On board


Outspoken Government minister Donville Inniss has taken the strongest position yet from among the Freundel Stuart administration, in support of privatization of state enterprises.

In fact, the Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development this morning said Government should move swiftly to place many of these services in the hands of the private sector.

The denationalization of Government agencies and services was a contentious issue in the campaign leading up to the 2013 general election. At that time the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) had accused the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) of scheming to go the route of privatization, something the DLP said then it would not do.

However, the administration’s position has become murkier since the election, as several economists, including former Prime Minister Owen Arthur, advised Stuart to sell the State assets.

In an address at the opening of the International Business Week conference at the Hilton Barbados Resort this morning, Inniss left no doubt where he stood on the matter, suggesting his position was at odds with that of Government.

“My simple position is that the State must move with greater alacrity to devolve itself of some of the services and goods it currently provides and let a bolder, more imaginative and efficient private enterprise provide such services. I hold the view that opportunities abound for our citizens, especially our young people, when the State becomes a facilitator and regulator and not the provider of first resort in an economy. Perhaps there is a philosophical divide here, but let there be no doubt as to where this minister stands on this matter,” an emphatic Inniss said.

When Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler announced in April that the sale of the Barbados National Terminal Company Limited was all but complete, with Government simply “waiting on the cheque” to consummate the deal, it seemed to suggest that the Stuart administration had taken the first step towards selling some assets.

Nothing had happened since, until the Sanitation Service Authority last week began outsourcing some of its garbage collection services to private waste haulers, in what both the trade union movement and the BLP said was privatization via the backdoor.

Inniss today lashed out at the critics of both the SSA deal and privatization in general, some of whom he described as “wannabe scholars”.

“When I see scholars and wannabe scholars, as well as labour leaders, making a ruckus about the State engaging our domestic private sector to assist in collecting garbage, I shudder.

“Here in Barbados we must seriously respect and accept the role of the private sector in economic and social development. This anti-private sector sentiment that raises its ugly head from time to time under the guise of a view that the State must do more, be more involved and that it is better to tax us all to pay for inefficiencies, is a view that needs to be relegated to the dustbin of irrelevance,” Inniss told the gathering of international business sector officials.

Speaking on the theme, Weathering the Perfect Storm: Explore, Evolve and Adapt, the minister said the need for change was as urgent for the SSA as it was for the International Business and Financial Services (IBFS) sector, “because it can speak volume to the re-establishment of a large, inefficient and expensive bureaucracy that will smother our otherwise vibrant private sector”.


16 Responses to On board

  1. Colette Felix
    Colette Felix October 21, 2016 at 3:33 am


  2. Charles Atkins
    Charles Atkins October 21, 2016 at 3:34 am

    Good Sir I am willing to support you 100%. All you now need do is; raise every Barbadian’s standard of living to match yours, abolish every form of taxation and let the business people who you give everything to, pay you.
    It is obvious that no politician is the servant of the people, therefore let those whose house you maintain reward you and free the poor people who are no longer able to carry your heavy load.

  3. Tony Webster October 21, 2016 at 5:21 am

    @Charles Atkins: The spectre of suspicions as yours, will always haunt us. You are however silent on the “best” solution out of this mess… this Rocky gully of no end. What is your solution? Re-create the B.M.C. supermarkets to “lower the cost of living”… when in reality, the B.M.C. experiment was a total disaster for the taxpayers who had to throw cash at all their losses, every year, whilst there were “fatted calves” aplenty working all within these socialist dream-machines? Or would you prefer the other glorious Co-Op supermarket at Silver Hill type of “solution”??

    When it’s not broken, don’t fix it, but when when a blind man could see we have arrived at Rocky Gully , with our “leaders” blind to these life-threatening diseases, let alone implementing real, workable solutions, ….someone GOTTA reach out and grasp the nettles. Or else, we shall just throw away all gains made …not only since 1966…but since this place was inhabited by human beings.

    This Blessed Rock is in a state of imminent mortal peril, Sir. For God’s sake- and that of our children…WAKE UP!….Yes, and doan forget to pray, else we replace one bunch of jokers…wid anuthuh.

  4. Hal Austin October 21, 2016 at 5:56 am

    Is Inniss the only proof we need that you do not have to be terribly bright to be a Barbadian politician? Has he got the intelligence to talk and talk at the same time? Plse voters, remove this idiot from public life.

  5. Harry October 21, 2016 at 7:08 am

    Campaign promise – no privatization …………… at least the bus fare has not gone up as yet……..

