quobetween Government and the tourism sector . If there is full transparency, I have no problem with the arrangements. I am sure that there are similar arrangements in the tourist industry in Barbados and some hotels are on board with the Government strategies but on the other hand there are others on the South Coast which want Government to give them an open cheque. They are ones who week after week promote the argument that if we can’t get what we want , then nobody will get anything since we will kill the industry”. As I said before,some of them are descendants of the plantocracy which have behaved similarly in the sugar industry

  55. MoneyBrain

    @barbarees
    One of the many problems Governments have is a lack of proper monitoring and control of expenditure. You refer to a problems with The Plantocracy, on which you may want to provide more detail.

    Certainly I saw payments made by the Bdos Govt to certain Tourism players a while back and some of the recipient organisations were a little suspicous ie an Accounting firm not owned by any former Plantocrats.

  56. barbarees

    @Moneybrain
    I would be the first to admit that Governments are hoodwinked by members of all organizations. However I know of two hotels on the South Coast which are owned by the same people to whom I referred earlier. They tricked two adminstrations into investing millions of dollars and today all they have to show for it are two run-down unoccupied properties. The openly corrupt hoteliers are the ones who operate on the South Coast. The less corrupt ones can be found any where.

  57. MoneyBrain

    @barbarees
    I dont know the specifics of which you speak but I do know the Govt should never own hotel operations. Owning the physical plant of the Hilton (or wherever) is potentially justifiable but never day to day operations.

    Additionally, any clever businessman is going to seek the highest price when selling and obviously the purchaser has to know the business well enough to negotiate fair value. Governments should never be involved in such activity. Governments have a major flaw in that it is NOT their money and so they tend to be very loosey goosey with the people’s purse.

    Wastage of $$$$$ is an unspoken Govt MANTRA!

  58. barbarees

    @Moneybrain
    We are on the same line of the same chapter of the same page and of the same book.

  59. Rastaman

    @barbarees : same page should come before same chapter 🙂 (smile)

  60. repeat visitor

    i can understand why many people take offence at what adrian has to say: it’s always like that in a small place where people know too much about each other to think about the issues. looking at the large picture…i agree with him…although it’s not always nice to agree…and i think getting people in barbados talking and thinking is worth any annoyance his comments may cause. fact is: tourism in barbados is in trouble as far as the canadian market is concerned. most people i know think it’s the bahamas.

  61. @repeat visitor

    Interestingly, I am from the Bahamas and, while at university in the UK, grew tired of explaining to people there that NO, I did not say Barbados, but the Ba-Ha-Mas. Brits seem to have a blind-spot as to the Bahamas, knowing a lot more about Barbados. I imagine the reverse to be true for Canadians because of proximity to the North American market (just over 2 hours from Toronto) and the influence of US popular culture and television, which gives the Bahamas wide exposure. I do not think it reflects any failing in the Barbados tourist product.

  62. barbarees

    @bahamared
    You have said a mouthful.Take a bow. Barbados was referred to as ”Little England”‘ in the past. The Principals of the Secondary Schoos were English. The surgeons at the main hospital were English, the Permanent Secretaries were English, the Chief of Police was English, most of the sugar plantations were English owned, the hotels were english owned, the Anglican Church priests and the bishops were English, name it and it was headed by the English. No wonder over the years our main source of visitors to the island was the UK. As I said in an earlier posting, there is no constant in tourism. The old saying “Today is your day, tomorrow is miné” holds true for tourism. The Dominican Republic has shifted from a sugar dependant economy to a tourist dependant economy and in 20 years or less, is attracting millions to their shores. I have been there at least 5 times in the past three years and things don’t look good for the entire Caribbean in another two years,if their cruise ship and long stay visitors continue to grow exponentially. When their cruise terminal at Amber Cove is completed, even Bahamas” tourist numbers will decrease.

  63. barbarees

    @Rastaman
    Sorry didn’t respond before. Man yuh know yuh right. . lol. Sometimes the fingers think for you instead of the head.

  64. @barbarees

    I would not worry about the DR catching up. they are simply in a different game. In the Bahamas we certainly would not be harmed by a decrease in cruise numbers, as spending per cruise visitor is tiny and is not something that concerns us much.

