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Hon Fahie wants OECS countries less dependent on foreign investments

…presses for ‘integration agenda’ @ Anguilla confab
The Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1) was at the time addressing a panel discussion on ‘Transformation in the OECS’ venued at the Evelyn Matthias Ballroom, Royal Caribbean Resort in Anguilla. Photo: Provided
Opposition Leader, the Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1), has challenged his regional counterparts to embrace the existing resources within Caribbean blocs, such as the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, in order to transform the regional economies and scales of development, instead of looking just looking to foreign investors. Photo: Provided
Opposition Leader, the Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1), has challenged his regional counterparts to embrace the existing resources within Caribbean blocs, such as the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, in order to transform the regional economies and scales of development, instead of looking just looking to foreign investors. Photo: Provided
THE VALLEY, Anguilla, WI - Opposition Leader, the Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1), has challenged his regional counterparts to embrace the existing resources within Caribbean blocs, such as the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), in order to transform the regional economies and scales of development, instead of looking just looking to foreign investors.

Hon Fahie was at the time addressing a panel discussion on ‘Transformation in the OECS’ venued at the Evelyn Matthias Ballroom, Royal Caribbean Resort in Anguilla.

Speaking to those gathered in attendance, the Virgin Islands Opposition Leader, said, “the OECS countries must see themselves in partnership.”

He observed for panelists “right now there is a mindset that international investors make an economy, but that is wrong thinking…The people of the Caribbean are the investors in the economies.”

He said “they are the ones who engage in small business activities to keep it running…They are the ones who acquire education to keep the economy going…They are the ones with long term interest in the economy.”

Hon Fahie was adamant that too often “we as locals overlook the ability of our own people to build our economy.”

Competing Economies  

Leaders across the OECS have the opportunity to truly work together he said and argues that “instead of competing against each other, there are opportunities to promote the OECS economies as one product.”

Citing practical examples, Hon Fahie drew reference to the notion that the Virgin Islands (VI) is the hub for yachting and sailing.

He suggested that “instead of training for maritime in places like Miami and Texas, students of the region can come to the BVI and learn.”

According to the VI’s Opposition Leader, this would be an opportunity to expand the ambit of the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College (HLSCC) and that the VI has the “best training ground from sailing or captain licenses.”

He said, too, St. Kitts and Nevis is home to a Veterinary School, “that can be the hub where OECS students can go, if they love animals, rather than going internationally. 

OECS Economies

According to Hon Fahie, “Anguilla can be the hub for hospitality training on travel and leisure for those students who want to get degrees in tourism or even environmental management…In other words Ordinary people can build OECS economies through recognising the qualities that each bring.”

He told those in attendance “If we have a peopled-focus OECS economy, then investment would be easy as people would see their stake in building the economy—whether building their own economy or investing in other regions of the Caribbean.”

Hon Fahie observed that “we have products that we don’t even push to each other…People have to be a part of the Caribbean trade economy, but we have to make it affordable for each other and show how working together and not competing against each other is essential to developing strong economies.”

The VI Opposition Leader was joined by Honourable Victor F. Banks (Chief Minister of Anguilla); Retired Justice, Don Mitchell QC; Hon. Dean Jonas (Minister of Agriculture, Antigua); Mr. Fabian M. Fahie (Retired Economist, Anguilla) and Chairperson: Mr. Wycliffe C. Fahie.

 