  6. Phil October 21, 2016 at 10:04 am

    Fact: Barbados’ deficit is at 163% of its GDP. Both Guyana and Jamaica nationalized all their privately owned entities. Both locally and overseas owned. They had no skilled manpower to operate them. so their deficit went to 165% and 167% of their GDP. Their only move to survive was to the IMF. the long and short was they were forced to devalue. Where are they today? We have no natural resources yet. so we are doing a reverse. But I dare say only certain entities should be privatized One CBC comes to mind. Do we really need 30 politicians to sit in parliament? We should drop VAT all together, and impose an OTC (Over The Counter) sales tax. All extra regional imported goods, which CANNOT be produced regionally or locally, pre fab or otherwise – 15%. All goods produced regionally from scratch, – 12.5%. All products produced solely in Barbados from scratch 9%. All raw materials brought into Barbados to produce products for local use and exported as a finished product, – 15% duty. This will stimulate more local production and sales of locally produced items. Manufacturing will grow, more people will be involved. Starting this November, our 50th anniversary and every November after that, All PAYE deductions are waived. This will translate to a lot more local spending especially for Christmas, more money in circulation, A vibrant push for our retail sector and going into the new year More employment, which will be followed by a vibrant tourist season Now, Barbados’ deficit today stands at an alarming 163% of our GDP. Very dangerously close to Guyana and Jamaica who were forced to go to the IMF> I hope Mr. LaTouche who strongly favors the IMF will note this. and tell us exactly how we will recover and pay back our loan from them without an agreement to do as they say, Oh he will say, ” So I was wrong.” Note here all. I am not criticizing or complaining. I am offering a suggestion. Bring LIAT to Barbados. Forget the ANU political friendship Make Barbados the hub. Offer international tourists 1,2 and weekend return trips to other Caribbean destinations. Look at nature tourism to Guyana, Dominica, Trinidad – careful there, – Gold Diamond and other gem stones purchasing is rampant in Guyana at Bartica. They export US$ 3 Billion in unsmuggled gold per year. Import vegetables duty free from Guyana start a canned food processing plant. Pineapples, Papaya, Okras, Peas and beans, sliced carrots and beets. plus a whole lot more. Instead of importing from Canada and such places, stuff from Dole, DelMonte IGA and those expensive brands. Come on BMA Private investor sector, Govt. Agro processing division under the Barbados Agriculture Society, Go Barbados Go. you’re 50 years old now. Shoe your Pride and Industry

    • Leroy October 21, 2016 at 7:57 pm

      All good but politicians rather the country die than any of the above which involves actual work, planning and implementation, easy way out,, sell what ya have and increase taxes,,lol stupid politicians they are.

  7. Sunshine Sunny Shine October 21, 2016 at 11:55 am

    I hope no one pays this fool any mind. His government engage the finances of Barbados in a bunch of ignorance. Then they turn around and tax the crap out of bajans and up till now no one knows what exactly, besides paying back loans, where the rest is going. This man is a real real idiot here. Go ahead and privatise everything, I hope bajans understand what that means.

  8. Hal Austin October 21, 2016 at 12:05 pm


    Good arguments. But if the tax take is reduced, then spending also has to b reduced (austerity).
    To simple things: we can privatise without selling everything to Bizzy or COW; how about management buy outs?
    There are 30000 people on the government pay roll, this can be reduced by re-training some workers, and turning others in to companies along with a five year govt contract to set them off ie the Government Printery. The list goes on. Govts need things printed, but they do not have to own the printery.
    Equally, with modern computers, why do we need maids and stenographers in govt departments?


  9. Phil October 21, 2016 at 1:12 pm

    Sunny sunshine, You were referring to Donville. If so say so. If you’re referring to me as an idiot, then Why don’t you lay some ideas on the table that prove you are really interested in developing Barbados, and not just criticizing, complaining and condemning. Go ahead, show us what a fool you’re not. If I am wrong then I humbly apologize. Carry on

    • Sunshine Sunny Shine October 21, 2016 at 3:37 pm

      Referring to you? What for. My comments are for Donville Inniss. I have not even read what you wrote. I am accustom to lambasting only two people who write on blogs, and this blog is surely not the blog where I lambast those two people. So chill out boy. As for ideas, I already tendered a lot of them. What sense does it make when these dictators do not listen. Later.

  10. Bobo October 21, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    Phil–good research- ”congrats” you should be leading my beloved country Barbados.

  11. Asteroidminer October 21, 2016 at 2:26 pm

    Privatization is a good mechanism yes. However how this is done is tremendously important for the future of our country. Management buyouts to a wide range of new entrepreneurs is a good way to go. MBOs would reduce the size of the public sector fairly. Giving a chance to many. It is fairer and better for our country if public assets and accumulated wealth is spread across the economy and society. The elite in countries across the world are running onto trouble with their societies because economic resources are not being allocated by the prevailing economic systems across the society fairly. So once privatization is not used as a mechanism to concentrate wealth and assets in the hands of a few – then fair play and bring it on. If privatization results in concentration of ownership and unfairness then I am afraid it won’t work., and before the critics come saying those with lots of accumulated wealth and resources are the best qualified……What is the underlying philosophy of this country and society? fairness and opportunity for all or maximum systematic exploitation? I encourage our leaders to be wise and devise solutions for fairness and efficiency.

  12. Phil October 21, 2016 at 4:16 pm

    Thanks Bobo. I am a business developer. I cannot be a Prime Minister because I will be a micro manager. Every single one of my ministers will be held accountable for their undertaking. I will pledge to this nation a state of the country address every three months. There will be no favoritism. so I shall have no friends. My country shall always come first. Bobo, I have a business plan that will earn this country over US$ dollars 6 Billion per year in revenue. You think Singapore making money? wait till you see my plan. I’m sorry but the other island in the Caribbean will be envious and jealous. Talk to me Bobo You know me too well and too long. If I am wrong, tell me.

  13. Tony Webster October 21, 2016 at 4:43 pm

    @Phil: please go to front of class….and stay there. Solid, novel AND practical stuff indeed!
    Truth is, there is no shortage of excellent, practical socio-economic solutions being offered publicly….all the time. But those relevant folks are too busy….warming up the election machinery, to note, far less to run with them.

  14. phil October 21, 2016 at 8:28 pm

    Thanks Mr. Webster and Sunny sunshine.


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