    The Bahamas will always be OK because it continues to advance up the value chain, having now left behind places like the DR which continue to look for pure numbers, rather than value.

    Again, our competition is Las Vegas and Orlando, not the Dominican Republic.

  65. The Watcher

    I like it!
    I LOVE it!
    You guys are really getting a healthy and vibrant debate gong here. This is good!
    I am no fan of Adrian and his support for this failing tourism product. I understand that as a business owner and participant in the tourism sector he has a vested interest to see it be profitable. But I keep saying this same thing all the time. “Get the rid of tourism and put my tax dollars into technology investments”. This is the direction of the world today. We trade in and utilize Information as the “new Currency” He who holds the information and can use it effectively, rules the roost!
    We Barbadians send people to Singapore all the time to see how they(the Citizens of that country) do things only for these money wasting delegations to return and complain how Singapore is not a democracy and they way in which they implement their successes cant be achieved by Barbados because of their governance model as compared to ours. But I guess when we send folk over to Singapore, we’re just helping them derive profits from their tourism product.
    Adrian, I will give you this much for whatever it is worth. But let me again say this emphatically! Tourism is a failure, has failed and will continue to fail! Get the rid of it! But I will give you my full defense here with respect to the warnings that you have continually issued to Barbados regarding the impending implosion of the tourism industry. We, Barbadians have totally lost sight of the Barrow vision of an educated society. When Mr. Barrow envisioned education for the masses, it was so that we wouldn’t be Socially and Mentally enslaved in our march to progress. He didn’t make the sacrifices that he made to have us behave like little Oligarchs and Demigods. To your credit Adrian, we do not like to listen, think that we know it all, believe we don’t make mistakes, cant apologize when we are clearly wrong and are abhorrent to change! So, we keep comparing what we have with what others don’t have or what we think we have that is superior to theirs.
    We can keep beating up on Adrian for telling the truth and try to detract from what he says by implying that he has an agenda, whatever that agenda may be.
    I will tell you all this, while Barrow did a wonderful thing for Barbados, I often find myself wishing in recent times that he hadn’t gone all out to see that the masses of you clowns were educated. I extrapolate that the outcome had he kept the accepted doctrine of the day going would have been those who were the cream, would have risen to the top like creme does and would have by their examples helped others who were inclined in similar directions, and of like-minded spirits to to also rise and take leadership roles.
    The remainder of you esteemed members of the Untaminch, Prolitariat and Peanut-Gallery would have stayed on the plantation until you figured a way off!
    No Apologies!

  66. MoneyBrain

    @Watchie
    Singapore is an excellent model in terms of National strategy. Mr Lee and his cohort decided that the Benevolent Dictatorship Model masquerading as a Democracy was the correct Political method because of the Communist threat both externally emanating from the conflicts in Vietnam, Cambodoia etc which was moving into Southern Thailand AND immigrant Chinese in Singapore.

    What was obvious to this brilliant Singapore Leadership Group was that Communism would never work so STAMP IT OUT. Leave no opening. They appreciated that an overpopulated island with no resources besides its People and a reputation for being an Entrepot had to focus intently on Educating its resource/ asset—people.

    The problem with Democracy in Bim, USA, UK etc is that it has evolved into who can BUY more votes with $$$$$, encourage laziness/ dependency, Tax success, and NOT what strategy must be adhered to for long term, sustained victory for all.

    Tourism strategy has been wrong for years, aiming far too low at “hamburger and a Coke” tourists when the correct strategy in a small, higher cost island should have focused mainly on upper middle income to upper crust tourists who provide more profit per capita.

    You are right to recommend Tech although Bim did not create the right environment when we had the opportunity. Firstly, my brother in law was a manager of an American Tech firm making circuit boards in the early 1970s and productivity was horrible compared with places in Asia. Therefore, such firms left Bim in short order. Secondly, the Govt made a mistake when they did not play ball with Intel and lost 900+ jobs in the late 1970s. They should have created an excellently tailored environment and comprehensive strategy where Tech was concerned.

