Tag Archives: Barbados Investment

Founder of Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary named Queen’s Counsel in Canada

Peter Allard has been named Queen’s Counsel by the Province of British Columbia. The Canadian businessman, lawyer and philanthropist is the founder and owner of the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary in Barbados.

This is the second time Allard has been in the Canadian news recently. In September the Chief Justice of Canada opened Allard Hall – a new $55 million dollar law school building at the University of British Columbia that was helped along by a huge gift from Allard of 10 million dollars (Canadian). Allard also gave another 2 million to establish an international prize that supports freedom, integrity and human rights, and creates an online historical faculty archive.

As we related in our post The sad tale of a lost friend of Barbados Peter Allard was last in the news in Barbados when he penned an open letter to Bajans explaining why he had to close one of the island’s premier tourist attractions and why he is suing the Barbados government for dumping raw sewerage into the Graeme Hall wetlands and other violations of various treaties and agreements.

Allard explained the situation in a May 6, 2010 press release:

“The investment in the Sanctuary was supposed to be part of a sustainable environmental initiative, dependent on government leadership. As the largest private environmental stakeholder in Barbados, we continue to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars annually to maintain the Sanctuary, but we all have to face the fact that it’s Government who is killing the wetland.   The study shows that our environmental commitment and investment cannot withstand this assault.”

… Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary owner Peter Allard in a May 6, 2010 press release.

At one time Allard was in love with Barbados and focused his philanthropic efforts here. Since coming into conflict with the corrupt Bajan elites though, Allard has funded projects in Africa, Canada and elsewhere in the Caribbean including St. Vincent and Dominica where he helped establish a National Park.

Allard’s problem in Barbados is with our corrupt politicians

Barbados politicians and their land developer friends want to profit from the sale and commercial development of environmentally-protected lands, including public lands once designated for two National Parks. Allard opposed this rape of our natural heritage and that was the end of his relationship with the powerful elites.

How much do the corrupt politicians and their land developer friends hate Allard?

Then PM Owen Arthur and Health Minister Liz Thompson denied the people of Barbados a multi-million dollar cancer and AIDS hospice rather than accept it from Peter Allard with no strings attached. Given a choice between accepting philanthropy from Allard or not, the corrupt politicians preferred our loved ones to die in pain in that filthy hole called the Queen Elizabeth Hospital instead of spending their last days well looked after in a beautiful place with their family members.

That, my friends, takes a lot of corruption and hate but Arthur and Thompson had more than enough.

Congratulations to Peter Allard

Congratulations to Peter Allard upon being honoured by the Canadian government. We wish he had had a better experience in Barbados, but if it’s any comfort he’s not the only philanthropist or foreign investor to be set up and taken advantage of ‘pon de rock. The real losers are we Bajans and our children and grand-children who will never know the National Parks and green space that Allard and others fought for.

Here is the press release from the Government of British Columbia, received via Google Alerts…. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Environment, Offshore Investments

Former Canadian diplomat “Barbados a case study of systemic corruption”

 

“I have come to question the country’s laws and constitution and intend to expose the rottenness of its corrupt system.”

… former Canadian diplomat Isaac Goodine in his new book

Book be released on November 30th – Independence Day?

by Junior Campbell – AllVoices

I persist with Canadian diplomat Isaac Goodine’s story of how he and his family fell victim to fraudsters in my homeland because I believe that any hardship arising from this expose is outweighed by the benefits to Barbadians that may accrue from confronting the corruption that plagues the island.

In his book “How Barbados Works: A Case Study of Systemic Corruption” Goodine declares that his intention is not to tarnish Barbados’ image, but rather to demonstrate that “there are many honest ‘Bajans’ on the island and abroad, who are frustrated by the prevailing corruption in the system and feel powerless to bring about change by themselves.

The silenced majority

These Barbadans Goodine calls “the silenced majority” and states his intention to challenge some of them to tell the truth. He expresses the hope that persons in Barbados’ civil society will help the government and its agencies clean up their act.

“This is also their story.” he says.

“When their victims, local or foreign, lose confidence in them, it is the elites’ lofty positions and corresponding connections that intimidate many into silence.”

