Bahamian businesses are going to be challenged to reinvent themselves as they get into the throes of more global competition, Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers’ Confederation (BCCEC) Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Beckles charged yesterday.
He was responding to the announcement made earlier this week by Cavalier Construction Company Limited that, due to significantly reduced turnover/workload for the company, it would be closing its doors.
“It is indeed a concern, Cavalier has been one of the longstanding major general contractors for a while in this country. We grew up hearing the name. There are a couple of things that come out of this and it is tragic that a company of this standing in the country is shutting its doors,” Beckles said while appearing as a guest on the Guardian Radio talk show “Paradigm Shift”.
“Bahamian businesses are going to be challenged to reinvent themselves as we get into the throes of more global competition. That’s a reality and whether you’re a small business provider or a medium or large business, the idea that we must constantly evolve has to be a part of our everyday business thinking. Learn as much as you can, not just about the domestic component of your business or the regional component, but we must also take the time to understand how the global climate is changing and who are our competitors.”
Despite the shift toward global consumerism in local markets, Beckles said it’s still imperative measures are in place to protect Bahamians operating in this new environment.
“We are in a globally competitive environment and that means our vulnerabilities as companies that are in The Bahamas have increased exponentially, but by the same token, though, we are also challenged to examine our rules on how we permit foreign entities to be able to operate in this country, not necessarily to the detriment of our local entities,” he said.
“When legislation is being recommended in The Bahamas, we must pay attention to legislative changes and understand how those proposed changes are going to impact our businesses. And when those town meetings and the opportunities to contribute to those proposed pieces of legislation are open to us, we have to speak up. We have to read it, understand, and if we can’t understand it, get somebody to interpret it for us, but those legislative changes impact how we do business.
“So, it’s important that as a part of our general governance, people understand that we have a role to play. That is why it’s important to join the chamber of commerce, because we can advocate on your behalf as well.”