23 Responses to “Hon Fahie wants OECS countries less dependent on foreign investments”

  • Jus saying (20/08/2018, 11:48) Like (33) Dislike (5) Reply
    while funny man spreading nasty stuff on Andrew is around the Caribbean as a statesman. Fahie can represent us any where funny man cannot
  • BVIAA (20/08/2018, 12:06) Like (44) Dislike (31) Reply
    This is the same enslavement mentality, even our leaders are blend to see. You can’t expect to burden the state without any forenign investment. The fact that you need expats to work for people and other locals can’t do these said jobs is just enough to show you need foreign investment. That’s just one area, don’t let me start on all the other reason we have no other options for investment.
    • To BVIAA (20/08/2018, 13:31) Like (7) Dislike (13) Reply
      Did you read the article? Fahie clearly is for foreign investment but spoke on how OECS members can play a better role in that area. SMDH.
  • pat (20/08/2018, 12:07) Like (15) Dislike (14) Reply
    good going Andrew
  • Good Timing (20/08/2018, 12:42) Like (16) Dislike (0) Reply
    Well said, Hon Fahie. There could even be more benefits for each participating Caribbean country in enhancing their local economies, while developing the region as a whole. It could be seen as economic working partnerships, while each would be able to continue pursuing their own national agendas in respect of political associations. If these ventures are undertaken with goodwill for each other - not just for one or two to try to take as much as possible without regard for the other participants, then real improvements would be evidenced in relations. There is much good to come out of well-thought out plans for Caribbean nationals working together in harmony. For many years, the BVI community has been into accommodating many nationalities, and at this particular time, it is even more appreciated that all can work together to get the jobs done. Development of the Caribbean countries and territories engaging the best practices for the region with the input of regional and technical knowledge is ripe for the picking.
    • Truthfully Speaking (20/08/2018, 13:48) Like (34) Dislike (14) Reply
      We could talk all the wonderful stuff of working together with our Caribbean counterparts but right here in the BVI this same representative is tearing each other apart with who indigenous from who's not nonsense. How are we to take you serious with what you're saying? Not buying It!
      • Good Timing (20/08/2018, 19:31) Like (6) Dislike (13) Reply
        I felt the need to quote your statement: ". . . but right here in the BVI this same representative is tearing each other apart with who indigenous from who's not nonsense." Therein lies your problem - it is not nonsense - it is "cultural appreciation". Each country and territory is to be allowed to develop its nationals in its own tradition and unique culture; those who choose to come and live here, should be willing to adopt the best of the culture of the host, while appreciating the diversity of their own knowledge; those who are local or whose ancestral lineage lays claims to being indigenous should be thankful that they have a native base on which to rely. If these detest that they have local roots, they need to seek out how to improve their lot and to appreciate it. "How are we to take you serious with what you're saying? Not buying It!" Too bad if you don't want to take my message seriously, as I have been promoting this view for many years, and am more convinced than ever, that BVIslanders need to learn to appreciate each other's value in the community, and others who come to live among us also need to appreciate that there is great value and enrichment in cultural diversity. It is time to get past the messenger, listen to the message and take the appropriate right action. Regional integration with local identity - it is necessary for peaceful and prosperous survival.
      • To Truthfully Speaking (20/08/2018, 22:31) Like (2) Dislike (10) Reply
        Please blog factual stuff and not lies that the bald head in the government have you believing. Fahie has NEVER publicly partake of this topic that you refer.
  • confused (20/08/2018, 13:02) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    Explain more what you mean Mr Fahie
  • First district (20/08/2018, 13:34) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    We are proud of our man on a mission.
  • Clearly (20/08/2018, 13:36) Like (12) Dislike (1) Reply
    Clearly Fahie can rise to the next level beyond our shores when he has to. That's why I know that he will make an excellent Premier for the BVI.
  • People (20/08/2018, 13:37) Like (14) Dislike (5) Reply
    Hon. Fahie has matured in front of our very eyes as one of our GREAT LEADERS of modern day times.
  • What we know (20/08/2018, 13:41) Like (13) Dislike (2) Reply
    Despite what walywin and NDP want us to believe bad about Fahie, the majoroty knows that Fahie is a very well mannered, polite and intelligent man that can represent us on the local, regional and international levels. He's a true leader.
  • for me (20/08/2018, 13:44) Like (18) Dislike (21) Reply
    I am totally impressed with Fahie. He represented the BVI well in the UK with the Premier. The guy is the real deal for Premier.
  • for me (20/08/2018, 13:44) Like (9) Dislike (11) Reply
    I am totally impressed with Fahie. He represented the BVI well in the UK with the Premier. The guy is the real deal for Premier.
  • native (20/08/2018, 14:46) Like (20) Dislike (17) Reply
    The wrong attitude again; The Caribbean need foreign investors to create jobs and to help in the development of their country. Even the USA has foreign company and banks. Fahie! we need to change our direction and look beyond our neighbor-hood.
    Are you going to create jobs for every youth leaving school? the answer is no! we must have investors because to do not manufacture, export and we have no industrial company..
    Boss change your direction and mind set.
  • Caribbean (20/08/2018, 14:51) Like (9) Dislike (7) Reply
    Speak for the BVI because you have large industries and manufacturing company. The BVI export goods and services ent it?
    We need foreign investors in the rest of the OECS
  • um (20/08/2018, 18:48) Like (13) Dislike (3) Reply
    There is a truck load of money floating around the Caribbean - and no the BVI doesn’t need a load of outside investors. What it needs is to change its attitude from a what’s in it for me and how do I screw the other person to a work together mentality. The problem here is people get jealous and sabotage others hard work instead of trying to make their own pie or joining in with others. Maybe more professionalism is required and the realisation that hard work is what gets you to the money. Plus giving back to the community is a equally large part of a successful business - how many people do you see do that from BVI companies?
  • E. Leonard (20/08/2018, 19:32) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    The OECS, along with many other Caribbean Commonwealth countries, depends heavily on external investment/foreign direct investment. As such, to the maximum extent practical, maximum effort should be exerted to reduce it. Buying local has a multiplier effect on the local economy so too does regional investment have a multiplier effect on the regional economy. Currently, the plantation economy concept is embraced, ie, the economy is based primarily on exports and little on the residentiary sector. Structural changes and a shift away from the plantation economy are needed. The regional economy is varied, ie, industrial {Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Guyana(recent discovery of oil)}, agriculture and tourism.

