Tag Archives: Grenada

Sandals deal a bad deal

beaches by sandals

A fabulous read at Groundation Grenada…

… considering the DLP government gave the same sort of outrageous concessions to Sandals Barbados.

“To lay, with one hand, the power of the government on the property of the citizen and with the other to bestow it upon favored individuals to aid private enterprises and build up private fortunes is none the less a robbery…” ~ Samuel Miller

In an act screaming of blunderbuss and willful myopia, last weekend, the Government of Grenada saw it fit to award a multi-million dollar private enterprise (Sandals Resort International) a multiple tax break….

In layman’s terms (because taxation jargon is notoriously opaque) this means that Sandals pays zero taxes on all profits it makes in Grenada. For thirty years.

It certainly isn’t our intention to belittle an investment of $100 million US dollars (or rather far less, as earlier explained) in these tight economic times. Even with the promise of an additional 200 jobs raising rising to a headcount of 400 based on Sandals’ press release.

Still the forbearance on the revenues given a waiver in this deal strikes as way too much given for way too little.

Must we always genuflect before these gods of “foreign investment”? Without a doubt, with some ingenuity, creativity and imagination, our own local manufacturing and agro industries could be supported in a similar fashion to create much more than 200 jobs, and without requiring such deep tax cuts.

This decision is also a foolish one because it belies our naïve and amateur approach to marketing and foreign investment and our inability to recognise that our country is a partner, not a charity.

… a few sentences culled from a brilliant article at Groundation Grenada: Deal or No Deal: Grenada-Sandals Partnership Debunked

6 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Economy, Grenada

Intra-Caribbean flights taxed to death. Here’s a current LIAT itinerary…

“From: no-reply@Liatairline.com
Subject: Travel Itinerary

Dear Customer,

Thank you for booking with LIAT The Caribbean Airline…”

“Thank you for booking with LIAT…”

Like we had much choice between BGI and Grenada? LOL! US$240 to fly to Grenada and return is one thing… US$412.48 is another. Intra-Caribbean tourism cannot happen at prices like these.

The sad truth…

LIAT (1974) LTD
LIAT(1974)Ltd.
P.O. Box 819, St. John’s/Antigua

(Name)
(Address)
Barbados

Confirmation Number:  (XXXXXXXX)      Agent Number: XXXXXXX
Booking Date: XXJun12    Booked By: XXXXXXX

ITINERARY: (NAME)

Date                  Flt     Depart                              Arrive      Stops
———–          —–   ————————-   ———    —————- —–
Thu XXJul12  771     BGI – BARBADOS,        8:10am     GND – GRENADA, G  9:05AM
Sun XXJul12  726     GND – GRENADA, G    3:10pm     BGI – BARBADOS,     4:05PM

Fare and Charges Detail:   Total For 01 guest(s)         Fare: US240.00
Insurance: US9.66
Sales Tax:  US42.00
Passenger Facility Charge: US31.20
Airport Development Tax: US16.00
Airport Authority Taxes: US8.90
Airport Passenger Taxes: US29.72
Fuel Surcharge: US35.00
———
Total: US$412.48

Payment(s): Visa: US$412.48—-
Balance Due:         US$0.00

Thanks to an avid BFP contributor!

18 Comments

Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Barbados Tourism

Cowardly Barbados Advocate fires another journalist to please a politician

Rawle Titus fired from Grenada Advocate

When Tourism Minister Noel Lynch threatened to withdraw all government advertising from the Barbados Advocate unless the paper fired columnist Adrian Loveridge, the editor and senior management said “Yes, Massa – whatever you want Massa” and dumped Loveridge.

Now those cowards at Fontabelle are at it again…

Grenada, Barbados: The Fallout over Journalist’s Firing

by Matthew Hunte

As another regional journalist pays the price for standing by his story, bloggers are wondering about the state of press freedom in the Caribbean. Rawle Titus -veteran journalist and president of the Media Workers Association of Grenada since 2008- was dismissed from his post as editor of the Grenada Advocate after he refused to retract or apologize for a front-page story in the March 9th edition of the newspaper headlined “Prime Minister Makes Fresh Moves.” (The Grenada Advocate is owned and published by the Advocate Publishers (2000) Inc, based in Fontabelle, St. Michael, Barbados.)

According to the story, leader of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) and Prime Minister of Grenada, Tillman Thomas, held a caucus where candidates for the upcoming elections were selected, without informing senior members of the now fractious party.

Government press secretary (and former journalist) Richard Simon wrote to the management in Barbados twice, seeking a retraction for what were deemed to be inaccuracies. After the 2nd letter, Titus was dismissed by General Manager Sandra Clarke, effective March 30th, 2012.

According to the MWAG, the Advocate was pressured into firing Titus and added:

We have growing concerns about increasing incidents that will suggest that those guarantees are coming under attack. This latest incident follows a series of other developments we have been monitoring in the past.

