By anguillian January 22, 2018 14:45





For yet another year, the Anguilla Government and the Anguilla Chamber of Commerce and Industry have had a sit down meeting to take a long and hard look at various matters concerning the island’s economic development.
Spokesman for the Chamber, Mr. Carlton Pickering, who chaired the business forum, as the meeting was called, said it was an opportunity for his organisation to meet with the Ministers of Government on issues facing the business community. “We are happy that the Ministers of Government have availed themselves to come to us, annually, so that we can share with them some of our concerns on matters of grave importance to the business community.”
The Chamber’s Vice President, Mr. Desron Bynoe, said in part: “As we gather here, following the impacts of an unprecedented hurricane, I would like us to ponder on the following: We cannot be [successful] except we have the spark within us. Just one spark we are talking about; the spark in change we all want to see; the spark to get things done for a better Anguilla; the spark of ensuring a system to facilitate the ease of doing business and attracting foreign investments; and the spark to make 2018 the launch pad for success and growth within our respective businesses and sectors.”
He continued: “2018 will require a lot of sparks and in this room alone there is an overflow of intellect to overcome our various challenges – present and future. I am therefore convinced that each of us have our own sparks, so let us use today’s discussion to build bridges, letting our voices be heard – and allowing those sparks to start healthy, constructive and positive attitudes and fires burning to lighten our way forward just not for today, but for years to come.”

Chief Minister, Mr. Victor Banks, said: “Over my period as Minister of Finance, Trade and Commerce, for many years, I have tried to find ways and means to ensure that the Chamber is a solid organisation so that it could assist us in channelling communication from the private sector to Government. I think that we have been able to give some support to the Chamber via the registration of companies and ensuring that funds are available. I think that has rebounded well to the private sector.”
Mr. Banks described 2017 as having been a very challenging year, one reason being the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma. “We are looking forward to 2018 as a recovery year, given the fact that we spent the latter part of 2017 to ensure that we meet the challenges of recovery,” he stated. “I think we are on a good track. The Government of Anguilla, the private sector and the community have come together to contribute to that recovery – and we have a lot to be thankful for.”

The Chief Minister continued: “The challenges of 2018 include the fact the tourism plant, the most important sector of our economy, has been impacted. As a consequence, more than fifty percent of our tourism plant will be down for the first quarter of 2018. But in terms of revenue, job and business opportunities, the construction sector will be a critical sector as we rebuild Anguilla. There will be opportunities for businesses, jobs, and for us to work together to see if we can continue the recovery process to build Anguilla better and stronger.”
Mr. Banks was accompanied at the business forum by his three other Ministers, Mr. Evan McNiel Rogers, Minister of Social Development; Mrs. Cora Richardson-Hodge, Minister of Home Affairs; and Mr. Curtis Richardson, Minister of Infrastructure; as well as Mr. Cardigan Connor, Parliamentary Secretary, Tourism, Sports, Youth and Culture.

Some of the main matters discussed at the business forum form the basis of a number of news stories elsewhere in this edition of The Anguillian.

By anguillian January 22, 2018 14:45


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