Rubis gives economy vote of confidence

The Barbados economy has been given a vote of confidence by the  France-based petroleum company Rubis, which is involved in a legal battle with Government over the sale of the island’s only oil terminal facility to the Sol Group.

Chief Executive Officer of Rubis West Indies Limited Mauricio Nicholls told Barbados TODAY his company remained confident in the Barbados economy despite its challenges.

With high debt, dwindling foreign reserves and multiple downgrades, Government has been struggling to bring the economy from the brink.

However, Nicholls suggested Rubis was unperturbed, and had invested about US$100 million here since taking over the Texaco assets owned by Chevron six years ago.

The company is currently constructing an $11 million state-of-the-art headquarters for the Caribbean in Welches, St Thomas, ending years of leasing in Spring Garden.

“I think that Barbados has been going through difficult economic times but I see some signs that there are some investments coming into the country, and it is investments that bring employment and bring in additional level of activities,” Nicholls said.

“I am hopeful that will continue and as it continues the economy will continue to see some growth. Last year the economy saw some growth. Hopefully that growth will continue and if there is more investment and that investment accelerates there will be even more growth in the future. So we are always optimistic about the future and we are seeing some signs that the economy is picking up some speed,” he added.

13 Responses to Rubis gives economy vote of confidence

  1. Arthur Collymore
    Arthur Collymore April 7, 2017 at 7:20 am

    The assesment of every rich investor with money to pump into a strugling economy from which to reap super profits. Barbados would appear attractive for investment by those priviledged to negotiate generous concessions in a climate, while at present not conducive, that will improve next year when the anticipated change comes.

  2. Dave Person
    Dave Person April 7, 2017 at 8:31 am

    all this talk about natural gas price hikes

  3. Jennifer April 7, 2017 at 9:32 am

    @Arthur C – Well said. If I was in a position like Rubis I would say the same thing too. Get that terminal too. I don’t care one way or the other, both Rubis and SOL are a cut from the same cloth. Leave the plantation lot at the pumps.

  4. Alex Alleyne April 7, 2017 at 9:44 am

    Wioud anyone in their right mind expect to hear anything different from this guy who see “gold/diamonds” coming his way out of the oil deal with Government.
    Most of us has replaced fear with knowledge.

    • Jennifer April 7, 2017 at 10:03 am

      Alex – well said. Mind you I do not blame RUBIS or any of them either. What has happened to this people is that they have become COMPLACENT, COMPLIANT, AND COMFORTABLE in their oppression and likes being down in that yard waiting for the corn. The have replaced INSIGHT and KNOWLEDGE with an EDUCATION system which only allows them to fall into the same PLANTATION BOAT which is now very wide and NEVER overcrowded. They have not not learned, or EXTRAPOLATED any thing from the past. So let the EAGLES EAT.

  5. Bevan Green April 7, 2017 at 11:17 am


  6. Luis Parrales April 7, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    In my point of view Barbados has to get clever as well as talented investments .

    Barbidians need to work so hard in order to will have better times.

  7. tsquires April 7, 2017 at 6:24 pm

    Ms. Jennifer you are usually very erudite, however this time you have made the classic mistake, that continues to befuddle most people of colour, that of being well learned but mis-educated.

  8. Jennifer April 8, 2017 at 12:02 am

    @tsquires – I am not bothered at all as time is very short. So the Eagles can eat as much as they want. All will be revealed soon. Since you are awake you would know this and it was all designed by the most high of Jacob. You will only see if you are allowed to see.

  9. Romeo Crowell April 8, 2017 at 11:09 pm

    THE foreign exchange and raw material challenges faced by local ice cream manufacturer Flavorite Foods Ltd are causing repercussions around the region, including at BICO Ltd, the Flavorite distributor in Barbados.

    The company says it now has to look elsewhere for certain products.

    The situation has also led BICO to review its capabilities as a supplier to regional ice cream wholesalers, BICO said in a statement from its Barbados office Wednesday. But executive chairman of BICO Edwin Thirlwell says the company is prepared and capable of filling the breach.

    Thirlwell said BICO would be shortly receiving a shipment from another source, that would somewhat alleviate the shortage of some products and flavours. He noted that with the company’s extensive HACCP compliant deep frozen facilities at its Harbour Cold Store, BICO was perhaps in a better position than other distributors to overcome the stock-out issues.

    “Our Harbour Cold Store facility is very extensive so we are generally able to hold larger stocks than most regional distributors would, and we are HACCP compliant. So we definitely have the capability to assist other regional ice cream distributors, including in Trinidad and Tobago,” Thirlwell said.

    Consumer complaints

    BICO is one of several regional ice cream distributors which since August 2016, has been experiencing shortfalls in supply of certain flavours manufactured by Flavorite Foods, the company said. Thirlwell said with no let-up in the shortages and consumer complaints mounting, BICO had been forced to look to alternative manufacturers, replacing Flavorite flavours with local BICO product.

    “We took steps to ensure that our customers were less likely to be impacted by Flavorite’s inability to supply and we expect to be in a position to supply any missing favourite products and flavours with alternatives, over the next few weeks. The current problem is not only in Trinidad, but around the region. Some regional wholesalers have reached out to us and where we can, we will assist them with supplies,” he said.

    Noting that BICO has enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship with Flavorite for several years, Thirlwell said he hopes that the situation will return to normal when production resumes at Flavorite. Stone Street Capital, chaired by local businessman and former CL Financial executive Andre Monteil, is the 100 per cent owner of Flavorite Foods. Monteil confirmed last month that the unavailability of foreign exchange was taking a toll on raw material imports Flavorite needed.

    “Didn’t the Finance Minister talk about this last week? Manufacturers need foreign exchange to get raw material,” he said, adding that Flavorite lollies were still available.

  10. Romeo Crowell April 8, 2017 at 11:26 pm

    Ladies and gentlemen, can we talk about how we can help Barbados?
    The problems we face are not unique to the Barbados, the Caribbean our the world and I am confident Barbados is still one of the best places to live, work, study and raise a family.
    Trinidad has ten times more money than Barbados and their Manufacturers cannot get foreign exchange to purchase raw materials
    I met a chap recently who set up a business in Trinidad few years ago and said recently he was force to sell his products in us currency get money out of Trinidad to purchase raw materials

  11. Romeo Crowell April 8, 2017 at 11:44 pm

    I am even more amaze to see that this same Bico would like to take up Barbados’s little foreign exchange and use it to import coconut water….. and compete with our indigenous product.
    I believe any right thinking Barbadian can see that this market is serviced mostly by young individuals looking to earn a living away from crime.
    Can you imagine what could happen if we permit this importation to become a norm..

  12. Romeo Crowell April 8, 2017 at 11:57 pm

    If half of the time we spend talking about what is going wrong on how we can fix the problems practically and not politically we would be shock at the confidence it will generate in our people.


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