It’s madness!

Paul knocks EPA and other trade agreements

One of the island’s leading spokesmen for the agricultural sector has all but dismissed as “mad intuition” the decision by Barbados and the Caribbean to sign onto some key international protocols.

Chief Executive Officer of the Barbados Agricultural Society (BAS) James Paul is ruing in particular, World Trade Organization (WTO) rules and the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with Europe, both of which he claims are hurting the local sector.

“Those two organizations have constrained the ability of governments to protect sectors that are vulnerable. The United States of America signed onto the WTO, but they ensured that their agricultural sector is protected. The Europeans did the same thing and protected their agricultural sector. The Japanese also protected their rice industry,” Paul told journalists at a news conference today at the BAS headquarters on Beckles Road, St Michael.

The Government backbencher charged that Caribbean governments were the only ones that had “this mad intuition” to sign onto “agreements that basically undermined their ability to protect the very sector that is the key to preserving the health of the individual territories”.

Paul called for the agreements to be re-negotiated, insisting they were not working for the region, which he said was being
forced to import food items that can be produced here.

The Member of Parliament for St Michael West Central blamed the problem on globalization, which he described as “one of the single biggest threats to the welfare of the people around the world”, contending that the two main political parties in the United Kingdom were adopting anti-globalization stands.

“They have now come to that realization. Caribbean governments and some economists in the region are the only people who seem to think that globalization is the answer to the world’s economic woes,” Paul said as he announced that the BAS had accessed $200, 000 from the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation, a joint international institution of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States and the European Union, to help farmers increase production through the use of modern technologies.

Paul said the project will include a seven-month training programme scheduled to be completed by the end of this year, with one of the aims being to improve the consistency with which farmers supply products to major supermarkets, hotels, restaurants and the school meals service.

“We at the BAS are trying to expand on that because one of the limiting factors is the inconsistency in the production of commodities to the outlets. Through the training workshops we are going to try to achieve greater consistency in production by addressing the constraining factors. By the end of the year we hope to witness an increase in the production of onions, cucumbers, lettuce, fruits and vegetables,” Paul said. (NC)

10 Responses to It’s madness!

  1. Tony Webster May 30, 2017 at 5:59 am

    Mr. Paul, I admire your passion for all things agricultural…but not quite as much as I honor my late Grandfather’s entrepreneurial spirit, when , born in St.John with nothing but spit in his mouth, he strove agriculturally, and ended up owning Wildey, Upton, and Kent estates…all purchased on loans from one Mr. “H.O” Emtage, and all repaid to the cent, only for government to grab hold of these, in the late 60’s , and 70’s…at the point of a (proverbial) gun, “for the greater public good”.

    However, please get real: when Barbados sneezes, the rest of the world does NOT ketch a cold.

  2. Sheron Inniss May 30, 2017 at 6:24 am

    Mr Webster you hit the nail on the head. I have also thought for the longest time that globalization is one of the roads to destruction for the Caribbean.

  3. Alex Alleyne May 30, 2017 at 8:48 am

    Just look at what happen to the Caribbean Banana Crop. Most of these NEW CARICOM LEADERS go into these things “head down like a bull”.
    Gone and will never return are the Days of ours true Leaders
    Manley , Barrow , Burnham , and Williams. Those guys are crying tears …”buckets uh drop”.

  4. Milli Watt May 30, 2017 at 9:35 am

    free trip, free eats, free drinks, free pu$$^ and this is the result. Don’t know what Paul surprise bout. draw de money get de pension build some apartment and go into retirement (I mean opposition)

  5. Peter May 30, 2017 at 11:19 am

    James Paul needs to wake up and smell the coffee. He has done absolutely NOTHING to ensure a profitable Agricultural success nin Barbados. Here’s an Idea. Guyana has miles upon miles of unused agriculture land. Why can’t Stuart and you negotiate with President David Granger to lease 100 sq miles of this deep soil well irrigated land, re-lease it to both Guyanese and Bajan farmers. They in turn can plant a wide range of tropical exotic fruits and vegetables, such as tomatoes, pineapples, pigeon peas, okras, peppers, and the whole lot. Even poultry, Black belly lamb and pigs, establish processing plants to produce canned fruits, vegetables and poultry and other meat products. These items can be shipped into Barbados duty free and the plants can be powered by offshore 10 megawatts wind turbines which can also power all our hotels, Instead of importing branded canned food stuff from Del Monte, IGA, Valrico, Ragu’ Heinz, Bush and all those so called exotic imported brands which drains our economy. Even Matouks and Grace Barbados through this initiative can earn over US$ 1 Billion a year in revenue. Ok How will we ship it to Barbados? Through a high speed ferry service. check my following comment for details on that ferry service.

    • Leroy May 30, 2017 at 2:44 pm

      Peter, that actually calls for planning and work, neither of which these idiots have the stomach to do.

  6. Sylvie May 30, 2017 at 11:50 am

    Once more the CEO of the BAS is speaking after the fact.Why wait til the deed is done to comment? After being part of the planning​,an opinion now is a waste of time.

  7. Peter May 30, 2017 at 11:51 am

    Super Ferry…. click on
    Watch this video clip and apply this daily service to Barbados and Guyana. There are at least 12 other ferry services of this kind in operation around the world. in Australia, New Zealand Ireland, the Canary Islands in the Hawaii Islands where inter island airport is a thing of the past. This ferry can carry over 1000 passengers, and over 100 vehicles and about 50 containers. A little innovation can easily seat another 1,000 passengers, no vehicles and 150 Alluminium containers. Passengers taking this three hour ride will do so in first class air condition comfort plus with restaurant and shopping on board. 1 one-way trip will use about$3,000.00 BDS dollars in fuel costs. Imagine 2,000 passengers using this service will earn the ferry’s owners close to $200,000 .00 per trip plus containers shipping costs which aan be 2 hundred dollars a pop. Of course the passenger cost is BDS$ 100.00 one way. Less than half that of LIAT with up to two suitcases plus one carry on bag. This will vastly enhance regional integration, trade and tourism. Oops. WAKE UP Mr. James Paul Talk to Fruendel and Richard and Chris and the Commanders at George Street. CLICL or go to YouTube and type in…… High speed Ferries. Blow your minds. Barbados is a SLEEPING GIANT oh foe goodness sakes wake up and do something positive…

  8. Massiah Street May 30, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    Peter: re your note on inter-island Ferries, thanks to the French government and French private enterprise here is what Guadeloupe, Dominica, Martinique and St. Lucia have been enjoying for the past 30 years with ever bigger ferries and daily service:

  9. F.A.Rudder June 1, 2017 at 10:21 am

    A very good topic Mr Paul! Something that I’ve mentioned previously; the protectionism process written into trade agreements. One area of produce and production is the coconut farming of which Barbados needs an actual 44 acres to carry the consumption process into the next twenty years. We have to be proactive rather than reactive in our agruculture sector. Coconut product consumption is on an incline globally!


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