Worse shape ever

Economy has never been this low, warns Straughn

Economist Ryan Straughn is cautioning the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) that if it wins the next election, it will inherit an economy that is in worse shape than when the BLP left office in 2008.

Delivering the Eighth Tom Adams Memorial lecture last night, Straughn, who is the BLP’s Christ Church East Central candidate, said while successive BLP administrations had presided over economic activity since 1976, the current Democratic Labour Party (DLP) regime had effectively reversed the gains that were previously made.

Members of the audience at the BWU auditorium for the Eighth Tom Adams Memorial lecture.

“With the exception of 2008, the current DLP Government has failed miserably to reproduce the level of economic activity the Barbados Labour Party handed to them in 2008,” Straughn told the gathering of mainly Opposition supporters in the Hugh Springer Auditorium of the Barbados Workers’ Union headquarters.

Economist Ryan Straughn delivering the Eighth Tom Adams Memorial Lecture last night.

“So far, up to 2016, some $5.5 billion has been eroded from the economic base of Barbados,” he added.

The lecture, held in honour of the island’s second prime minister, was entitled Transforming Barbados’ economy in an increasingly uncertain world: Lessons from Tom Adams for the 21st century.

In distinguishing the track record of the BLP from that of the DLP, Straughn relied on data from the Caribbean Regional Technical Assistance Centre and Central Bank of Barbados, along with his own calculations, to show that the current administration had bucked the growth trend for Barbados with its economic figures now receding into the negative column.   

The former macro-economic modeling specialist at the Central Bank of Barbados and current financial consultant said the BLP, led by Adams, had introduced a period of accelerated growth when it took office in 1976.

“The Barbados Labour Party successfully reproduced that level of economic activity every year during its post-independence  administration under Tom Adams. But more importantly it added approximately $7.5 billion in new economic activity over the ten years,” Straughn said.

“So we set a new bar, we raised the bar,” he argued, while noting that despite registering such growth, the BLP still lost the government in 1986.

Rating the succeeding DLP administration’s performance, he said it was “decent” at first but then it struggled towards the end of its tenure.

“The DLP created $4.2 billion in new economic activity above that of the Barbados Labour Party. [However] there was one year where it almost failed to reproduce what we were able to do under Tom Adams [and] by 1994 the Democratic Labour Party had only increased the size of the Barbados economy by some $300 million,” the economist explained.

Moving on to the Owen Arthur era of governance, Straughn said that from the year after the former BLP leader took office, the 1995 to 2007 period saw a successful reproduction of economic growth activity “every year without fail”.

He noted that Arthur’s time saw an added $15.5 billion in new economic activity, adding that the former Prime Minister had left the economy with an international credit rating of ‘AA’.

However, he pointed out that under the DLP, the country has suffered a series of downgrades and as of September 27 this year international rating agency Standard and Poor’s placed Barbados’ status of credit worthiness at ‘CCC’.

21 Responses to Worse shape ever

  1. Carson C Cadogan October 13, 2017 at 12:05 am

    “”So far, up to 2016, some $5.5 billion has been eroded from the economic base of Barbados,” he added.””

    That’s your personal opinion.

    • harry turnover October 13, 2017 at 6:42 am

      How much is it C C C ? heard one a wunna paling cocks said it was $5 billion and you took time out to dispute $.5 of a billion ?
      Furthermore a paling cock has a higher status than a yard fowl….he on a paling ….you in de yard, so people would mo believe he than you…cluck cluck cluck.

    • hcalndre October 13, 2017 at 9:41 am

      @Carson C Cadogan; what`s your opinion?

    • Gearbox1964 October 13, 2017 at 4:15 pm

      LMAO…Harry Turnover you funny as RH…cluck cluck cluck

  2. Spectre October 13, 2017 at 12:59 am

    @Editor the headline should read: “Worst State Ever” not ‘Worse State Ever”. Worse is the opposite of better and worst is the opposite of best. Probably just a typo…

    • Spectre October 13, 2017 at 1:00 am


  3. colleta October 13, 2017 at 3:37 am

    Yard fowls have a problem with the truth.

  4. Arthur Collymore
    Arthur Collymore October 13, 2017 at 7:17 am

    There’s not much that can be said in defence of this gov but there are some, call them yardfowls, pailingcocks, piekingducks, roosters, hens or any other common feathered birds that would jump to defend the indefensible.

  5. Ali Baba
    Ali Baba October 13, 2017 at 7:28 am

    u think 10 years of teethfin is 10 days…..dem mek de dough, but refuse ta pay de bills/debt…..

  6. Geraldine Walrond
    Geraldine Walrond October 13, 2017 at 7:53 am

    Really???? Yard fowls and Paling cocks? That is all the information you got from reading the story? If so, then it is really yard fowls and paling cocks

  7. Tony Webster October 13, 2017 at 7:54 am

    Thanks to @Harry Turnover: Yard Fowls are not particularly known for the size of their brains. Hence, it is not surprising that when they run ‘cross de road an’ get DEM foot brek by a passing vehicle…DEM doe turn -round…and try to get back across to a “safe” side of the road…never mind anuthuh ZR peltin’ down on DEN again.
    Boys will be boys; yard fowls will be yard fowls…and Carson….well…let’s say…he’s a phenomenon admixed with a syndrome and tightly wrapped up in a conundrum – yes, one of them coats with long white sleeves and strong ties at the cuffs…
    Still, you must mention his name when praying…and mine too! We are, if nothing else, our brothers’ keepers.

