A leading financial institution has received praise for taking a ???bold initiative??? to launch a programme during challenging and stringent times, which would assist small and medium-sized businesses.

Finance Minister, Christopher Sinckler, made this observation this morning while delivering brief remarks at the launch of Scotiabank???s Economic Growth Fund at Courtyard by Marriott, Worthing, Christ Church.

He told those gathered that Scotiabank should receive kudos, not only from Barbadians but from the rest of Caribbean, because ???it is not easy generally when the economics are favourable and when the environment is conducive far less when times are challenging???.

He stated: ???Somebody said that a recession or a downturn or constraint circumstances is a good thing to utilise and a bad thing to waste, as it can be used to create opportunities where seemingly none exist. And, this is a real opportunity for Barbados and Barbadian small investors???

“…and they are investors because many of these people in small and medium-sized businesses take up their own capital, borrow funds from friends and family and others to invest in ideas and concepts and products to assist not just in their own personal and financial advancement and development but that of their country as well.???

Mr. Sinckler acknowledged that access to financing was never easy, especially at reasonable costs, as people were more cautious about how they utilised their resources to invest in stuff either as producers or as lenders.

He further stressed that it was imperative that we try to create ???at least those windows of opportunity, those instruments that would allow for those persons who have good ideas, those persons who have good product, to be able to invest and see a return on their investments???.

The Minister maintained that the initiative spoke to the confidence which the institution has in the economy of Barbados.?????This speaks to the fact that we do have capacity here that in many ways because of financing and other stuff is under-utilised and it needs to be fully-exploited for its entire value???

“This also speaks to the fact that because the trends are going in the direction that we want them to go that people are beginning to breathe a little easier, have a lot more confidence and are willing to work towards positive outcomes for the Barbados economy.

???Entrepreneurship going forward by small and medium-sized business people are the ones that will drive the belly of the Barbados economy that will create jobs, that will bring new products and services to the market, that will improve the quality of life and standard of living of all Barbadians,??? he reasoned.


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