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BDS | Jan 13, 2022

Barbados’ ruling BLP promising Bajans more local investments

/ Our Today

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Leader of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP), Prime Minister Mia Mottley on the campaign trail in the St Philip North constituency on Wednesday, January 12. (Photo: Facebook @SupportMiaMottley)

With Barbados general elections just over a week away, the ruling  Barbados Labour Party (BLP) is making grand promises about the provision of more local investments for Bajans.

The BLP, headed by Prime Minister Mia Mottley, has outlined a slew of investment options it would pursue if re-elected to form the next government. The BLP hosted last Sunday what it described as a ‘mega manifesto meeting’, where it promised that a Mia Mottley-led administration will expand investment opportunities available to all Barbadians, including the Wyndham Grand Hotel at Sam Lord’s Castle.

In its Election Manifesto, the BLP promised if elected it would “seek the broaden the ownership of capital and wealth in Barbados through new investment opportunities, better management of government properties and assets, thereby providing returns to all Barbadians.”

Speaking at the manifesto meeting Minister of Home Affairs Wilfred Abrahams pointed to the need to encourage average Barbadians to invest more in local projects and job-creating initiatives, rather than keep their savings in banking institutions.

He trumpeted that the BLP, “Will give the ordinary Bajan a chance to own something substantial, not to collect a pittance of interest from the bank. The banks do not give you interest now; you actually pay to keep your money on the bank…We want to make Barbadians owners of public assets.”

Divesting Wyndham Grand Hotel

Referring to its planned divestment of the Wyndham Grand Hotel, the Barbados Home Affairs Minister remarked, “one of the critical things we are going to do is we will divest ourselves of the ownership and the interest in Sam Lord’s Hotel and its surrounding lands. We plan to give that as an investment opportunity to ordinary Barbadians and to the credit union movement.”

According to Abrahams, “by doing this [investment opportunity], we will allow you to have a stake in perhaps one of the biggest tourism opportunities in the entire of Barbados. This is what your government will do for you. We do not want it all for ourselves.”

The BLP’s Christ Church East candidate added that the Barbadian Wealth Fund will also be completed soon, providing another option for locals looking to invest in unoccupied Crown lands and assets.

 “We will complete the development of the Barbadian Wealth Fund, and this fund will put used government lands and assets to work, using them as stakes for equity and more significant developments. The fund will be legally owned by anybody over the age of 18,” Abrahams said in conclusion.

The election manifesto outlined $1.4 billion in direct investments, employing some 5,000 construction workers for two years and generating 3,600 full time jobs.

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