The global business sector has continued to put in a strong performance coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In fact, President of the Barbados International Business Association (BIBA) Jamar Arthur-Selman said the sector continued to be a key pillar to the performance of the local economy, contributing over 70 per cent of the tax revenues collected by the Government.
Stating that the sector was resilient enough to withstand the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic which brought the travel and tourism industry to its knees in 2020, he said it was also able to withstand the instability in the financial sector and other shocks in recent years.
“I can assure you that the sector is moving from strength to strength. We have not seen any slowdown in formation of entities, there has been no decline in jobs in the sector, and there has been no decline in funds collected by the regulatory agencies for fees and licences,” Arthur-Selman reported.
“Currently, we are informed that the contribution of the entities operating in the global business sector amount to as much as 73 per cent of the total corporate tax revenues received by the Barbados Revenue Authority.”
Indicating that players in the global business sector also contributed to several sectors, he said based on 2013 reported figures by Invest Barbados, the global business sector contributes about $800 million to the economy annually through real estate rental, tourism and travel, salaries and fees, among other areas
Arthur-Selman underscored the sector’s importance and contribution to the Barbados economy on Tuesday, while addressing the official launch ceremony of Global Business Week 2023, which will take place this year from October 22 to 28 under the theme Adapt, Evolve, Execute: Be the Change.
Following its opening reception, BIBA will host its secondary school symposium and public discussion forum on October 24. The careers showcase and workshop will take place on October 25 at the University of the West Indies, Cave HIll Campus.
This will be followed by the Global Business conference on October 26 and 27 at the Hilton Barbados Resort, which will examine a variety of topics including cross border transaction negotiations, the global minimum corporate tax, global business opportunities in agriculture and digital currency.
Indicating that international developments within the global business sector such as the pending 15 per cent global minimum tax rate remained “an ever present issue” for officials, Arthur-Selman said he was satisfied that the sector continued to withstand shocks “because we have learned to adapt”.
“Our global business sector is much stronger and more resilient than ever. By consistently being under the pressure of regulators to meet the rigorous international standards and to institute certain processes, we are better placed to withstand the scrutiny and respond to the changes,” he said.
Arthur-Selman said BIBA was working with local authorities to put systems in place to ensure more accurate, timely and regular reporting on the contribution of the sector.
Acting Director of Investment Facilitation with Invest Barbados Ann Mellows gave the assurance that agency will continue to do what is necessary to protect Barbados’ reputation as a jurisdiction of choice for international business.