FDI the Intoxicant of Caribbean Politicians

Prime Minister Dr Denzil Douglas (left) and Premier Vance Amory

Prime Minister Dr Denzil Douglas (left) and Premier Vance Amory

Some interesting developments have been unfolding in the Caribbean in recent years and have increasingly gained public attention of late. Those of us who have an interest in the politics of the region observed the ‘clash’ that occurred in the parliament of St. Kitts and Nevis last week between Prime Minister Dr. Denzil Douglas and Premier Vance Amory of Nevis. The issue which sparked the conflict has to do with “an attempted sale of Crown lands by the Nevis Island Administration to an Iraqi national and funds alleged to have been sent to the federation as payment for the proposed sale” – PM and premier square off in parliament over Nevis petition . Prime Minister Douglas suggested there was alleged fraud associated with the transaction and called for an investigation to which Amory asked the Speaker to have to have the statement withdrawn.

In the build up to the 2008 General Election Barbados Underground posted frequently on the subject of land use policy (or lack of) in Barbados, citing reasons that were also applicable to the region. St. Kitts and Nevis is an example of a Caribbean country that has shifted to a 100% service based economy with tourism and foreign direct investment (FDI) now driving the economy. If we are to listen to some pundits in the local media who are impressed by the progress made by St. Kitts and Nevis, and recommend a similar economic model for Barbados, recent events should alert to the dangers of doing business with foreign investors from non Western countries. There is a saying one cannot have two masters. In the case of Barbados with a heavy reliance on international business anchored in Canada and the United States we should exercise caution.

BU’s read of the region, Guyana included, is that our governments are resigned to implementing a policy of attracting foreign direct investment as a key driver of economic activity. This approach has taken on an urgency in the last five years post meltdown of the global economy because traditional growth structures have been decimated.

Many English speaking islands, including Barbados, have had to take a hit to its human development index because tourism and FDI, key external economic drivers, have had a downturn in recent years. Events of the last six years should have forced our government to radically examine consumption and investment decision making with a view to retooling our economies by utilizing indigenous approaches to encourage growth strategies.

Barbadians have heard that a middle eastern investor has come to the rescue of government to bail the Paradise Beach project – as the case with most government initiatives Barbadians wait patiently for full disclosure about the deal. The Chinese have been very active in the region investing heavily in many of our impoverish economies. It should be evident, even to the dullard, that  a heavy reliance on FDI is not sustainable, and if we were to examine the risk reward experience of St. Kitts and a few others in the region it is clear the political leadership of the region is bereft of wholesome policy initiatives to advance our region. The idea of functional cooperation seems to have fallen by the wayside.

The CLICO and Stanford experience has exposed the lack of a robust oversight culture in the region.  To enter the murky world of foreign investment market from non Western sources, BU remains sceptical to it being a sustainable economic driver. We need not mention the lack of transparency legislation to ‘try’ to keep regional politicians honest.

61 responses to “FDI the Intoxicant of Caribbean Politicians

  1. The Americans are protesting the Burger King move to Canada as a tax loophole.

    A hornet’s nest has been stirred.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/burger-king-backlash-over-whopper-tax-inversion-deal-with-tim-hortons-9690984.html

    Like

  2. Barbados may have to restructure the economy.

    It seems the continued dependence on Foreigners is going to be a problem.

    Like

  3. Hants

    Brilliant

    Can’t trust those damned foreigners

    Like

  4. @ Hants
    It seems the continued dependence on Foreigners is going to be a problem.
    +++++++++++++++++++
    …..that’s the risk we take with making a living off “johns”…

    Like

  5. PLANTATION DEEDS FROM 1926TO 2014 MASSIVE FRAUD LANDTAX BILLS AND NO DEEDS, BARBADOS DLP/BLP MASSIVE PONZI FRAUD

    21 year old student from T&T finds $150,000 worth of cocaine inside her suitcase after flying from Piarco to JFK Airport: This wasn’t the care package she was expecting. An FIT student who flew to the Big Apple to start a new school year arrived at her dorm in Manhattan, opened her suitcase — and discovered 10 pounds of cocaine inside, police sources said.

    The baffled 21-year-old made the stunning discovery after an airplane flight on Friday as she moved into the room and quickly called cops, police sources said. “She said she had no idea how it got there,” a police source said.