AllVoices & Junior Campbell publish Part 2 of excerpts from the soon to be released book by former Canadian diplomat Isacc Goodine: “How Barbados Works: A Case Study of Systemic Corruption

Also see BFP’s previous story: Former Canadian Diplomat to publish Barbados exposé – Corruption, Greed, Opportunism

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Harlequin shuts down Merricks, Allamanda projects

How many abandoned developments can Barbados take?

by Stolen Sea Eggs

2009: “The Merricks Beach Resort will become one of Barbados’s most luxurious, family-orientated 5 star resorts and will offer state-of-the-art accommodation and amenities including a world class spa. There is currently a shortage of this level of accommodation on the island.”

… from Harlequin Property: The Merricks, Barbados

2011: “Government had offered Harlequin concessions but to date they had not received them, so the development company had to shut the projects down until the concessions became available.”

… from the Nation article 13 workers lose jobs

Where is the bottom?

Word came yesterday that Harlequin Properties shut down construction at the Merricks Resort Development and the Allamanda Beach Hotel – “due to Government’s failure to provide concessions” according to an article in The Nation.

Harlequin says that the Barbados Government promised the company certain unnamed concessions at the start of the projects, but to date the government hasn’t delivered on its promises. That could be. Could it also have something to do with the alleged fraud at Harlequin’s Buccament Bay Resort? Who knows!

These are bad times and they are not getting better tomorrow. Whatever the promised concessions, if they involve revenue output from the Barbados Treasury the vault is empty and no amount of promising or wishing will make it not so. Did we promise roads, power, water and other infrastructure to the project? The money probably isn’t there. It really hasn’t been for decades unless we planned to borrow it and that free ride on our grandchildren is ending according to the IMF and any reality check.

We can’t pay our pensioners and government employees on time, chemists are waiting up to a year to be paid for government prescription plans and at least four buses I know of are sitting idle because the budget isn’t there to cover major engine and transmission work.

Other big projects are in trouble too as the private sector goes into hibernation during the financial chaos. The Four Seasons is nothing but a concrete wasteland, and in another year or so many of the half-done footings will be seriously damaged. There’s nothing more insidiously destructive to unfinished structures than salt-laced water running down exposed rebar and into the concrete for a couple of years. I’m sure that my friend and rebar engineer Grenville Phillips II would agree. 🙂

Barbados: Failed promises to investors and philanthropists

The other side of the story is that over the years Barbados has made it a habit to promise much to foreign investors to entice them to the island, but then fails to pay up. Off the top of my head I can think of a two prime examples, but there are many more… Continue reading

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Patrick R. Hoyos: Poor Barbados justice system frightens away foreign investors

“Where is the justice?”

Editor’s comment: This article by Patrick Hoyos brilliantly explains what is probably one of the most destructive forces in our society and economy – the inability of our justice system (for a variety of reasons) to deliver justice. Bajans have long known that our highly politicized and under-funded justice system cannot be relied upon, and that “Rule of Law” in Barbados means that those in positions of power can change or ignore the rules and the law without accountability.

The big problem for the elites is that with the advent of the internet, Barbados lost the power to control information. Thus, foreign investors and people who might be thinking about doing business in Barbados now know that business disputes typically take decades to resolve before the Barbados courts. Smart money runs from doing business in such a jurisdiction.

Increasingly international investors and companies are happy to have their money flow through Barbados to other jurisdictions – but invest or do business here? Leave the money here? Now that’s something else.

We’ve reprinted Patrick’s article here in full, lest someone pressure him to remove it from his own website, but we ask you to read the full article at The Broad Street Journal. If you live, do business or invest in Barbados, you’ll soon find yourself visiting The Broad Street Journal on a daily basis and eagerly anticipating the next article.

A bridge too far

By Patrick R. Hoyos    Published May 24, 2011

It is now three months since I wrote in this space about The Tribunal That Won’t Deliver its Judgment.

Three months since I noted that, despite having to wait three years after winning their case in court to have hearings before the Severance Payments Tribunal to determine the “quantum of severance,” and nearly a year since those hearings had ended, no judgement had yet been delivered.

Three months since I pointed out the frustration felt by all of the plaintiffs that justice for them seemed only to exist on paper but could not find its way into coin of the realm.

Three months since I pointed out that one of the plaintiffs had died without receiving his settlement.

