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Date: 23 Oct, 2014
Source: Invest Barbados

Attendees at the recent International Business Week Conference now have a better appreciation of the business environment and opportunities that abound in the Latin American market. Themed, ‘Bridging the Americas: Barbados… Your Gateway’, the Conference generated much interest and highlighted how stronger business relationships can be forged among the jurisdictions.

Several Latin American delegates from Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico and Panama, as well as speakers from the USA, received first-hand exposure to the Barbados jurisdiction and among other things, were informed of the advantages of doing business in and through Barbados. The forum attracted participation of over 200 persons including potential and current investors, tax and business advisors, service providers and government officials. Many attendees described the Conference as a success and noted that Latin America is seen as the new frontier for business, especially presenting significant opportunities for wealth management.

In delivering the Welcome Address, Senator the Honourable Maxine McClean indicated that the Latin American market was rapidly growing and business opportunities abounded within that hemisphere. As such, she emphasised that there was a need for Barbados to “see and seize the opportunities in the countries of Latin America.”

Senator McClean also highlighted the importance of the international business and financial services sector to Barbados’ economic landscape.

“This government’s continuing vision is for the development of Barbados as the international financial and wealth management centre of choice in the Western Hemisphere… The government and the ministry recognise the actual and potential contributions of the international business and financial services sector as a viable foreign exchange earner and job generator for Barbados.”

She mentioned several initiatives geared at further enhancing the sector, including the formulation and development of various international business products. Among them was “the creation of products more suited to civil law countries such as those in Latin America.”

Of its 34 Double Taxation Agreements (DTAs) in force, Barbados currently has DTAs with Cuba, Mexico, Panama and Venezuela, and is in the process of adding to its treaty network other Latin American jurisdictions. Barbados also currently has signed Bilateral Investment Treaties with Cuba and Venezuela.