The government expects the listing of Bahamas government registered stock on the Bahamas International Securities Exchange (BISX) to provide new financing options for Bahamian entrepreneurs, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest told Guardian Business yesterday, adding that additional financial markets modernization initiatives are expected to become available this fall and in 2020.
Turnquest said it is also hoped that the listing will lead to more private sector participation in the stock and better prices and yields on it.
“This step is another historic accomplishment of this Minnis-led administration as we lead the country into a more modern and 21st century mode of operation, taking advantage of advances in technology and fintech (financial technology) solutions available in developed countries around the world,” Turnquest said.
“The benefits to BISX will also redound to the strengthening of the capital markets, providing opportunities for additional
financing options to Bahamian entrepreneurs.”
He also highlights The Central Bank of The Bahamas’ Sand Dollar project – a digital version of the Bahamian dollar – which is expected to be piloted on Exuma soon.
“The Ministry of Finance continues to push for agency banking and electronic payment solutions in the Family Islands – particularly where no physical banks exist – advocacy for more cashless payment solutions in the public and private sectors, and our efforts to impress upon financial institutions the need to reduce the cost of such solutions,” said Turnquest.
He added that the government also continues to work with the central bank and the Clearing Banks Association to remove restrictions preventing Bahamians from accessing the formal banking system, which he said has “been an impediment to many Bahamians and residents”.