Opposition MP Dale Marshall has questioned why, after four years, an earlier version of the Corporate and Trust Service Providers Act is being repealed.
He raised this concern today in the House of Assembly while speaking on the Corporate and Trust Service Providers Bill, 2015.
“I wish to ask the Minister of International Business Donville Inniss if he would be so kind to offer this Chamber a clear explanation of why it is [that] in 2011, a Bill came to this House seeking to regulate service providers in the international financial services sector, but that piece of legislation was never proclaimed and just under four years later, the legislation is being repealed,” the St Joseph MP said.
“We on this side expressed significant disappointment in what was presented to the Chamber in 2011. We would have hoped that in the intervening years, including an intervening election and a change in minister, we would have seen something earthshattering coming so close on that last Bill. It seems to be the same old cold pone that has been served again.”
Marshall also accused Inniss of boasting about the number of companies currently operating in Barbados and the number of licences being issued for new companies, but failing to mention that another major offshore company was expected to exit this jurisdiction at the end of May.
“This Government should hang its head in shame instead of talking about the sector hiring many Barbadians. The minister should speak about the companies that fled the jurisdiction,” he charged.
Marshall further asked what mischief or litany of complaints had prompted the new legislation.
“There is a fundamental principle that is used when one is trying to regulate the private sector – it is called the light touch. We do not need the director of the international business policing the sector in the way in which this Bill is trying to do. Who is the minister trying to please?” he queried.
Marshall charged that the hoops the international business sector has to go through, as well as the level of compliance and the attendant costs, effectively meant that the cost of international business in Barbados would skyrocket.