Prime Minister Freundel Stuart (FP)
Although Barbados’ socio-economic and political attainments have been well documented, the struggles of some business entrepreneurs, who rose against the odds to establish fledgling enterprises, is still a "best kept secret".
Prime Minister Freundel Stuart made an appeal for greater publication of the narratives of entrepreneurial successes, while addressing Everson R. Elcock and Company Limited’s 50th Anniversary Celebrations cocktail reception last night.?? It was held at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre.
He noted: "…The story that has not been fully told is about these business entrepreneurs who rose from humble beginnings to become the captains of industry and commerce and who helped to create the wealth and employment that fuelled the development of Barbados.
"The few stories that have been told are about the members of the relatively small and privileged planter class that grew up in a culture of enterprise and, at crucial moments, were able to shift from agriculture to commerce or any other area of business."
The Prime Minister reiterated that on election to office in January 2008, government had promised to provide the framework to facilitate the emergence of an expanded entrepreneurial class.
Concerning the ongoing economic recession, Mr. Stuart said that government drew up a Medium-Term Development Strategy for the period 2010-2014, to guide the growth of a new economy that is based on the cultural industries, sports and Information Communication Technologies (ICTs).
"It will, therefore, need an army of new entrepreneurs. But what has been missing so far, is a chronicle of entrepreneurial successes among ordinary Barbadians, to inspire more skilled and qualified citizens, to make the leap from being employees to becoming employers, who can create wealth and employment for the next level of development in Barbados," he surmised.
The Prime Minister lauded Everson R Elcock for its sound business acumen and stated: "I salute you for your magnificent achievements over the past 50 years.?? To parody the statement made by the late President of the United States of America, John F Kennedy: Not only have you gone to the moon, but you have recorded how you got there," Mr. Stuart stressed.
During the ceremony, a number of workers received special awards for their dedication to the company; while retiring employees Melvin Toppin and Douglas Maynard, received long-service awards.