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Bahamas to cut red tape for investors

Speaking at the Caribbean Hotel Investment Conference and Operations Summit held last week in Nassau, Minister of State for Investments Khaalis Rolle said that he has initiated a plan to streamline and institutionalize the application process for investors. 

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TheBahamasInvestor.com
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Sandy Sands

Pictured: Robert “Sandy” Sands of Baha Mar during a panel session at the Caribbean Hotel Investment Conference and Operations Summit November 9. (BIS Photo/Gena Gibbs)

Minister of State for Investments Khaalis Rolle joined a panel of hospitality leaders November 9, to address prospective investors about current trends in The Bahamas to create jobs and expand the industry.

The Caribbean Hotel Investment Conference and Operations Summit was held November 8- 9 at Atlantis Paradise Island, where hotel executives gathered to learn about careers in the hospitality and service-orientation industry.

“I looked at other jurisdictions and what they are doing, in investment promotion and the structure of investment promotion activities,” said Minister Rolle. “I started to develop this plan [where] at a keystroke, I know every single investor in The Bahamas; I know how long they have been here; I know what they have invested in; I know their background; I know what their capability is; I know what particular issues they need help with.”


Minister Rolle said he wants investors to be able to pick up the phone or go online, download and submit an application and within 24 to 48 hours, get a response.

“We want to modernize the entire approach to investing in The Bahamas and modernize the entire approach to doing business in The Bahamas,” he told the audience.

Minister Rolle said that changing the industry from relying on personalities and government to policy driven work ethics will take time. He said investors should not have to differentiate between an outgoing government and an incoming government, because the process should be institutionalized.

Minister Rolle said the major challenge of governance is ensuring balanced development and employment opportunities for local workers.

Rolle and Sands

Pictured: Investment State Minister Khaalis Rolle (left) and Robert “Sandy” Sands from Baha Mar during a panel discussion at the Caribbean Hotel Investment Conference and Operations Summit November 9. (BIS Photo/Gena Gibbs)

“As Sandy [Robert Sands of Baha Mar] pointed out, we understand there is a skills gap; we understand that more has to be done. But it’s not a single sector’s problem,” he said.

The Minister noted that the Prime Minister recently announced there will be a national training initiative launching soon and the person to head that training initiative has already been selected.

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Philip Galanis, managing partner at HLB Galanis & Co, said last week during Accountant's Week in Nassau that tax reform of some kind is inevitable in light of government efforts to gain WTO accession.

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