Tag Archives: Barbados Investment

Canadian Government warns about investing and real estate purchases in Barbados (!!!)

Dear Barbados Free Press,

Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada recently changed the Barbados Travel Advice and Advisories to include the following additional paragraph:

“Canadians interested in purchasing property or making other investments should seek legal advice from appropriate professionals in Canada and in this country before making commitments. Disputes arising from such activities could be prolonged and costly to resolve.”

This change reflects a report circulated at Foreign Affairs earlier in the year.

Also of interest is that Long Beach is still listed as a place to avoid for reasons of crime and personal safety. I understood that the Long Beach rapist/killer was caught, but I don’t know if the continued listing is an oversight or the result of new crimes and information.

Yours truly,

@gc.ca

Advertisements

20 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Business & Banking, Canada, Crime & Law, Offshore Investments, Real Estate

Barbados Environment Minister caught lying again about Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary Dispute

Richard Nixon: “I am not a crook.”

Bill Clinton: “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.”

Environment Minister Denis Lowe:

“Environment Minister, Dr. Denis Lowe says the re-opening of the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary is up to the owners, but government remains committed to doing all it can to ensure it happens.

He says he’s looking forward to having discussion with the owners of the sanctuary soon.

According to the minister, a working group has been set up to help government coordinate its vision for the sanctuary with the owner.

Dr. Lowe says the survival of the sanctuary has never been in question for the DLP administration which has inherited a strained relationship with the owners.” (Total lies from the Government mouthpiece CBC article Graeme Hall Talks)

Government Refused to Communicate with Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary since January 2009!

The last time that Environment Minister Lowe met with representatives from the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary was over a year ago in January of 2009.  At that time, Dr. Lowe was again informed that the government-controlled sluice gate into the wetlands had been broken for five years.

Environment Minister Lowe said he’d “get right back” to the Sanctuary representatives about the sluice gate and the other concerns that caused the Sanctuary owner to shut the facility.

Dr. Lowe never contacted the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary again. That remains true a year later in February 2010. The sluice gate is still broken and wildlife species are still dying in the sanctuary as a result.

Now Denis Lowe has the audacity to lie to the Bajan public about what has and is being done by the government about the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary. It’s a damned shame that the CBC reporter didn’t ask a few more simple questions but the truth is he or she might have but the Prime Minister’s pal Leroy Parris is in charge at the CBC.

The same tall tale is in the Barbados Advocate and wonder of wonders – that story doesn’t talk about any of the central issues either. Nothing about the change in land permissions to allow development on the Graeme Hall watershed. Nothing about the demise of the Graeme Hall National Park first proposed in the government’s land plans around 1982. Nothing about the government’s refusal for six years to repair the sluice gate that regulates the health of the wetlands. Nothing about the fact that the Canadian investor behind the nature sanctuary recently filed allegations of international treaty violations by the Government of Barbados.

Nope. Not a word of the big issues in the Bajan media. According to Minister Lowe and his government, it’s all a “personal dispute” with the owner doan ya know! Not a word about the theft of a National Park from the people of Barbados.

‘nuf said.

Barbados Government cut off water to Nature Sanctuary wildlife

Just so you know the truth

The government did one crucial thing this past December though: it cut off the water to the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary over a billing dispute about water. You can read the nature sanctuary press release for the details, but the short form is this…

When the government workers arrived at the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary and shut off the water service and chopped the pipe (not just lock it!) it wasn’t about a billing dispute. It was just one more step in the constructive expropriation of a foreign investor’s assets by the political and business elites of Barbados.

Dr. Lowe’s current lies in the Barbados news media are designed to manage public talk about what happened when the DLP Government changed the land use permissions to allow development of the Graeme Hall wetlands and watershed. The David Thompson government took away a planned National Park from the people of Barbados and arranged for land developer friends to profit from the move.

The Barbados news media is assisting to keep the people in the dark and refuses to cover the central issues of the Graeme Hall story – when they talk about it at all.

And that’s the way it is this morning in Barbados.

Further Reading

Bajan Reporter, January 29, 2010: BREAKING NEWS – Promised Meeting with Graeme Hall Officials Fails to Materialise When Barbadian Government Officials Refuse to Respond

Bajan Reporter, December 21, 2009: Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary – who’s REALLY hurting from the closure?