    Singapore’s advantage in Education (and other sectors) benefited from the Benevolent Dictatorship in that no BS was tolerated. Also we must not neglect to address the Sociological differences between the two Islands ie racial make-up, history of slavery etc. Bim of the late 1960s- 1970s went through a phase where the prevalent attitude was that we own the Island now, we could do what we like and the discipline aspects of British colonialism were to be neglected./ rejected. Standards dropped in Education and even top Schools like HC became far more mediocre and very little could be accomplished in disciplining the system—-NOT so in Singapore. The Education system in Singapore DEMANDED adherence to strict Top Quality standards in every respect.(true in other sectors as well)

    Bim has performed better than many Emerging/ Developing Countries BUT has totally underperformed what it was / is capable of. I would have never expected to attain the absolute levels of Singapore for the simple reason that Bajans would never sacrifice that much fun, relaxation, recreation etc as Singaporeans under normal circumstances, that would take a somewhat brutal Dictatorship.

  67. @money brain

    You are largely right in your observations about Singapore and the need to keep away from “hamburger and coke” tourists to achieve success in a high cost small island. But I do not understand why you slam tourism as a whole. Certainly Singapore loves tourism and has a very successful tourist product.

    It is through tourism that Bim, like my country, has managed to achieve an enviable level of development. Only the danger is when we become complacent with the tourist industry and expect to be passive participants, competing with places like Mauritius and Bali, just because they have similar beaches / weather etc. Rather, high cost destinations must refine our tourist product to produce higher yields per visitor. This is true of Paris, Singapore, Las Vegas as much as for Nassau or Barbados.

    Do not scorn tourism. It is a vital service industry that has way more to deliver in terms of development than manufacturing or any secondary industry. It has done more to delivery genuine development than any other single industry that comes to mind.

  68. MoneyBrain

    @Bahamared
    I believe you have mixed me up with The Watcher!

  69. @MoneyBrain,

    Yes, indeed you are right.

  70. barbarees

    @bahamared/watcher/moneybrain

    Off to a meeting. Will chat you up when return. Oh how I love this debate

  71. 60

    @watchie
    It is most unfortunate that you should make a statement to the erred in educating the masses. I can understand why you support Adrian. Not knowing who you are, I would hazard a guess that you belong to the privileged few of yesteryear or a descendant thereof. It is 2013. You can’t turn back the clock of progress. You and Adrian had your day. Never in your lifetime or his will you or he be the decision makers of Barbados. You are an admirer of a country which used modern day slave trade to become one of the richest countries in the world. That ended in 1833 in Barbados much to your ancestors regret.

  72. @watchie
    It is most unfortunate that you should make a statement to the erred in educating the masses. I can understand why you support Adrian. Not knowing who you are, I would hazard a guess that you belong to the privileged few of yesteryear or a descendant thereof. It is 2013. You can’t turn back the clock of progress. You and Adrian had your day. Never in your lifetime or his will you or he be the decision makers of Barbados. You are an admirer of a country which used modern day slave trade to become one of the richest countries in the world. That ended in 1833 in Barbados much to your ancestors regret.

  73. @Watchie
    The earlier post should read ”It is most unfortunate that you should make a statement that Barrow erred in educating the masses”

  74. Singapore model can’t be followed by any other country in the world. If it were that easy, Germany, France, the UK, USA etc. would be on board long ago. The developed countries whose economies are performing poorly know all about the technologies from which Singapore is benefiting. Singapore didn’t reach this level of success overnight. Although Singapore billed itself as a free-enterprise economy, the economic role of government was pervasive. As governing body for both the nation and the city, the government was responsible for planning and budgeting for everything from international finance to trash collection. The government owned, controlled, regulated, or allocated land, labor, and capital resources. It set or influenced many of the prices on which private investors based business calculations and investment decisions.

  75. @bahamared

    I appreciate your measured and sober comments. Your country and mine lack the resources which most countries have . However we have done well to reach the level at which we are. To understand the venom that people like Watchie used, I would have to give you a history of Barbados. From 1627 till 1961, the British ruled Barbados., The likes of Watchie could not bring themselves to the point where their children and the masses would be rubbing shoulders at the secondary schools, and many of them migrated to Australia and New Zealand where they became 2nd and third class citizens. That’s why Watchie referred to us as clowns. They wanted Barbadians to be working in their canefields all their lives without proper pay while they and their offspring jetted off to UK for their holidays with the money earned by the sweat of the brows of the masses. They hated the guts of the Prime Minister at the Time Errol Barrow. Ignore anything good that Watchie and company say about Barrow. Unfortunately for them Barbadians are a resilient lot and will ride out this recession as they rode out that period after they took their money out of the country.

