The business sector in Barbados wants a review of the Social Partnership.
President of the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Lalu Vashwani told his organisation’s monthly luncheon at Hilton Barbados this afternoon that while the chamber unequivocally and wholeheartedly supports the Social Partnership process, “there may be scope to enhance its effectiveness for the future”.
“The prospect that a dispute involving a single employer has the potential to escalate to embrace all employers and national economy without reference to additional steps within the Social Partnership, is a cause for concern,” Vashwani argued, in reference to the industrial dispute between telecommunications company, LIME and the Barbados Workers Union.
He said this situation needed to be addressed by the social partners in a consensual manner, if industrial harmony, which all desired, was to prevail.
“Another recent matter that has the capacity to impede the growth of the private sector is the question of equal opportunity and transparency for all business and/or professional firms in terms of access to fiscal concessions,” added the business leader.
He noted that based on press reports, which to his knowledge had yet to be publicly disputed by Government, several established businesses had questioned the rationale for Government granting a new business, within the existing sector, unique concessions.
The chamber head pointed out that these concessions provided the beneficiary with reduced operating costs relative to other established firms of the same sector.
“The Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry has formally communicated its members’ concerns to the Ministry of Finance so that other businesses with confirmed plans for expansion may have the opportunity to benefit from equal treatment,” Vashwani reported. (EJ)†