    The freaked fashionista handed over the four packages of blow — which had a street value of $150,000, police sources said.
    The woman had just flown from Trinidad and Tobago to JFK Airport — leading authorities to believe a smuggler may have planted the stash in the wrong suitcase, a Port Authority source said. “If her story is true, that’s the most likely scenario . . . There’s no question about it,” the source said.

    Corrupt custom officials, baggage handlers or airport workers — in both the Caribbean and New York — may have teamed up on a scheme to use her as an unwitting drug mule, the Port Authority source said.

    The smugglers may have flubbed the plan by failing to unload the drugs in New York, the Port Authority source said. “Smugglers play the odds … It has been done before to travelers especially in countries where there’s heavy narco-trafficking,” the Port Authority source said.

    Cops are also weighing the possibility she was in on the crime and simply backed out, police sources said. “Maybe she was involved and got cold feet and wanted to get ahead of the story by calling police,” a law-enforcement source said.

    “Or maybe it was something more sinister,” the source said. The source added, “Maybe she didn’t pack her bag, or maybe she really didn’t have anything to do with it.” The student has not been charged, and no arrests have been made. She couldn’t be reached for comment. Read More VIA New York Post http://ow.ly/AJ9Qm

    from Face BOOK

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  6. pieceuhderockyeahright

    First of all I must give thanks to David [BU} for adding the article on Dr. Cornel West and then I give thanks to Dr. Cornel West for giving the interview.

    I gine tief a part dat stick wid de ole man and I quote “… a great leader, a statesperson, doesn’t just occupy middle ground. They occupy higher ground or the moral ground or even sometimes the holy ground. But the middle ground is not the place to go if you’re going to show courage and vision…”

    We are besieged by Caribbean politicians and leaders who, on a number scale of integrity, competence and commitment to nation with left extremity of x1 = -5 representing extremely poor and right extremity of x3 = 5 representing committed, competent and true citizen when we are asked to assign them a value or solve for x2 which is greater than -5 but less than 5, we find ourselves, mathematically challenged and limited to any integer that is less than zero.

    I know when we solved x2 at school, in addition to choices of -5, -4, -3- -2 and -1, we would also have 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 but our values for x2 are figurative representations of men and women, in the case of Bulbados, DLP and BLP-ites that are, unfortunately, less than the possible “middle ground” integer of zero.

    We are left with substandard material, a brand of INTOXICVNTS, who you only got to spell rum fuh, or show dem how to tief de tax payers monies and dem intoxicated with power and graft.

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  7. Authentic Barbados Coffee shop serving Coffee, premium rum coffee shots, and coconut bread,pone rock cakes and rum cake.

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  8. Colonel Buggy

    Exclaimer | August 26, 2014 at 5:58 PM |

    It looks like dear old Mugabe is reaching out to China.
    ………………………………………………………………………….
    Or is it the other way round. China is now determined to conquer what the developed world now refers to as The Third World. Just about every country in the Caribbean has had financial assistance from China, accompanied by Chinese work forces to do any construction necessary. And with , it looks like , the same instructions that God gave to Adams and Eve, “Go forth and multiply .” And these will be the only shots that the Chinese need to fire, in order to conquer the Third World.

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  9. Leland Van Oss

                We, the people who are the government of this nation, and whose ancestors have shed blood and whose young men and women are still giving there lives – must protect the constitutional laws that we hold in reverence that were given by God to are forefathers.that states all of his children are created equal and that means from conception to natural death
    Currently, there our some members of our government who we the people put in office that swore or affirmed to protect are constitutional laws, that has kept this nation free for over 250 hundred and fifty years,and now have broken there oath of office for there own personal agenda.
       Now that we the people demand that all political parties restore our constitutional laws and make these laws unbreakable, with a just punishment for any one that breaks there oath of office.
    We the people over 300 million of us want to know who gave you the right to break our constitutional laws, and how long do you thank are government and are freedom will last with out them.

        Please,   if  you agree with us make copies and give them to your
                        family and friend,s  and elected officials, if  don't throw it away   
    
          Sincerely: We the people of our be loved America.
    
    
              REMBER, NOVEMBER  4 TH IS ELECTION DAY
    

         

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