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No shouting match between Barbados and St Lucia, says Barbados minister

CMC/Theresa Blackman

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Barbados Minister of Commerce Donville Inniss. Photo credit: nationnews.com.

Do not expect any shouting matches between Barbados and Saint Lucia over the recent imposition of tax on some Barbadian goods by that country.

This was made clear by Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and small Business Development Donville Inniss, who said that although it was not an agenda item per se at the Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) ministerial meeting, which he recently attended, useful discussions with his counterpart in Saint Lucia and with officials from Grenada, St Vincent and other OECS countries were held.

“As I said previously, we are not about shouting at one another across the waters, but rather to sit down and engage constructively in dialogue on these issues. We would have been able to put Barbados’ case forward in terms of the impact on our local industries, ever mindful of the challenges that our brothers and sisters face in their own economies as well,” he added.

Explaining that there is an understanding that the OECS countries were aware of the sensitivities of these matters and the likely economic impact, Inniss noted that they will continue over the next couple of weeks, to engage in dialogue on these particular issues.

“We have some work to do from our end in Barbados too as we look at the existing Treaty of Chaguaramas. We have to ask ourselves if given our current challenges in the economy, if we don’t need to exercise some of the rights extended to challenged economies in CARICOM to request a delay in implementing some of the programmes, or in allowing Barbados to get some of the benefits that were previously extended to Lesser Developed Countries (LDCs), generally speaking”, he suggested.

In addition, the minister outlined that the whole LDC, More Developed Country (MDC) matter was one that was agreed should be featured on the agenda for the next COTED meeting since “good preparatory work [is require] if we are to engage in any constructive dialogue on that broader issue”.

The industry minister reminded Barbadians that it was not entirely a case of what rate of duties were applicable to some local items, but it must also be seen in the context that Barbados has great trade surplus in many of the OECS countries that cannot be jeopardised either.

“My own position is that we have to look at it through the eyes of the business community as well and maybe there is more that we can do as entrepreneurs to re- develop partnerships and to engage in enterprise with our sister islands in the region; not just to sit in Barbados and say, ‘we want to get into your market by manufacturing here and selling there, but [instead] how can we form strategic alliances that may benefit from economies of scale, [and] greater market access,” he asserted.

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6 comments

  1. St. Lucia and the OECS a bunch of bankrupt flyspeck islands feed Barbados? You smoking too much of that illicit Vincy weed that is smuggled into Bim. Not sure what Barbados imports from St, Lucia besides mangoes, bananas and Heineken( falsely labeled as a product of Saint Lucia)

    A quick halt to the few items Bim imports will hurt your pockets. If Bajans stop vacationing in St. Lucia we hear your tourism in trouble. If LIAT which is owned by Barbados stops flights to St. Lucia your economy of scale(ha ha ha) is in big trouble. Don't start no shit you cant finish idiot sob of Helen. The Bim minister is right sit down have a discourse work through thorny issues. Tit for tat and you lose.

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    • @SMH, we manufacture Heineken...stupido!

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    • You can't be a representation of the Barbadian education system. For sure if you had one spec of intelligence then you would know and have an understanding how trade and systems of trade operates.

      And I recalled that you have inadvertently, used part of my comment to lash out in your rant.

      Ask anyone in SLU, what products do they know that Barbados exports to SLU and no one knows. I am not even aware of any.

      On the issue of drugs, quite a number of your nationals have been in custody for said crimes in SLU. Poor people will find a way to survive at any cost.

      On you vacationing in SLU, I don't believe you have the available disposal income to do that.
      St. Lucia isn't cheap. And for you to lease a room in any of luxurious hotels here, you must be able to have the buying power and I don't see this happening, except your white daddies who may use your black females as a comfort girl in their two nights of jungle fever.

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    • What exactly does Barbados export to Saint Lucia?
      I don't really know of any and the atrocious butchered Barbadian accent that everyone hates.

      Barbadians vacationing in SLU, hahahaha (thanks for the laugh.)

      SLU is not cheap and based upon how sluggish your economy is coupled with high debt and retrenchment, you must be licking some heavy ass to post this crap/. 🙂

      The rest of your comment is just guttered ass backwards crap 🙂

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      • A minus B you fooling yourself ask the people who run your hotels where their guests come from in the Caribbean. With a per capita income three times Saint Lucia's and the Number One Developing nation in the world Bajans have enviable disposable income despite the economic crisis. If you don't know ask somebody and learn to read. Kofi Annan said Barbados punches above its weight. Who sent its Coast Guard with tons of water and supplies to help you during the Xmas flood. Look idiot Bim is for cooperation within CARICOM but it can stand on its own if necessary. One would have to ask St. Lucia's financier the outlaw state of Taiwan if St. Lucia could do the same.

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  2. So now you understand??? Saint Lucia is part of the OECS, and when you dis one (by saying we're 20 yrs behind), you dis all. You see, we have economies of scale and a huge market, our collective population is more than twice that of Barbados, not including all the tourists on land at any given time...hotels do buy your stupid beer.

    The OECS has supported your economy for decades, by attending UWI, visiting the US embassy for visas etc., so next time, think twice before you bite the hand that feeds you...you need us. The key words are partnership/strategic alliance...and mutual respect.

    Long live the OECS/Little-Ones.

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