There are indeed few words that can describe the personal loss I feel, and the collective loss that Barbados and this region will experience, at the passing of Ben Arrindell today.
When it came to matters involving international tax regimes, few could match what Ben brought to the table. For nearly three decades he had been a faithful and competent advisor to the country in a variety of roles yet, among those who hear his name today, few could describe it as familiar.
That’s because Ben was as unassuming as he was knowledgeable and competent. He never sought the limelight yet was never stingy in the sharing of his experience as a guide to the Government and people of Barbados. Indeed, the tremendous success we have been able to boast about as an international business domicile of the highest repute was not without the considerable input and guidance of Ben Arrindell.
Ben and I go way back to my time in Government under then Prime Minister Owen Arthur right up to the current time when he was appointed as my Special Advisor on International Business. No one understood international tax matters like Ben and his loss will leave a huge void.
Never once have I found reason to question the logic or value of his thought, for when he sat at the table, he did so with credentials that recommended his presence — a lifetime of service in the accounting and financial services sector, including International Tax and Managing Partner of Ernst & Young, Director of Invest Barbados, Chairman of Barbados Private Sector Association, as well as a member of the United Nations Committee of Experts on International Cooperation in Tax Matters.
When the Government of Barbados presented him with the Silver Crown of Merit in 2012 and the Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2020, they were but a token of appreciation for a lifetime of service to his country. Even today, at his passing, there is still a huge debt that the country owes him.
On behalf of the Government and people of Barbados I extend sincere condolences to his family. We will not forget him. May his soul rest in peace.