Barbadians are being urged by this island???s Finance Minister, Christopher Sinckler, to increase their level of productivity.

While addressing The Productivity Council???s one-day summit recently at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, Mr. Sinckler said it was necessary for Barbadians to work harder and smarter.

He told his audience: ???We have to use the modern technologies and the modern tools to produce more with less. That is what productivity is about. We have to improve our service quality in tourism, in international business, wherever we provide services, we have to lift the game because what we were doing in the past is just not going to get us where we want to go in the future.

???We have to be fiscally prudent, we have to bear some pain???but we must hold the hands of those most affected by the adjustment. But most of all, we have to have confidence in ourselves. If we don???t do what we know that we need to do to correct the situation, somebody else will do it for us. But they will not have as much heart and empathy???for the less fortunate.???

The Minister stressed that this was not the time to pronounce the demise of any sector in the country, but said it was necessary to re-energise Barbados??? economy. ???It requires strategising, investment, energising domestic activity and the implementation of calculated initiatives to wrestle Barbados from its challenging predicaments,??? he suggested.

He pointed out that it was important to build a symbiotic relationship between the public and private sectors and labour, so as to ensure that the foreign exchange earning sectors perform at their peak.

He continued: ???That we can earn the foreign exchange that we require, do the transactions we have to do on a daily basis and have a little extra to build our reserves; that is what will make Barbados better in the future, that is what has made Barbados what it is???

???Now is the time to lay down arms, pick up ploughs and to till the soil of this Barbados economy in a way that helps us to achieve those things which we know we have to achieve to sustain the quality of life and standard of living that all of us have and that we want our children to have. That is how we will get out of the recession,??? Mr. Sinckler stated.

The Minister called on the tourism sector to work with Government to turn around the situation in the industry. He reminded his audience that Government had worked assiduously over the past few months to ensure the Sandals international brand was brought here and promised that greater effort would be made to attract other brands to Barbados.

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