… continue reading this post at GlobalVoices: Grenada, Barbados: The Fallout over Journalist’s Firing

Hat tip to journalist Gerard Best for the video of Rawle Titus

6 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Freedom Of The Press, Grenada, News Media, Political Corruption, Politics & Corruption

US Court hits Grenada government airport revenues

A lesson for Barbados and Al Barrack?

Grenada owed money to a bank in Taiwan and didn’t pay – so the bank sued in the USA and now all US airline revenues that would have been paid to Grenada’s airport are being paid into an escrow account in the USA. As a result, the airport is in deep financial trouble and the Grenadian government looks pathetic on the world stage. If the situation isn’t rectified PDQ, the travel and tour sellers will soon start to wonder if their clients will get stuck in the middle someday. When that thought starts to form, the travel industry will start to recommend other destinations until confidence returns. It might be happening already because we discovered the story through ETN Travel News.

There is a lesson here somewhere about what can happen when governments decide to not pay lawful debts. Globalism is more than a word, you know. Increasingly, creditors are successful seizing assets in other countries when stonewalled by governments and courts in the Caribbean and elsewhere.

For the last day and a bit we featured Why Al Barrack will never win against the Barbados Government: The Fix is In! at the top of the blog – telling the story of how the Barbados won’t pay a man even when faced with an order from the Barbados court.

One of our readers, millertheanunnaki, commented…

“I am willing to bet that if Barrack were to sell the debt to an overseas factor through a “big” British or American firm of lawyers this matter would be settled within weeks. If not a judgment to seize Government’s properties in London or New York would certainly be enforced unlike what prevails locally.”

There are certain government assets that can’t be seized overseas (Embassies, airplanes etc.) but the idea of seizing airline fees is a shocker. Can you imagine what would happen if some court in New York or London ordered airlines to pay all Grantley Adams airport fees to the court over the Al Barrack debt? How about port fees for cruise ships too?

Wuhloss! That would put the mongoose in with the chickens! If that happened you can bet the government would settle with Al Barrack right away – and that just shows how bankrupt our government is: both financially and morally.

Statement from St. George’s Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation

ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada – The St. George’s Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation is working with other government departments, particularly the Attorney General’s Chambers and the Ministry of Finance, to arrive at a solution to the current financial difficulties being experienced by the Grenada Airports Authority (GAA).

This situation arose as result of the EXIM Bank of Taiwan obtaining judgment against the government of Grenada for outstanding loans in a suit filed in the United States. The Taiwanese have made a claim for all monies owing to the government of Grenada and its agencies to be paid against the loan. Consequently, a request was made to airlines operating on the Grenada route to pay monies owed to the Grenada Airports Authority to the Taiwanese. Continue reading

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Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Ethics, Grenada, Offshore Investments

Swine Flu Cruise Ship Refused By Grenada – Heading For Barbados… Now What?

Barbados-ocean-dream-cruise

UPDATE: Ocean Dream Denied Barbados Entry – 43 Crew Ill With “Flu-like” Symptoms

A LUXURY CRUISE LINER carrying 43 crew members exhibiting “flu-like symptoms” was denied entry into the Bridgetown Port yesterday. (snip)

When contacted, Minister of Health Donville Inniss said: “The situation was drawn to our attention this afternoon [yesterday] that the vessel was heading to Barbados as its second port of call and that several crew members were ill.

“After consultation with all relevant stakeholders, the decision of the Barbados Government is that this vessel should not make Barbados its next port of call.”

… continue reading this story at The Nation: Sail On By!

Original story…

Ocean Dream Due In Bridgetown – Tuesday, June 16, 2009 8am

Grenadian health authorities on Monday refused to allow the luxury cruise ship “Ocean Dream” to dock after some of the crew and passengers exhibited symptoms of the influenza A (HINI) virus, commonly referred to as Swine Flu.

Public Relations Officer with the Grenada Board of Tourism, Edwin Frank confirmed that the ship, which visits the island on a weekly basis with 1,350 passengers, was refused entry on Monday, but could not say how many persons were affected with the flu-like symptoms…

… from the CBC News article: Grenada turns cruise liner away from port

Barbados Health authorities have been doing much public relations about enhanced employee training and screening at the port and the airport, but when the Ocean Dream arrives in Barbados on Tuesday morning (or maybe before), one person will eventually have to make a decision to turn the ship away or to accept passengers who want to come ashore and see some of Barbados. (Ship’s cruise schedule is here)

If we let the passengers off but Grenada didn’t, does that mean our decision is wrong or theirs? Or can everybody be correct?

Whatever the decision…

Zero risk = zero tourist dollars

BUT… could a bad decision put our families at risk?

I don’t know any of the answers folks, but if July and August are much worse than April, May and June – more than a few businesses might not make it to the high season.

Meanwhile… Let’s go for a cruise on the Pullmantur Ocean Dream…

25 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Disaster, Grenada, Health, Tourism, Travel, Traveling and Tourism