The Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry held its first business luncheon for 2015, on Wednesday, January 28, at the Hilton Barbados Resort.
A large audience comprising business executives from the agricultural, manufacturing, tourism, international business, distributive, retail and commercial services sectors, among others, attended to hear the Prime Minister deliver his annual address to Barbados’ business community.
During his address, the Prime Minister indicated that Barbados continued to provide an enabling business environment, which was still adequately regulated. He noted that the government’s role “should be to create the kind of operating environment in which the enterprise, the initiative and the innovation of the private sector can flourish with uninhibited vigour.” He further added that, “Facilitation and the improvement of our competitiveness are non-negotiable commitments of the government of Barbados.”
Prime Minister Stuart also defended Barbados’ fixed exchange rate, which is currently pegged to the US dollar. He noted that for the last 40 years the exchange rate “has served us well.” He therefore reiterated that the Barbados government “will, through its policy choices, continue to make the preservation of that exchange rate a matter of continuing priority.”
A number of investment prospects, some of which are already in train, and which are poised to boost Barbados’ economy, are on the horizon. The Prime Minister acknowledged that this was testimony to the “confidence” in which investors continued to place in Barbados “for the year 2015 and beyond.”
President of the BCCI, Tracey Shuffler delivered welcome remarks at the luncheon, while Executive Director, Lisa Gale gave brief introductory remarks.