Stop feting and work

Fraser: Better attitude needed to benefit from EPA

Barbadians need to stop feting and start working if they hope to benefit from the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union.

Independent Senator Professor Henry Fraser offered this advice to Barbadians today in the Upper Chamber while speaking on the EPA between Europe and CARIFORUM – the grouping that links the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) with the Dominican Republic.

Condemning the decline in Barbados’ work ethic in recent years, Fraser said: “I rise to support the Bill, but with some caution, because while the Leader of Government Business in the Senate has emphasised the importance of this legislation, facilitating the transition from an unfair colonial situation between us and our European friends, the transition to a profitable relationship with CARICOM countries, including Barbados, will only be effective if we stop feting and start working in this country.

He stressed that “the only way we can exploit the arrangements in this Bill is if we cease to try to emulate our Trinidadian cousins and friends and become the party nation of the Caribbean and start working again.

Senator Professor Henry Fraser
Senator Professor Henry Fraser

“We built our reputation as a solid country with a sober, Christian, hard working people who could be trusted to give an honest day’s work for a fair day’s pay.

“That is not what we have been seeing [in recent] times,” lamented Fraser.

He said Barbados’ reputation as manufacturers of “the best sugar in the world” had been lost to Mauritius “whose sugar in profitable small packages has completely dominated the British and other markets, while we have sat back and allowed our sugar to be given away to the British to be refined and sold back to us.

“This approach to manufacturing must stop if we are to exploit this arrangement. If we go back in time we exported sugar, we exported rum and mahogany. Our mahogany trees were in demand in the British market, because it was one of the finest hardwoods for the manufacture of furniture,” he noted.

The independent senator further lamented the fact that Barbados has become a country of acres of river tamarind, shack-shack and other trees that have no commercial value.

Fraser, who is a heritage consultant, suggested that Barbadians should be planting large tracts of land in mahogany trees for export, instead of allowing land to run to ruin.

Noting that Barbados produces high quality hot sauce, which is now produced by Costa Rica, Fraser contended that like Heinz Tomato Ketchup, Barbadian hot sauce should be found on every table around the world.


13 Responses to Stop feting and work

  1. Bobby Gilkes
    Bobby Gilkes July 24, 2014 at 6:55 am

    Work where ………..

  2. Angus B Post
    Angus B Post July 24, 2014 at 6:57 am

    fetes doan be gine on during work….if people were paid as good as you lot inparliment maybe they would…god knows none of u politicians r

  3. Emma St.John
    Emma St.John July 24, 2014 at 7:25 am

    I work to pay my bills, provide food and clothes and save a little. If I chose to party, go to dinner and generally enjoy what is left back, it is my business sir. I don’t tell you how to spend yours – I don’t see why you should tell me how to spend mine.

  4. Sarah V July 24, 2014 at 9:29 am

    It’s a fete accompli, Dr. Fraser.

  5. Gregg July 24, 2014 at 10:10 am

    During slavery the slave masters prevented us from beating drums and singing then it was the whip and other punishment. Now they they don’t want you to enjoy your self and work in there companies, pay high taxes high debt (the whip)… Time we learn to work for ourselves……

  6. marlon July 24, 2014 at 12:06 pm

    the senator obviously misses the point on the EPA.

    From my recollection the EPA is about refocusing the region into Services.

    The regions biggest asset is our cultural industry. We need to learn how to better package it to generate more revenue from our cultural products.

    We have exported West Indian carnival all over, Calypso Cricket, T20 Cricket was refined in the region and reexported to the world; and other readers can site more examples…

    Senator yes we can plant trees and sell sugar at premium proce but nothing can stop the spirit of the West Indian- its a cultural thing that others want to identify and we can sell that experience

  7. kelvin July 24, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    I totally agree wid de man , Bajan work ethics are very low and poor customer service, da is why de money gine down de drain and when ya hear de shout it gine be $1US = $6BDS and we gine buying everything from overseas . Time for we go get this place back in order. WORK FIRST PLAY AFTER.

  8. Tarzania Hogson Burnett July 24, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    I take Dr Fraser’s point but he is talking to the wrong people. It is not the people who fete that have sat back and allowed our economic patrimony to fritter away. He should be talking to the business oligarchs who don’t give a damn as long as they can import.


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