Chamber hopeful govt commitments will alleviate enduring challenges

Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation (BCCEC) Chairperson Khrystle Rutherford-Ferguson said yesterday the business community is hopeful that the new Davis administration’s initiatives outlined in last week’s Speech from the Throne will alleviate the pain points and challenges that it has been enduring.

In particular, the BCCEC chair said the community is keen to learn more about the government’s promise to introduce measures that will bring immediate relief to businesses, as well as the promise to utilize public-private partnerships to build new government infrastructure, including promised hospitals in the two main cities and the Family Islands, which she said could lead to the hiring of local construction companies and workers.

“In my opinion, the Speech from the Throne proposes initiatives which could have a positive impact on the business community. Over the course of the next few weeks, the BCCEC will seek further details on the proposed initiatives by engaging with the government. This will give the private sector greater insight into the policies that will be used to implement the initiatives proposed in the Blueprint for Change,” she said in a written correspondence.

Rutherford-Ferguson continued, “The BCCEC further acknowledges and welcomes the government’s commitment to consult and be inclusive in its decision-making and notes that there are matters of great importance outlined in the Blueprint for Change that will require consultation with the private sector to ensure successful implementation. Execution of these initiatives is key to accelerating economic recovery and growth.

“It is hoped that the initiatives committed to by the government will aid in reducing the pain points and challenges that have been endured by the business community, such as the ease of doing business, the cost of doing business and the need for tax reform.”

Other points of interest for the business community include the government’s announcement that it will introduce legislation to create tax incentives for small and medium-sized enterprises. Rutherford-Ferguson said such an initiative could lead to an increase in new entrepreneurs, or the growth of existing businesses.

She also pointed to the government’s commitment to expand the digital footprint of government services, thereby improving the ease of doing business in The Bahamas, as well as its plan to encourage the adoption of renewable energy.

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Paige McCartney

Paige joined The Nassau Guardian in 2010 as a television news reporter and anchor. She has covered countless political and social events that have impacted the lives of Bahamians and changed the trajectory of The Bahamas. Paige started working as a business reporter in August 2016. Education: Palm Beach Atlantic University in 2006 with a BA in Radio and Television News

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