Politicians who get in the way of progress should be made to pay the price at the polling booth, suggests one of the country’s most garrulous political leaders.
Similarly, anyone in the public service or the business community who are “blockers to progress” should be sidelined, Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development Donville Inniss has said.
“[Barbados must cut out the] red tape, paper shuffling [and] indecisiveness, and penalize the blockers to progress or get them out of the system, politicians included, any present or future,” Inniss said today in an address at the Spark Global Business Caribbean seminar at the Radisson Aquatica Resort, Aquatic Gap, St Michael.
The minister repeated his regular complaint about obstacles in the way of doing business, and today he presented his own administration with some recommendations to improve the situation.
“Stop striving to be the most over regulated society. Rules are necessary but we must ease up on some of the regulations, especially those enshrined in law for an era long gone,” Inniss said.
The Member of Parliament for St James South also made a plea on behalf of struggling businesses, calling for support for those establishments.
And without pointing fingers at anyone in particular, he said: “Our culture of kicking businesses when they are down must end without delay. There will always be some rogues and vagabonds but most entrepreneurs do want to pay their bills and grow their businesses. Likewise, we also have to help folks to know when it is time to quit trying and get real about business prospects.”
However, Inniss expressed a degree of frustration with members of the private sector who do little to encourage entrepreneurship.
The minister suggested that instead of simply being copycats, Barbadian businesses should attempt to be more creative.
“Let us embrace our creative minds, whether in technology, art, drama, music, politics and science. Shift focus from using others’ apps, programmes or systems, and focus a bit more on developing our own and sell to the world. Do not just use other people’s renewable energy designs, but design our own.
“We must foster a culture that embraces those who think and act outside of the norm, those who look inside at our weaknesses and take the time and risks to find solutions. We need a culture and a cadre of workers who are prepared to make a positive difference and be transformational and not just transactional,” Inniss said.