Prime Minister Freundel Stuart has urged commercial banks to invest in this island???s hotel sector.
Mr. Stuart told the media, following a tour of Ocean Two Resort & Residences today that financial institutions should be willing to take investment in that sector seriously.
???It can???t continue to make a lot of sense for banks to lend people money to buy motor cars, a more serious investment than investment in a sector that leads the Barbadian economy and that earns us most of the foreign exchange we need to sustain our standard of living and quality of life.
???There has to be a change in the thinking of our banking institutions. Conspicuous consumption is not the creed for this time. What we want is serious investment in things that have a long-term significance for the economy of Barbados. And, therefore, we are going to have some conversations with our financial institutions so that they take a more long-term view of their presence here in Barbados. Barbados has been good to them and we want to see them digging in more seriously here in terms of being willing to invest in this lead sector,??? the Prime Minister stated.
He proffered the view that the tourism industry had to be brought back on track if there was to be an improvement in this island???s economy. ???It [the tourism industry] has faced some serious challenges as a result of the global economic downturn and we are only going to have a competitive edge in this sector if we have some unique products and a unique experience to share with those who come to our shores,??? he remarked.
Mr. Stuart commended the management and staff of Ocean Two, saying he was ???quite impressed??? with what the hotel had to offer. He described the hotel as an example of serious investment in the infrastructure here.
???I am bowled over by the warmth of the hospitality I have experienced here this morning and the quality of service I see on display,??? he said.
Ocean Two is working towards becoming the leading 4 Diamond Residential Resort in the Caribbean.