  76. MoneyBrain

    @Barbarees
    Education is obviously the cornerstone for almost any Nation and especially a small one like Bim. However, the definition of Education is critical. Here in Toronto we have probably the highest density of Tertiary graduates on Earth BUT 20+% of University grads go on to Community College to learn something to apply in a career. Ontario, for example, does NOT need 10,000 Sociologists every year! Bim cant afford to spend money twice! So we have to develop Comprehensive strategies that link Tertiary Education to our Economic Development Plan. In my opinion once we identify an area in which we could adequately progress eg Tech of some sort, then the Education Plan must be in sync.

    Singapore cant be totally copied but they provide proof that a small island with excellent leadership can succeed to the highest levels. Yes that leadership was and is a Benevolent Dictatorship, which also proves that Democracy is a great concept that has underperformed historically and is now doing so in spades in Europe, Nth America and islands like Bim where the Pols are just keen to fight each other, behave in corrupt fashion, waste the public purse, fail to plan properly,etc. Many countries require serious Political Reform.

  77. @Moneybrain
    Singapore doesn’t depend entirely on technology to drive its economy. It has a very healthy tourism industry which attracted over 14.5 million visitors in 2012. They offer everything a tourist could want to make the person happy. Just mention the word Casino in Barbdos and you are doomed for life as a politician.
    Singapore’s is bordered by the Malacca strait which links the Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean. From an economic and strategic perspective it is one of the most important shipping lanes in the world.About a quarter of all oil carried by sea passes through the strait, mainly from Persian Gulf suppliers to Asian markets such as China, Japan, and South Korea. Singapore gets billions of dollars in revenue from port charges and other charges resulting from ships using the straight.
    As you know, no journalist can live in Singapore and criticize the manner in which the country is being administered. However during the last elections in Barbados there was talk about Barbados copying the Singapore Economic Model and I searched the Internet up and down to find someone who would give diffefrent from the propaganda put out by the Singapore Government. I was lucky to read the views of a dissident and came up with the following which I share with you now.
    http://singaporedissident.blogspot.com/2010/10/singaporeans-4th-richest-simply-baloney.html
    The two paragraphs that left me reeling in laughter were quote

    (1)‘’Of course there are some multi multi millionaires and billionaires money launderers, drug runners from Burma and Indonesian embezzlers who have stacked their ill gotten gains in Singapore. These people are not just the 4th richest in the world but simply the richest.’’
    (2) I am not sure if the late Pablo Escobar, Colombian drug lord ever applied for permanent residence in Singapore, but if he did, I am sure with his money, millions of it, Lee Kuan Yew would have managed to claim that Singapore is not just 4th richest but the 3rd or even the richest country in the world.

    As I said before, if the Singapore model was that easy to follow, the industrialized countries of the world would have been on board long ago.

  78. MoneyBrain

    @barbarees
    I have travelled to Singapore on 10 occasions since 1983 and have spent more than 6 months of my life there. My most recent trip was 3 weeks in Dec 2012. The article in your link is written by someone that is purposely neglecting to concede a major point which is that Singapore is a small island, approx 50% bigger than Bim, with 5mn people.

    The transportation system is absolutely excellent and everything is designed to discourage car ownership. All Asians tend to live in relatively small flats and in Singapore they had to go high rise as land is very limited. I have been in these Govt Housing Developments and indeed they typically have small restaurant stalls on the ground level offering the various types of ethnic cuisine ie Chinese of several types, Malay, Indian, Indonesian etc.
    We go there to eat daily, even though my wife’s family are successful management/ professional types living in the more exclusive homes.

    The standard of living of the bottom half is much higher than Bim/ Cbean BUT for obvious reasons of limited space could never be as high as Canada or Australia. However, many parts of the US are far dirtier, more violent/ dangerous, poorer than Singapore. Life in the UK and much of Europe is not any better. Singaporeans hate the cold weather just like Bajans do!

    The Bottomline is that Singapore does have the advantage of strategic location as an Entrepot with its benefits, however, there is much to be learnt or certainly executed by Bajan leadership from the Singapore example with special emphasis on Education, Tourism et al.

    To the dissident writer I agree that Singaporeans are somewhat brainwashed BUT at least there is freedom to exit the country like he recommends to his family the same can not be said for many countries.

  79. @MoneyBrain

    I have not been to Singapore, but must doubt your assertion that the standard of living there is higher than the Caribbean. Certainly I would not call the standard of living of Japan or the UK (in both of which places I spend a lot of time) higher than here. It all depends on what you call “standard of living” I guess. But if you gave every Bahamian the right to move to Singapore and vice versa, the traffic would, I would assure you, all be one way! (and that way is not eastward).

    The absence of living space alone would make most people I know here find life in a place like Singapore objectionable. I wonder how many of them even have their own green spaces or gardens (as even the poorest here do).

    I guess the best way of judging these things is by immigration patterns. If you asked any Bahamian if he wanted to move to the UK, you would get laughed out of the room. And most people (like me) with joint US and Bahamian passports choose to live and work in the Bahamas – the vast majority.

    Our detention centre is full of not only Haitians and Cubans, but also many Brits, French, Russians etc. caught working and living illegally. I once sat on a flight to Havana next to a group of Germans being deported via that country.

    We in the Caribbean region should not let others fool us into believing in utopias far away. Life is pretty good in our region.

  80. MoneyBrain

    @Bahamared
    Obviously it depends on how you define standard of living. If you need space, must have a car, must be care free living a very relaxed lifestyle then Singapore and most of Asia is OUT! (include the US too)

    If you want a decent, clean, crime free place with good inexpensive food and have the brains to benefit from what may well be the best Education system on Earth then Sing maybe the place to be born.

    Personally I prefer to live in Canada and be in a position to visit Bim or the Cbean regularly, which I do especially since I am Bajan to the core. I do however desire to see Bim succeeding at a higher level than it is currently and I am concerned that the future is looking questionable as a result of major economic problems in the US/ Europe and very poor “leadership” at home. Bim is squandering its vast potential.

  81. barbarees

    @moneybrain @ bahamared

    Thanks for the education. My travels are not as extensive as yours, limited to Europe, Caribbean, Central and South America. Yes, we can learn a lot from Singapore but putting into effect what we learn would be a big challenge. Moneybrain, you are in a good position to let the readers know how the compulsory Central Provident Fund works. You might also be able to tell us if employers can deduct monies from employees wages for the NIS or its equivalent and then pocket it as they do in Barbados . Similarly can they withhold VAT or its equivalent from the Singapore treasury?

  82. barbarees

    @Moneybrain
    Your below statement contradicts itself. I would call it a paradox.
    ”I am concerned that the future is looking questionable as a result of major economic problems in the US/ Europe and very poor “leadership” at home. Bim is squandering its vast potential. The US and Europe have the worse leaders in a very very long time if you are measuring the management of the respective economies pre and post the economic meltdown in the USA in 2007/2008. Greece which was an economic powerhouse before America was a nation, is today begging alms. They have tried about 10 different adminstrations within the last 2 years but to no avail. David Cameron has brought untold hardships on the people of the United Kingdom. Obama talks the talk and cant walk the walk.They have all the economists at their disposal and don’t have the answers. What do you expect from a nation like Barbados which imports everything apart from fresh air?

  83. barbarees

    @moneybrain

    Here is a repeat of earlier posting which not clear due to my poor typing skills.

    Your below statement contradicts itself. I would call it a paradox. quote
    ”I am concerned that the future is looking questionable as a result of major economic problems in the US/ Europe and very poor “leadership” at home. Bim is squandering its vast potential.” ends quote.

    The US and Europe have the worse leaders in a very very long time if you are measuring the management of the respective economies pre and post the economic meltdown in the USA in 2007/2008. Greece which was an economic powerhouse before America was a nation, is today begging alms. They have tried about 10 different adminstrations within the last 2 years but to no avail. David Cameron has brought untold hardships on the people of the United Kingdom. Obama talks the talk and cant walk the walk.They have all the economists at their disposal and don’t have the answers. What do you expect from a nation like Barbados which imports everything apart from fresh air?

