MESSAGE FROM MINISTER THE HON. DONVILLE INNISSMINISTER OF INDUSTRY, INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS, COMMERCE AND SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENTThe last year has been another notable one for the international business sector here in Barbados and across the world. It certainly has been an exciting first year as Minister of International Business as I proverbially return home to the sector in which I have worked for numerous years. I am therefore pleased to make my first contribution to the sector's flagship magazine.This is the sixth edition of Barbados International Finance & Business. The magazine is produced annually by Invest Barbados in order to provide you, our existing and potential investors, as well as tax and legal advisors, an update on what has changed recently and the continued value of using Barbados in your operations. It is therefore a useful and informative tool for you.The international business sector is the largest contributor to corporate taxes in Barbados and is of major importance to our economy. The most recent measurement of its contribution showed that earnings reached BDS$874 million. On top of this, spillover effects from the sector include spend in the wider economy through hotel stays, food and restaurant visits, and importantly, indirect employment. Approximately 4,500 direct, full time jobs can be attributed to the sector. During 2013, four hundred and seventy-four international business entities were licensed. This represents a 9.4% increase over the previous year's performance. The impact is extensive. International business is a driving force in the Barbadian economy.The past year has been marked by continued threats to this important sector of Barbados' economy. Even though some parts of the world economy have begun to rebound, the outlook remains cautious, as does the approach of decision makers in business. This has been a challenge to sectoral growth but Barbados continues to make strides forward. The move to automatic and multilateral exchange of information is the latest in international changes to regulatory requirements for international financial centres. Being a transparent jurisdiction that attracts businesses of substance however, Barbados is up to the task.This leads me to mention a few of the initiatives being undertaken by the government to maintain and further improve the quality of the Barbados value proposition. Strengthening our regulatory framework is always important. Right-sized, we continue to comply with international standards and best practice, including the expansion of our treaty network.Constantly introducing products in demand is another important part of maintaining our attractiveness. Several vehicles are on course for development and are creating a buzz among our local and international partners. For example, legislation to facilitate the establishment of limited liability partnerships, real estate investment trusts, investment funds and incorporated cell companies are all in various stages of development and will add to the numerous ways in which investors can use Barbados to do business. Expanded opportunities for high net worth individuals interested in residing here are also on the cards.Bringing these new products to the market is just one example of the Government's commitment to international business. In addition, increased resources are being made available to the sector to make sure that Barbados can continue to attract and facilitate investors. Determined efforts are also being made to ensure that international best practices in regulation are enshrined in law, safeguarding the quality of our product. We are continuing our modernisation of government agencies that are integral to the sector to ensure the best possible service is being offered. Our goal is to make Barbados the leading International Financial Centre in the Western Hemisphere.Barbados offers an exceptional range of investment vehicles. It is still an excellent place to do business. I invite you to explore the information in this publication on the opportunities Barbados provides, and also to try them!The Hon. Donville Inniss Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development2014 BARBADOS INTERNATIONAL FINANCE & BUSINESS 5
< Page 4 | Page 6 >