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Call for changes at Bridgetown Port


From left: Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite, President of BCBCA Sandra Olton, member of BCBCA Trevor Browne and past president of BCBCA Lalu Vaswani

President of the Barbados Custom Brokers and Clerks Association (BCBCA), Sandra Olton wants a resolution to the numerous delays at the Bridgetown Port.

During her report at the BCBCA’s annual general meeting today, Olton disclosed that the association has had many burdens to bear recently.

“The impasse between the Customs & Excise Department and Barbados Revenue Authority has virtually crippled the IT department and therefore any issue involving this department now takes weeks to be completed instead of a few minutes or even a day,” revealed the president.

She also referred to the long delays in processing documents and clearing cargo, as well as the increase in port charges and the introduction of the demurrage charge hindering business.

Delivering the featured address, Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite contended that a solution must be created to solve the issues between Customs officials and Government.

“The present official or unofficial impasse between Customs and government, with respect to whether or not they should move to the BRA seems to causing issues not only to your association, but to the ordinary man and women in the street and certainly to the business houses who depend on having their goods moved out of the port or into the port as quickly as possible, “ Brathwaite noted.


A section of the audience which was present for today’s AGM

He argued that the situation must be quickly “sorted out” as it was hurting businesses across Barbados.

“We . . . need to see what we can do differently so that people would not be held captive…waiting in the Port for a day to bring a barrel.”

The Attorney General went on to add that there were “serious bottle necks” at the airport that needed to be solved as well.

“We’re having some serious bottlenecks not only at the sea port, but at the airport on afternoons and it does not send a good signal to us locally and to our visitors when they come in and have to wait for an undue length of time in customs and immigration,” said Brathwaite.

“On one hand, while I can appreciate that we need to move people as quickly as possible, we cannot compromise our security and the officers must do what they are supposed to; in particular when customs is such an important revenue generator in this country,” he added. (KK)

7 Responses to Call for changes at Bridgetown Port

  1. Tony Webster January 31, 2016 at 4:58 am

    When I was working in the “B/C’s dept. at Barclays, (handling documents used to clear goods thru customs, (& letters-of-credit )…I saw the monumental struggles, frustrations, screwed-up or incorrect invoices supplied etc, associated with importing goods, stoically borne by our customers, and their customs brokers. This was not only confined to the procedures relating to our port and customs…but also to the many difficulties caused at the EXPORTERS’ end; the shipping, screw-ups by the suppliers and the manufacturers etc etc etc. I swore that whatever I might do with my career, that it would NEVER have anything to do with importing…ANYTHING. Unless that is, if I was to suffer from LOW blood-pressure…and needed to get it pushed right back up! No WAY Jose!! The bottom line is that ALL such inefficiencies, whether originating here, or on the seas, or at the supplier end, ALL push up the end-user costs. Yes, YOU and I PAY for all such ineffiencies. Need any OTHER reason why we need to MASH-Up and BUILD-BACK a better system?

  2. Veroniva Boyce
    Veroniva Boyce January 31, 2016 at 7:51 am

    “We . . . need to see what we can do differently so that people would not be held captive…waiting in the Port for a day to bring a barrel.” WORK.

  3. jrsmith January 31, 2016 at 2:02 pm

    Blame the politicians, blame the government, for peace sake , Barbados is a little island and we cant , find a group of politicians to run it and put it right… don’t they have any shame , all this laying claim to how educated we are, are we. Everything in Barbados fail or failing..

    The world has passed us by, its still living in the past, I think Barbados is in an economic mess, because, of the last 3 decades of political failures and bad management. Barbados can be put right but not by our present government, we need to import the right people to do the job…

  4. Mike January 31, 2016 at 7:55 pm

    Get Donald Trump

  5. jrsmith February 1, 2016 at 6:36 am

    We are celebrating , 50 years of independence , but, ????????? is the people and Barbados ,ready for the fifty first .. today is bad what tomorrow is going to be like…

  6. Observer February 1, 2016 at 9:01 am

    Could anyone explain to me why you have to jump from window to window to receive service in the port why can’t one window complete the transaction it’s a waste of people time and taxpayers money

  7. jrsmith February 1, 2016 at 3:39 pm

    @, Observer, hail, hail, I had the same problem, must add ,bad management no management , those workers ,have no one to answer to, there are political jobs, if you are a party member, whether you are capable or not ,the job’s yours…

    What I want to know is they anyone in the Bridgetown port, the same goes for Sir Grantley…and as for security, non existent… 50 years of independence, ????????? are we ready for the fifty first… chance..


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