Bajan Reporter, October 30, 2009: Canadian Alleges Treaty Violations by Barbados

Here’s the current article in the Barbados Advocate. Check out their website to get your own copy, but we’ll post it here in its entirety because the Barbados news media regularly changes history by removing articles from their electronic and paper archives. (click on image for 200k Jpeg file)

9 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Environment, Nature, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption, Wildlife

Lack of Shareholder Rights laws in Barbados makes investors “meat on the table”

“Although saying that the laws of Barbados permit directors to issue new shares by means of a private placement (that is, selling to private investor without an initial public offering) without shareholder approval and without first offering the shares to existing shareholders, Group Chairman and CEO Dodridge Miller yesterday admitted in a statement that the private placement effectively resulted in diluting existing shareholders shares by four per cent of their previous holdings.”

… from the Caribbean360.com news story Sagicor says no money problems despite private sale of shares

Sagicor’s silent memo to its shareholders is a warning to all investors: “We, the Directors, own you.”

Early in January we covered the story of how Sagicor issued an additional 11.7 million common shares to the National Insurance Board of Barbados via a private placement at a 5% discount to the trading price on the BSE at the date of the issuance. (See BFP’s story Did Sagicor’s private placement of additional shares dilute the holdings of existing shareholders?)

What did Sagicor use the money for? Why was there no prior offering to current shareholders? Why was there no explanation to shareholders until the complaints started to roll in to the news media?

On one level, these questions don’t matter at all because everything the Sagicor Directors did was apparently legal under the laws of Barbados. So what if they reduced the value of shareholders’ assets by 4% overnight with no notice? It was all legal.

The newspaper articles have faded out, but the bad taste in the mouths of thousands of Sagicor investors still remains – which is why we’re publishing this reminder to facilitate discussion.

Moral of the Story

Let this be a lesson to Barbados investors both foreign and domestic… Under the laws of Barbados, you’re meat on the table for the big boys.

6 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Business & Banking, Consumer Issues, Offshore Investments

Barbados Tourism: Adrian Loveridge and other Bajans ask many questions, but receive few answers

‘He (Geoffrey Roach, CEO of the Bridgetown Cruise Terminal) reported cruise ship passengers arrivals to be 760,000 for the last financial year, and projected a six percent growth in the next financial year’.

‘But he said passengers were spending less, as evidenced in a recent Florida Caribbean Cruise Association study which put the average spend per cruise passenger in Barbados at US$69, down from US$111 in 2006.’

From the  Midweek Nation, Wednesday 23rd December 2009 Cruise arrivals up, revenue down

So despite the declared increases in cruise ship passenger arrivals, actual per capita spending is down by a staggering 38% or US$30 million for the last ‘financial year’.

I wonder if this US$30 million figure was factored in to the $100 million loss in tourism revenue recently quoted the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association?

So what measures to redress this situation have been put in place?

What investment has been made by the Barbados Tourism Authority and who is monitoring its cost-effectiveness?

Adrian Loveridge
23rd December 2009

3 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism

Al Barrack: the man who knows too much?

The Al Barrack story gets stranger and stranger at every turn. (See our previous story: Al Barrack is wrong: Justice and the Law are not for everyone in Barbados)

The Government of Barbados owes him $60 million dollars plus due to a court judgement, but won’t pay.

Now we’re asked to believe that perfect strangers are going to pay off the Government of Barbados debt to Mr. Barrack and assume the $60 million judgement on the chance that the Government of Barbados won’t use the courts to delay payment for another 10 or 20 years.

Something is wrong here, folks.

Keltruth Blog asks the questions that our Bajan media should have…

Keltruth Blog: Will a Mysterious “Third Party” Pay Off Debt Owed By Barbados Government to Al Barrack?

27 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Who are the most influential Canadian Expats? Michael J Fox is #1, Wayne Gretzky #2… and OH MY!!!

Canadian ExpatThe Canadian Expat Association’s list of “The most influential Canadian Expats” has just been published. Thanks to all BFP readers who sent us the story and to Google alerts too.

Here are the Top 5 Most Influential Canadian Expats as chosen by the Canadian Expat Association (website) and the public…

#1: Michael J. Fox (Actor, Back to the Future series etc.)

#2: Wayne Gretzky (Ice Hockey super hero)

#3: Tony Burman (Who? Oh… managing director of Al Jazeera English News)

#4: Neil Young (Musician who sings like someone has a pair of pliers on his toe)

#5: Peter Allard

Here’s what the Canadian Expat Association says about Allard…

Peter Allard, formerly of Edmonton, practiced law in Vancouver before moving to Barbados about 15 years ago, to focus on preserving natural habitats especially threatened by tourism and other development in the Caribbean.

