Tag Archives: Barbados Economy Crisis

Inter-American Development Bank cancels $160m loan for Barbados Four Seasons project

barbados four seasons construction

Another monster project left to rot in the Bajan sun

The on again – off again Barbados Four Seasons resort project may have received its final coffin-nail with the IDB finally withdrawing from this decade-old debacle. (Nation News: IDB withdraws loan for Four Seasons)

How much taxpayer funding has the Barbados government poured into this mess? Are we allowed to know? Did the government transfer any of the National Insurance Scheme pension funds to the project developers?

Barbados Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler has made all sorts of claims. In March 2013 he told Bajans that our taxpayer monies would be recovered on the sale of the Four Seasons. Well Mr. Sinckler? Where’s our money?

Back then, BFP’s readers were asked if Bajan taxpayers would recover all the monies that their government invested in the Four Seasons. 50% said we’ll never know the truth, 43.5% said there was not a chance that we would recover the monies. 6.4% said we’d get back all the money, (but that was probably Minister Sinckler himself sitting there for voting for hours.)

Former PM Thompson said that supporting Four Seasons could be “extremely risky” to the DLP Government, but Freundel Stuart went ahead and did it after Thompson died.

“Now of course the first objective is not for Government to give guarantees to projects of this type. So the Government is not available, generally speaking, for that kind of thing and I want to make that abundantly clear. It is extremely risky. It has brought down Governments in other countries and I don’t intend to let it bring down my government. And it can sometimes smack of an element of favouritism and once you start it, it becomes like a rolling stone that will gather moss…and therefore, we have to be very careful,”

February 2, 2010 – Prime Minister David Thompson in the Barbados Advocate article PM defends stance on Four Seasons

Hard Times have arrived in Barbados

We’ve said it before, and we’ll keep saying it…

1/ Shun debt. Shun expenses. Live as frugally as you can.

2/ Work hard, save what you can.

3/ Look after family and friends as you are able because you might need their help someday.

4/ Learn to grow food, repair your own car, maintain your own home. Repair clothes, repair everything. Don’t buy new anything: let some other fool pay the depreciation!

5/ Smile at the tourists, make them feel welcome but never pressured. Pick up the rubbish where you can and never do anything that takes away from the beauty of Bim.

6/ Thank God for what you do have – then get back to working harder than you ever have before.

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Business & Banking, Economy, Offshore Investments, Real Estate

Happy New Year 2014: Forbes announces that Barbados is on its knees, in a financial meltdown.

Barbados Finance Minister Sinckler

“Barbados has credit rating equal to Gabon and Nigeria.”

“That is very bad news for 126,000 long-time contributors to Barbados’ National Insurance Fund…

At least 60 percent of the Barbados National Insurance Fund’s $2 billion is invested in this dodgy Bajan junk – it now finances a third of Barbados’ entire public debt.”

There’s not much more to say when the truth slaps you hard in the face – in this case delivered by one of the most respected financial publications: Forbes.

You see that photo above of Finance Minister Christ Sinckler, “the Grinchler who soiled Christmas” ???

Forbes printed that. Wuhloss!

It looks like BLP Member of Parliament Dr. William Duguid knew something when he pulled the ejection handles on Barbados, moved his family to Canada and his assets offshore. You can bet that Owen Arthur has his Swiss bank account number memorised too!

And although the DLP blames the BLP and the BLP blames the DLP, it really doesn’t matter anymore. This is where we are…

Postcard from Barbados — a.k.a. ‘Cyprus West’

Barbados, “the Jewel of the Caribbean,” the tiny easternmost island in the Lesser Antilles with 288,000 year-around inhabitants and lots of very rich foreign visitors and investors, is in the throes of a financial meltdown.

While its entire GDP is now only worth about $4.2 billion, and its population is smaller than that of Duluth Minnesota, this crisis is worth examining closely. For here we have a very precise example of the “finance curse,” where excessive dependence on high debt, an aggressive offshore haven industry, very low tax rates for high-net worth investors, foreign companies, and banks, and high tax rates for everyone else, have essentially brought this little country to its knees. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Disaster, Economy, Offshore Investments

Sandals Resort Bombardier Challenger jet burns duty-free fuel… Minister Inniss tells hotel industry to shut up about Sandals Resort concessions

“Stop begging for handouts and asking for all sorts of concessions and start doing more to help local industry,” said Inniss.

Too bad Inniss didn’t say the same thing to Sandals Resorts because they don’t serve one drop of Bajan rum. Not a fucking drop.

Just a few days ago, Minister of Industry and Business Development Donville Inniss chided Barbados hotels to stop begging to receive the same concessions given to the Sandals Group. Minister Inniss made it clear that local hotels should shut-the-f**k-up about the government’s incentives to Sandals.

So… STFU you ungrateful Barbados hotels who are exploiting the masses! You deserve nothing… not a single inflated dollar of tax relief!

Meanwhile, Sandals fills up their corporate jets with duty-free Jet-A and 3,000 Bajan families go to hell for Christmas courtesy of government layoffs.

Thanks, Prime Minister Stuart! Thanks Minister Pornville!

It make everything clear.

Inniss tells Bajan hotels to shut up!

