Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Inniss looks to global business


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THE INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS and financial services sector will turn around Barbados’ economy, says Minister of Commerce, Industry and International Business, Donville Inniss.
However, he believes the island needs to continue implementing good regulatory standards and removing administrative burdens for investors.
“The impact of good regulation and efficient regulatory institutions on economic growth will depend on both the efficiency of the regulatory body, the regulatory policies and instruments that are used and the quality of the governance processes that are practised.
“Further, administrative barriers can be critical to investment decisions on locations since they immediately affect the bottom line and project timing,” he said. Inniss was speaking on Monday during the opening of a Meet The Regulators town hall meeting hosted by his ministry and the Barbados International Business Association.
During the event at the Bagnall’s Point Gallery in Pelican Village, he noted that the removal of administrative burdens to investment was critical to improving investment inflows.
However, he said the burdens were sometimes difficult to reduce.
“Reforming procedures are often met with resistance because of refusal and active hostility to change which often slows down and in some cases stops processes completely.”
He added figures could be made available “shortly” to show that business in the sector  had increased last year.
However, he said industry players should not rest on their laurels and urged public officers present to listen to the views of practitioners.
“At the end of the day there is nothing more frustrating and annoying, as a practitioner in the industry, [than] to have inconsistency in the application of rules and regulations, to have ambiguity and to have a general feeling of not being welcome in this jurisdiction.
“The reality about it is that there are other places where people can choose to go to do business.”
Inniss therefore called on public officers ensure that they “turn around applications in a matter of hours and not in a matter of weeks or months”, and where that could not be done, that there was “reasonable explanation” given to applicants. (NB)


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