Barbados must do better at facilitating business and Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development, Donville Inniss is calling for a change in culture and attitude in order to make this process a reality.
Speaking during a media briefing this morning at the inaugural meeting of the National Task Force on Business and Trade Facilitation at his Reef Road, St. Michael office, Mr. Inniss stressed that the private sector could also aid in this development by being more engaged in economic development in Barbados.
???I certainly hold the view that the State is quite large and sometimes very intrusive and convoluted, to some extent, and that there is much more in our economy that the private sector must be doing and can be doing [but] we have to create the enabling environment to make it function,??? he said.
Against this backdrop, the Minister noted that Government made the decision back in August 2013, when the Minister of Finance announced in the Financial Statement and Budgetary Proposal that the State would establish a business facilitation unit located in his Ministry, to assist in the better facilitation of business with the State.
Pointing out that Government???s aim is to find solutions to the myriad complaints about the challenges of doing business with Government, both at the individual and corporate level, Mr. Inniss expressed the view that ???this cannot continue and we must find solutions to these challenges that confront ordinary individuals and companies which seek to engage with Government on a daily basis.???
Citing such reasons as ambiguity with respect to State policies and programmes, inherent deficiencies in the system that may have led to tardiness, and perceived lack of professional conduct from the Public Sector, the Minister emphasised that at the end of the day, what they are aiming for is a situation where those who have to interact with the State can do so in an atmosphere that is free of ambiguity, consistency in policies and where your business is made to feel welcomed.???
??????All of the blame of course cannot be placed at the feet of the public sector because on the private sector end you have those who have little regard for policies and procedures, little regard for the need for transparency and those who have little regard for public officers and who feel whatever they want, they must get and get now,??? opined the Minister.
He asserted that the Task Force was not created to ???bash any side??? but rather presented an opportunity ???to put our heads together and find ways in which we can improve upon the situation.???