Stop begging for handouts and start being more innovative, and use more local produce.

Minister of Industry and Business Development Donville Inniss issued this piece of advice to operators within the hotel sector this morning as he delivered the feature address during the opening of the Sunbury Harvest Agro-Processing Plant.

Players within the hotel sector, over the past few weeks, have raised concerns regarding a number of food and beverage concessions offered to the Sandals Group by the Government, saying that they too should be given such concessions.

Speaking to a small gathering at the St Philip location this morning, Inniss said: “In terms of our hotel sector, let me be candid about this.

“Stop begging for handouts and asking for all sorts of concessions and start doing more to help local industry,” said Inniss.

… read the rest of Donville’s disgusting rant at Barbados Today: Hotels told stop the begging

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Filed under Barbados, Economy

Barbados Goverment defaults on payments to health clinic builder – Project shut down

Barbados Financial Collapse

(Photo courtesy of The Nation. Click photo for large)

“Serious cash flow problem in central Government”

One of the Democratic Labour Party Government’s prized capital works projects has come to a screeching halt.

Work on the long awaited St John Polyclinic and adjoining facility that is slated to bear the name of late Prime Minister and long-standing Member of Parliament for the parish, David Thompson, has been stopped due to a serious cash flow problem in central Government.

According to reliable sources, the project’s main contractor, ADC Building and Maintenance, was owed almost $3 million before the red light was put up by Government.

… read the full article at The Nation: Work Stops!

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Filed under Barbados, Economy

Still News: Rayside Construction lays off 60 workers as Barbados Government defaults millions owed for completed work

rayside Construction logo barbados

Now tell me the truth…

Almost a month ago Rayside laid off 60 workers, with the Barbados Government hiding the fact that Rayside is owed millions for completed government projects.

But Rayside is owned by CLICO, and CLICO went under but was bailed out by the Government to cover up the fraud pulled off by then Prime Minister David Thompson and his faithful leader, ah… what’s ‘is name? Oh yeah… Leroy. Leroy Parris.

It’s all too complex for ordinary folk like us, and doubly too complex for the local news media who haven’t touched the story since they published this little ditty. There were a few little pieces of roadwork handed out to Rayside but just enough to keep them alive, and not enough to call back more than one out of every three workers. Don’t you believe that stuff about $35 million dollars in new road projects… that’s a pipe dream that will take 10 years if ever.

But hey… what’s a couple a dozen million dollars between friends especially if government owes it and can’t pay? Not that newsworthy, ya know!

60 laid off

TUE, SEPTEMBER 24, 2013 – 12:06 AM

ANOTHER MAJOR CONSTRUCTION company is sending home staff.

Effective today, about 60 workers of Rayside Construction Ltd will be off the job. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Economy

Smart partnerships needed in tough times

Barbados money tenner

Adrian Loveridge, small hotel owner - now selling!

Adrian Loveridge, small hotel owner – now selling!

Short of a miracle and/or a radical change in the way we do business, it appears we have headed into one of the most challenging tourism summers in recent history – hot on the heels of a poor winter.

With still no game changing strategies, other than one or two tinkering offerings on the horizon, is there more ‘we’ can do to avoid further widespread lay-offs and closures?

The answer has to be YES! And I think we can start by looking at further opportunities on our doorstep.

For ages, I have admired the work of the Barbados Association of Retired Persons. My wife and I have been lifetime members for a number of years and I cannot even begin to think of the savings it has brought us during that period, far outweighing any annual subscription fees.

For a number of reasons  I only purchased my first public company shares just over half a decade ago on the recommendation of our accountants. If we are lucky, our small capital investment will return to the level that we initially put into fund by the end of 2013. Ironically, in their latest quarterly report, the fund managers reminded us that during the last five years, cumulative inflation on Barbados reached 38 per cent and that any investment placed with them  ‘should outperform money left in a savings account over the long term’. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Consumer Issues

A symbol of our troubles: Tattered Barbados flag waves over stalled Four Seasons

Barbados Tattered Flag

Welcome to the Four Seasons, Barbados

The symbolism in the photo is stark: clouds obscure the Caribbean sun as weeds grow around a faded and ripped Bajan flag at yet another failed mega-project. A piece of garbage on a dead lawn provides the finishing touch.

Greed and politicians did this – mostly men who thought they were experts in leadership and running a country because they made speeches and got theyselves elected. The results of their decisions stand rotting in the sun all over the island: half built condos, closed hotels and crumbling steps. I’ve lost count of the sludge-filled swamps that used to be swimming pools surrounded by a hundred happy tourists baking and drinking Bajan rum.

It’s all over now and we did it to ourselves.

If we keep on blaming ‘the economy’ and 9/11 and Cuba we are headed only one way and that is down.

This is where we are now. Our best coasts and beaches are walled off or defended by thousands of motorcars. Our roadsides are tipping spots, while sullen shop clerks ‘greet’ visitors with about as much respect as you’d give a rat in your rubbish bin.

This is where our leaders have brought us, and when their time is up they head for Canada or Switzerland or Florida.

That’s where we are. The question is; what do we do now?

2013 Almond Barbados

Four Seasons flag photo courtesy of The Nation: Flag shame at Four Seasons

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Economy