Bizzy keeps eyes on T&T economy

Local business mogul Ralph “Bizzy” Williams said he had seen signs that the Barbados economy was on the rebound, but was worried that developments in Trinidad and Tobago could halt the progress.

At the beginning of December 2015, then Governor of the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago Jawala Rambarran said the twin-island republic had suffered its fourth quarter of negative growth and was officially in recession mainly because of energy sector-related issues. The government challenged this conclusion and later sacked Rambarran.

Williams, who is the chairman of Williams Industries, told Barbados TODAY he hoped that Trinidad and Tobago’s manufacturing sector would do better so that the economy would not go into recession. He said a strong Trinidad economy held tremendous benefits for Barbados.

“The stronger the Trinidad economy is, the better for Barbados. The stronger any economy in the Caribbean is, the better it is for Barbados. United we stand and divided we fall. I always like to know when other economies in the Caribbean are doing well because we are a big exporter. Williams Industries and Barbados will benefit when another economy in the Caribbean that is linked with us doing trade is doing well,” Williams said.

As for his company, Williams said the group had performed significantly better in 2015 when compared to the previous year. Without giving details, he said the company would launch several new activities this year.

“We do have plans for several projects. We are negotiating right now and waiting on planning approvals and so on. We are proceeding with confidence and I am very positive about the future,” added the business magnate.

Williams also pointed out that with the tourism industry “definitely bouncing back”, he believed related industries, including restaurants, would do well this year. “We certainly had a good Christmas season with the shopping malls. I see light at the end of the tunnel. We remain positive,” he said.

The entrepreneur was speaking to Barbados TODAY on the sidelines of a recent masquerade party at Limegrove Lifestyle Centre where Empire star Bryshere Gray was in attendance. In an earlier interview with Barbados TODAY, the Hollywood star, who is known as Hakeem Lyon on the Fox hit series, said he loved Barbados and would be interested in purchasing property here.

Williams said Gray’s visit to, and love for, the island was a definite plus, adding that he was certain the US star would be an ambassador for Barbados.

“I would be delighted to see him buy a house at Apes Hill. If he wanted to play golf or inclined to do that, then that would be an ideal place.” added Williams. (MM)

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