    Thus, the region must work cooperatively and collaboratively to used it resources for the benefit of the region and its people. As noted earlier, regional countries/investors investing in the region creates a multiplier effect in the regional economy. For example, efforts should be expended to reduce the regional food import bill; this effort would also improve food security. In 2011, Caricom food import bill was aproximately $4B; less than 15% of food was sourced in the Caribbean. Nonetheless, increased regional investment would be a heavy lift that would require much functional cooperation.

    Moreover, the West Indies Federation (VI sat it out), a group of 10 regional countries, lasted from 1958-1962. Parochial and freedom of movement issues........etc among some member countries doomed the effort. Jamaica started independent march that was followed by Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados.............and ended with St. Kitts, Nevis and Anguilla; Anguilla eventually breakaway from St. Kitts and Nevis. IMO the region would be off politicallly, economically.......etc if the Federation had survived; individual regional countries got independence with a mix bag of results. Unification has served the US, Canada, UK, EU and Australia relatively well so why can’t it work for the Caribbean?
    • Socrates (21/08/2018, 15:48) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      Are you pushing a regional central government? What would be the benefits, if any, of some type of central government? Where will the capital or headquarters be? Will the big 2 be fighting over it again? Will the Lesser Antilles be swallowed in the Union? In the previous Federation, which country had disdain for freedom of movement? Has its attitude changed? Is its citizens now flooding the small islands? What currency will it used? How realistic is centralization? Is the friction among nations too strong for centralization? Will centralization be put to a referendum in each island? Will a committee for centralization be put together?
  • very foreign (20/08/2018, 21:13) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    don't put your lives and prosperity and happiness and futures in the hands of foreigners. they may interact with
    you, play a part, contribute, and you will see any of their good and bad. but DON'T allow them to run the show.
    Its your region and countries. Do good for yourselves. don't trust them, trust #1.
  • yes (21/08/2018, 00:14) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    We should work together more in the Caribbean and trade more among ourselves, but we still need foreign investment firstly because all developing and developed countries do, you just need to sensibly plan and manage it.

    Unfortunately though, our laws and policies are not set up to assist ANY non Belongers, Caribbean or otherwise. We also have a history of bashing Caribbean cousins so that dialogue would have to change a lot.

    Fundamentally though it’s just too hard to do business whether local or foreign in BVI. Infrastructure remains awful, telcos expensive, business licences and hiring takes way too long and too open to political and racially-motivated meddling
  • Charley Rose (21/08/2018, 08:33) Like (11) Dislike (2) Reply
    Well said Hon. Fahie. It is time the OECS and the wider Caribbean start to embrace each other. Any country that rely on foreign investments to sustain their economies will suffer terribly when those investments cease. For example the Commonwealth of Dominica was dependent heavily on Ross University presence in that country because they contributed significantly to the country's economy. Suddenly they moved to Barbados.

    The Region should invite companies from Trinidad and Tobago to establish companies that will provide employment for nationals in the respective countries and boost their economies. Trinidad is spreading its wings in many countries as far as from Jamaica to Guyana. For example Republic Bank, CARIB beers, Busta soda, cement and the list goes on are Trinidad based i

    Hon. Fahie is on the right track and I am waiting anxiously to welcome him as our next Premier. I want to urge the people of the B.V.I not to place their confidence on foreign investments because when they invite the China Buss on the Road to the territory, they will not wish to see the results of that initiative.

    China has seven trillion dollars to invest, however, when they invest they will ensure they will have room for their people to come and reside here and own businesses.


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