The private sector is not prepared to sit and twiddle thumbs while “Rome is burning”, according to the not-for-profit organization charged with advancing the interests of the business community.
And one of the many ways the business community can help “to bring us out of the debacle” is to be part of Government’s economic advisory team, said President of the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) Eddy Abed.
Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler announced at a news conference on Monday that a restructured National Economic Council was being established to provide advice on fiscal and economic matters.
Former Prime Minister Owen Arthur has since confirmed to Barbados TODAY he was approached by Sinckler to lead the team as Chief Economic Advisor.
While Abed steered clear of throwing names into the hat for consideration, he told Barbados TODAY both the private sector and the unions ought to be given seats at the table.
“There are many people who would love to be given the opportunity to serve in this country to help to bring us out of the debacle that we are in. Rome is burning. Rome has been burning for years now. There is no longer a little smoke coming from one of the back bedrooms. It is in the engine room. Everything we do tells us that we are going to continue to run a deficit, tells us that we are going to have to continue to print money to meet Government’s expenses and the situation is so critical that one would have thought that you would be calling on the best brains,” the BCCI chief said.
“I am not saying this because I believe that the people that the minister has called on are not adequate, I am just hoping that the minister calls on a cross section of individuals, not only Government and not only academia, but from private sector and from the unions as well. We all have a stake in this and I think buy-in will be much greater if these sectors are represented,” he explained.