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BIBA looks forward to survey

Natasha Beckles

BIBA looks forward to survey

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The Barbados International Business Association (BIBA) is looking forward to the completion of a much anticipated mechanism to manage the contribution of the offshore sector to the country’s economy.
Executive director Henderson Holmes said the European Union-funded project was “well advanced” and when completed, would provide a way to measure the sector’s contribution on an ongoing basis.
“It is still a challenge to get recognition. There is a saying that what gets measured, gets noticed – and unfortunately there has been no proper measurement of the contribution of the international business sector,” he said.
Holmes was speaking last Tuesday during a Press conference to launch International Business Week, slated for October 23 to 29.
He noted that Invest Barbados had invested in the project since it was vital to their work.
“They are in a precarious position because they cannot measure in a pretty precise way, in a way that is reportable, how international business is progressing and what it is contributing.
“Their operation, what they do and their performance will always be questionable because they are talking about it but there is no measurement,” he said.
Holmes said a consultant was working with the Inland Revenue Department “to extract information from tax returns that show the value added in various areas of the economy”, like telecommunications and wages and salaries.
“There will be some gap survey that will have to be done because all of the information is not going to come from there.
“For example, international business contributes significantly to the tourism sector. I know one firm has indicated that in one year they booked as many as 180 hotel-room nights,” he said.