I asked then, “Where is the justice?” Continue reading

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Government has no business running business

The opposite of “entrepreneur” is “government employee”

The Barbados Investment & Development Corporation has no problem blowing its own horn about the industrial estates under its care. The BIDC website brags, and not unreasonably so…

“The Property and Estate Management Department oversees the ongoing maintenance of the industrial estates owned and managed by the Corporation. The estates are strategically located across the island, and since the first one was established in Grazettes in 1961, have served as a low-cost base of operations for thousands of locally-owned and foreign-owned manufacturing companies. The BIDC’s industrial estates are a significant feature of the Barbadian physical landscape, encompassing over 90 acres of land. Their contribution to the economic and social transformation of the island over the years has been significant.”

There is truth in that statement, but left unsaid and unknown is the massive cost to the taxpayer due to unpaid rents, loans and the natural inefficiency of government employees pretending they know what business is all about. There’s also the not so little matter of the run down condition of some of the properties that might as well be abandoned. They sure look that way, and no real business person would let those assets deteriorate.

But remember… the opposite of “entrepreneur” is “government employee” – and you don’t need to be a brilliant scholar to work that one out.

Our old friend Afra Raymond just published an article about Trinidad & Tobago government employees pretending to be entrepreneurs while holding on to the public purse in case a bailout is needed. See? Barbados and T&T have a whole lot in common!

Property Matters – The Business of Government

by Afra Raymond

Once again, I am using this edition of Property Matters to consider the ever-controversial State Enterprises, against the wider question of the role of the State.  This is no small area for examination and I start by using what seems to be the favourite quote of Trade and Industry Minister, Stephen Cadiz, “Government has no business running business“.

Given the politics practiced here, it should be no surprise that all our political parties give emphasis to the important role of the private sector in the economy and society and so on.

The line of reasoning goes like this – “The State is only here to facilitate and clear the way for Private Enterprise.  The State does not intend to stand in the way of or compete with Private Enterprise” Those are not actual quotes, but they are just a paraphrasing of the sentiments expressed by various politicians over the years, whatever the party in power.

But the actual scale of the State’s involvement in the economy is in stark contrast to the political speeches.  It is my view that the State is in direct competition with the Private Sector in significant areas of the economy.  The large numbers of State Enterprises are inescapable examples of that.

We have to remember that it wasn’t always so…

Continue reading this article at Afra Raymond’s blog: Property Matters: The business of Government

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No money to fund Barbados Investment Development Corporation, so shut it down!

A suggestion to save taxpayers’ money

by BFP reader “C” in St. James

As a small business owner over the last nine months I have found it increasingly difficult to contact a Business Development Officer (BDO) at the Barbados Investment Development Corporation (BIDC). It would appear that as the financial situation of the country has declined, monies form the BIDC has been diverted to other Government bodies, accordingly BDOs aware that there is no monies to undertake programs have taken to not answering their telephones or emails in the hope of avoiding having to break the news to their client companies.

My money saving idea is that until the BIDC is fully re-financed at least 90% of the BIDC personnel, including directors and the CEO, should be sent home without pay until such time as there is something for them to do.

I see no reason why we the tax payers should pay for these civil servants to sit and twiddle their thumbs when it is self evident that there are no funds available for them to undertake any meaningful programs to assist local companies. As soon as the funds become available they would of course be re-hired.

This lesson in reality would perhaps also help to give the CEO, BDOs and ancillary staff empathy with the harsh financial realities that companies operate under every single day in trying to maintain a business and employment in Barbados.

Yours Faithfully,

“C”
St James

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Prime Minister and Former Chief Justice spar in the media – but still no Land Titles in Barbados

“To International Investors and retirees considering purchasing land in Barbados: Good luck suckers. Welcome to the Third World.” *

“Do foreign investors and retirees realize they can never obtain titles to lands and homes in Barbados?”

One Canadian’s Title Deed missing for 37 years!

Prime Minster Stuart and former Chief Justice SIR David Simmons are currently engaged in a public war of words over who is the most incompetent. We’ll reprint two newspaper articles at the end of our post, but for now you can sum up the little boys fighting as this:

Prime Minister Stuart: Did so!

Chief Justice Simmons: Did not!

The land titles system in Barbados has been in chaos for decades. Incompetence, corruption and a laziness by elected and appointed government officials combined to get us where we are now: No land titles have been issued for years, and those previously issued are ALL SUSPECT. Continue reading

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