On the island of Barbados, to spearhead national environmental awareness and encourage government-led development of national water policy and environmental management practices, Mr. Allard provided in excess of US $34 million to restore and professionally manage the last mangrove forest and most significant migratory bird habitat in Barbados. The Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary consists of 35 acres of wetlands and forest, and is located within the newly designated 81 acre Graeme Hall Ramsar wetland, recognized by the Convention on Wetlands. Within the Site, Mr. Allard has set aside approximately 5 acres of land which has been developed with visitor and educational facilities. Mr. Allard has promoted an environmental standard that encourages development of a Barbadian national water policy. He believes that while private sector efforts to preserve habitats is very important, effective environmental management practices must be derived from government-led national water policy. In light of this belief, Mr. Allard has donated (and continues to donate) hundreds of thousands of additional dollars associated with public/environmental health, safety and education in Barbados.

On the island of St. Vincent Mr. Allard continues to provide the government with direct support for the St. Vincent Amazon parrot conservation programme, in an effort to save this endangered flagship species from extinction. The importance of this programme is significant, as it is the first phase of a national effort to protect the species and its natural habitat. Mr. Allard is also responsible for maintaining the only other St. Vincent Amazon population in the Caribbean (located at the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary in Barbados) in order to maintain genetic diversity. To date, the cost of this Programme has been in excess of $500,000, and it is hoped that the core populations in St. Vincent and Barbados will be the basis for genetically-diverse wild St. Vincent parrot populations when government can declare a new National Park for the species.

On the island of Dominica Mr. Allard provided the government of Dominica with the largest and single most significant contribution that ensured creation of the Morne Diablotin National Park on January 21, 2000. His contributions were the essential element that guaranteed the formation of the world’s newest National Park of the millennium. The Park is expected to become the Caribbean’s second United Nations Natural World Heritage Site.

While residing in Barbados Mr. Allard has widely donated in excess of $2.0 million to 75 Canadian charities, focusing on research and development of treatments for cancer, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, and for arts and health and human welfare support organizations.

3 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Canada, Environment, Offshore Investments

Six weeks later: Still no Spanish, Portuguese language welcome on Barbados Tourism or Investment & Development websites.

Stephen-Lashley

MP Stephen Lashley wants to make BTA overcome 'island time' performance.

Last week the government member for Christ Church West Central, Stephen Lashley, stood up in Parliament and talked about the need for Barbados to tap into new international markets for tourism and industry. As tactfully as possible (considering he is a member of the government), Mr. Lashley made the point that our Barbados Tourism Authority and Barbados Investment and Development Corporation aren’t doing nearly the job that they should be doing.

To be fair, Lashley talked about “encouraging” the BTA and BIDC and being positive about their efforts. He also chided the Opposition for being “negative” as he delivered the traditional Bajan milquetoast speech about “what we’re gonna do” etc etc etc. His central message for those listening at the BTA and BIDC came through though: “FOR GOD’S SAKE JUST BLOODY-WELL DO SOMETHING!”

Good luck with your encouragement, Mr. Lashley. Just don’t hold your breath waiting for results.

Let’s get real for a minute, shall we?

Over six weeks ago, Minister of International Business and International Transport George Hutson gave a press conference where he mused about the possibilities of targeting South American markets to fill the tourism void during the “off” season – and to try to raise some new business opportunities.

At that time Barbados Free Press said that IF the government and the Minister were serious about South America, they would already have ordered Spanish and Portuguese language options on the websites of the Barbados Tourism Authority and the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation. We said it would take a week, maybe two, to translate both websites, put up a welcome in Spanish and Portuguese and at least look like we mean business.

We also predicted that it wouldn’t happen. We said…

“Oh well, not to get upset about it because the truth is that nothing will be done.

The Minister spoke a fine little speech, and the newspaper printed a fine little article and editorial.

That’s it, folks. That’s all you’ll see. This is Barbados and we do – or don’t do – things a certain way.”

We were correct. Here we are six weeks later and nothing was done. The BTA and BIDC websites are still in English only.

See? We told ya that nothing would be done!

Adrian Loveridge

Adrian Loveridge: Hotel owners have been asking for Spanish/Portuguese BTA website for 10 years!

After all, the Barbados Tourism Authority failed to establish Spanish, Portuguese language websites despite 10 years of begging by hotel owners.

Why should anything change now?

Please have a read of our original story and we’ll see you again in another six weeks and every six weeks thereafter until all those concerned become embarrassed enough to make it happen – if such a thing is possible in the cushy government service. I tell you the truth friends – very few in the BTA or BIDC would last a week in a similar position in London or New York.

Barbados Tourism Authority failed to establish Spanish, Portuguese language websites despite 10 years of begging by hotel owners

9 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism