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Better business plan

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart and Lalu Vashwani of the BCCI.

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart and Lalu Vashwani of the BCCI.

Plans are on stream to bolster the international business sector to make Barbados a better place to do business, and legislation will be introduced to improve the product offerings.

This was disclosed by Prime Minister Freundel Stuart as he addressed yesterday’s business luncheon of the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry yesterday, at the Hilton Barbados.

Stuart said that Government would continue to work on approximately 20 new double taxation treaties to give the country “a critical mass of treaties in each major area of the world”. He added that there were also plans to negotiate additional bilateral investment treaties to complement existing double taxation agreements.

Furthermore, he told those in attendance that in order to deal proactively with the new Foreign Accounts Tax Compliance Act legislation in the US, Government would negotiate with that country “so as to reduce the cost to and impact on Barbados of this legislation”.

He added: “All of the government departments and agencies that interface with the international business sector will be provided with the necessary resources and systems to bring their responsiveness to the sector’s needs up to the best standards, while preserving the integrity of the domicile.”

Stuart indicated that the agencies involved would include the Corporate Affairs and Intellectual Property Office, the Immigration Department, the Inland Revenue Department, the International Business Division, the Financial Services Commission, the Central Bank of Barbados and the Chief Parliamentary Counsel’s Office.

In addition, he said that Invest Barbados would “intensify promotion of the country as a domicile through which investment is done, through more road shows into those markets with the most potential”. He also disclosed that there would be more face-to-face meetings with service providers and potential clients in those markets, and “closer contact with relevant government agencies in countries from which our business comes”.

Turning attention to tourism, Stuart noted that there were big plans for that sector. He indicated that during the course of the next few months, construction work would start on the Pierhead marina for luxury yachts and the new Bridgetown cruise pier so as to separate cruise ships from cargo vessel operations.

“Both of these projects will include the reclamation of land to be developed into mixed-use tourism establishments. We will give renewed vigour to the Redevelopment of Bridgetown, and provide support for the restoration of our heritage assets and creation of incentive programmes to sustain these assets”, the Prime Minister declared.

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