Barbados has a long and distinguished history of welcoming foreign investment. Although the promotional strategy has evolved over the years, successive governments have remained committed to creating an environment conducive to the attraction of international business and foreign direct investment (FDI) in the main productive sectors of manufacturing, ICT and financial services.
The establishment of the Barbados Development Board in 1956, followed in the 60s by the creation of specialist investment promotion agencies, signalled a more strategic approach to the diversification of the Barbados economy through the encouragement of foreign investment in specific industries. The adoption of the Sir Arthur Lewis model of ‘industrialisation by invitation’ during the 70s and 80s led to one of the more successful periods of economic growth in the island’s history. Through the creation of a welcoming, investor friendly environment characterized by economic, political and social stability, availability of skilled human resources, well-developed infrastructure and supported by attractive fiscal incentives, Barbados played a key role in the global expansion of manufacturing enterprises such as Intel Corporation, TRW and Playtex Corporation, among others.
Written by Jannette Babb, Director, Research & Development (Ag.), Invest Barbados;