    BTW: Thanks be to God that we are seeing the emergence of intelligent, patriotic, straight-shooting, strong-spined folks like Ryan Straughn.

  8. Kevin October 13, 2017 at 8:51 am

    The BLP is running to win to improve and fix. Sounds like he making excuses already if they fall short.

  9. Greengiant October 13, 2017 at 9:13 am

    I won’t make time to listen to political a lecture like this one. He is speaking on behalf of the B L P for the purpose of the B L P. At the anniversary lecture of a former party leader.

    He did not mention the reduction of national dept by the Sandiford administration, or the increase of it under the Arthur administration. This is a critical miss, so i dismiss this lecture for lack of objectivity. He should save the contents of this document for the party’s conference later. Simple.

    • hcalndre October 13, 2017 at 9:39 am

      @ Greengiant; They should go to the DLP Lunch Time Lecture, eat some grain and hear the truth why they are not responsible for the 22 down grades.

  10. De Fish Man October 13, 2017 at 11:53 am

    Well said..!! Put the BLP back where they belong…!!!
    To run the country…!!!
    Not like the DLP who have sent Barbados back to the doldrums of stagnation & over taxation.
    Mia Motley & her Team will bring Barbados back to AA rating in at least the next 10,years.It will be difficult,but if not done now..!!!
    Barbados will end up the same as many Other third world,doomed with no return like counties where it is cheaper to use money as toilet paper than toilet paper…….!!!
    Call the elections now Fruendell….!!!
    What is he waiting on……!!!
    Vote the BLP in ASAP….,!!

  11. Tennyson Drakes October 13, 2017 at 12:10 pm

    “De Fish Man”: You might just get what you are asking for. The USA ask for Trump. They got him. What a thing.

    • Breadfruit. October 13, 2017 at 12:19 pm

      @ Tennyson

      The USA asked for trump?

      The majority of voters voted for Hilary. That idiot got in because of the system they have up there.

  12. Vad50 October 13, 2017 at 12:50 pm

    I wonder how many of you sprouting your BLP lingo forgot that it was the same BLP who tried to block the late Errol Barrow, then leader of the DLP Party from getting Independence for the country of Barbados who was under colonial rule. It was the same BLP Party who was in power for fifteen (15) years and let the country in a mess; when the government under Thompson came into power. And because of the economic crisis in America that threw the world finances into a downward spiral, and others are still climbing out of it. Are any of you paying close attention about what is going on in the international trade markets and the G8 countries that is causing havoc for smaller countries around the world including Barbados. Why don’t you put your energy into writing to the IMF and the United Nations and tell them hands off Barbados and allow the governments in the Caribbean to borrow money at fair interest rates, and stop their racist economic sanctions. That is who you should be yelling at. Join others who are fighting for the Caribbean region and other small countries to be treated fairly on the internationals markets.

  13. Milli Watt October 13, 2017 at 1:02 pm

    all the answers in opposition but the possibility of a win bringing more questions than answers. I am not surprised, you sound like a MP already.

  14. Greengiant October 13, 2017 at 1:43 pm

    @hcalndre: I won’t recommend that anyone eat a grain of anything from not even a vendor, shop, restaurant or political yard on George Street or Roebuck Street.

    This is not the time for yard fowls. paling cocks or setting hens. This is time for change, and not the small change available at these two locations.

    If you are one of the feathered stock in any yard, a mouth servant, or any other servant who believe in choosing the best of two evils. Well I have news for you. There’s no relationship between the word better, best and evil. So the two evils must go for us to ever achieve good. I’m at home working hard on the projects I have on the books so I won’t have time for George Street on Fridays. Why do you all believe that once someone don’t blow your sorry party’s out of tune trumpet, that person could only be playing in one other band? Half a century of power sharing between you two and your homes are in shambles. You can’t even maintain your own private properties and want to maintain a country. What really does you lot represent?

  15. Mark Adamson October 14, 2017 at 8:03 am

    Two things here:

    (1) Once more, Mr. Straughn’ has massively failed to produce any alternative policies and programs for the reactivation of growth and development/for the further growth and development of Barbados. None whatsoever!! None!!

    (2) The last BLP government grossly and recklessly mismanaged the political economy and services industry sectors of this country. Owen Arthur – just before becoming prime minister of the government of Barbados – stated how the Barbados political economy would become an export-led, private sector driven one. Lo and behold, by the end of the his first term in office, it was clear that the political economy had become an import-led, government driven one. Remember that during the Arthur prime ministerial years some Minister (not sure if it was the said Arthur) had suggested that they wanted to see one car per household in Barbados. Remember too that during this time the most wild and reckless expansion of the government sector took place in this


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