  84. MoneyBrain

    @ B&B
    The CPF is the Govts mandatory Pension Scheme which compulsorily takes 20% of one’s pay.This is invested on your behalf BUT you can use it for home ownership, medical, education purposes. It works well as a major problem in the Western World is people not saving and then becoming long term dependents of the State. Why should we pay for others who squander their money in Nth America?

    Breaking laws in Singapore is NOT a good idea! Only a crazy human would fail to pass on CPF, NIS or anything owed to the Singapore Govt. The MPs are very highly paid $ 2 million/yr BUT they would not take a chance with corrupt activities.

  85. MoneyBrain

    @barbarees
    Regarding the state of Western Economies the following is true,

    They have already baked the cake.There is no way to get the eggs out of the cake and back into the egg shells and stuff them back up the hens posteriors.

    The problem with Greece, Europe and much of the western world is that they have been deluding themselves that it makes sense to live in a corrupt, Socialist Utopia. Greece’s train system was a classic example where revenue was less than half labour cost alone!!!!! Virtually no one paid Taxes and indeed if you owed$100,000 in back Taxes you could easily negotiate to pay $10-20K and obtain certification that you were up to date.Total Madness!

    If it were so easy then Governments around the World would just write a cheque to every person for $ One Million and everyone would be rich. Naturally, a coffee would soon be $50! I have a genuine Zimbabwean currency note for $ 100 Trillion which I keep in my wallet.

    Bim has become far more Corrupt over the past 40yrs and the leadership quality has diminshed substantially. This may well be true far and wide BUT that does not mean that Bajans should be subjected to poor performance.

  86. Craig Thomson

    Sorry to interrupt the love-in between bahamared, Moneybrain and barbarees but could we possibly have some constructive thoughts on how to improve the image of Barbados and attract more visitors to the island. Too much hot air and too few hot ideas.

  87. @Craig Thomson

    I have earlier made several recommendations. They include concentrating on convention business and possibly looking at Casinos. This concentration on improved amenities (and a related commitment to infrastructure) will see Barbados (and other regional destinations) climb the price chain and project a more all-round image than just natural endowments. Hence my reference to Singapore, Macau and others.

  88. MoneyBrain

    @Craig
    We regret our transgression BUT surely NO ONE has been stopping you from leading the way in terms of displaying your brilliance in this matter.

    Was some Master of the Universe Techie blocking your communication capability?

    At least our hot air was not CT flatulence.

  89. barbarees

    @ Craig
    You are barking up the wrong tree. That accusation should have been levelled at the Barbados South coast hoteliers. I am sure that they would have learned more in the last two days reading these exchanges than the boring repetitive crap written week after week by their mouthpiece. Be that as it may, I recommend that you, the Minister of Tourism and all Barbados hoteliers read the following article http://www.dsec.gov.mo/File/UStatContest/2009/SecondRunnerUp.aspx
    The Abstract reads:- Abstract:
    This paper aims to find out the impacts and changes resulting from the rapid growth in the tourism
    industry of Macau, looking at the three aspects in the goal of achieving sustainable tourism development: economical, social and environmental, and also to investigate the hotel industry’s
    role as an important element of Macau’s tourism industry and its impact on the local community. Both qualitative and quantitative
    research methodology will be used to complement together and
    clearly state the finding

  90. Peltdownman

    @Barbarees
    “the boring repetitive crap written”

    I think your head is really up your ass if you think that you three have written anything else but boring repetitive crap. What I have learned from you three is that there are still plenty of people willing to talk and not enough willing to do. When you have walked a mile in Adrian’s shoes, then and only then can you criticise. All the rest is pseudo-intellectual bullshit.

  91. Craig Thomson

    @MoneyBrian
    Cut the crap and give everyone 10 ideas on how to improve tourism to Barbados.

  92. barbarees

    @ Peltdown
    Time you stop wearing Adrian old shoes. Are you one of the South Coast Hotel mercenaries?

  93. Yatinkiteasy

    Who on the South Coast has taken money from Govt for their Hotel? Peach and Quiet , Acra?