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Newsletter Vol.12, No 8.

TBI monthly news in review - September 23, 2017

Bahamas retains Baa3 ratingAugust saw the much anticipated release of Moody’s Investor Services’ rating of The Bahamas economic prospects. The agency confirmed The Bahamas’ Baa3 credit rating and left unchanged most of the risk ceilings for The Bahamas’ long-term and short-term financial obligations.

In justifying its decision, Moody’s highlighted the positive prospects of the government’s fiscal consolidation programme for debt stabilization; consistency in The Bahamas’ credit profile with other Baa3 rated-peers; and the limited liquidity pressures, despite higher borrowing requirements.

However, Moody’s move to change the outlook from stable to negative reflects its assumptions about the potential downside risks to the implementation of the fiscal consolidation process posed by a less favourable growth outcome and any climate-related shocks.

In a response released August 25, the Ministry of Finance said:

“Moody’s decision, while not surprising, is an endorsement of the government’s plans to deliver on its fiscal consolidation initiatives and eliminate any perceived risks to investor confidence.”

“As emphasized in the 2017/18 Budget Communication, fiscal stability and economic growth are top priorities for the government, and Moody’s has been advised of the government’s willingness to pursue credit-positive fiscal initiatives and growth-promoting policies to extricate the Bahamian economy out of the low growth cycle.”

In other news, the government said it will inject almost $20 million into the capital development of the country’s constituencies over the next five years through its Constituency Capital Grant Programme.

The Constituency Capital Grant Bill, 2017 came into force July 1 and provides for the allocation of constituency capital grants of the amount of $100,000 per annum for each of the 39 constituencies throughout The Bahamas to facilitate development and for connected purposes.

That amounts to $3.9 million annually, and balloons to $19.5 million over a five-year period.

In tourism news, the Ministry of Tourism announced that it has engaged global communications firm Weber Shandwick to provide communications support in the key markets of the US and Canada, as well as project work in the UK and Latin America. The Ministry is looking to drive up onshore spend by cruise line passengers by $20 per person through an increased range of services and improved infrastructure.


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The Bahamas Investor - August News & Press

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The Central Bank of The Bahamas governor John Rolle has responded to Moody's recent rating and discusses the establishment of a credit bureau in The Bahamas. Watch an interview with Rolle here.

The lives of four local high school students are about to change for the better through scholarships to Windsor High School at Albany.

Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis was in Grand Bahama last week to meet with key stakeholders as part of his administration's efforts to reinvigorate the island's economy.

TigerWit Group, the financial technology company, has announced its subsidiary, TigerWit Financial Services Ltd, is now authorised and regulated by the Securities Commission of The Bahamas.

Moody’s Investor Services has confirmed The Bahamas’ Baa3 credit rating August 25, but has changed the outlook from stable to negative.

A team of scientists recently completed the Bahamas National Trust’s annual survey of the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park.

The 48th Annual General Assembly of the Caribbean Broadcasting Union opened August 21, 2017 at the British Colonial Hilton with the theme of the conclave heavily focused on the digital revolution in broadcasting.

The government of The Bahamas will inject almost $20 million into the capital development of the country's 39 constituencies over the next five years through its Constituency Capital Grant Programme.

The Central Bank of The Bahamas has appointed Derek Rolle as deputy governor, with effect from September 1, 2017.

As part of its ongoing commitment to transparency and accountability in advancing its mandate to the Bahamian public and the wider international community, The Central Bank of The Bahamas has been running its Stakeholders Survey 2017. Deadline for submissions is 25 August.

Ambassador of the People's Republic of China to the Commonwealth of The Bahamas Huang Qinguo made a courtesy call on Prime Minister, Dr Hubert Minnis earlier this month at the Office of the Prime Minister.

In his first address to industry stakeholders, Minister of Tourism Dionisio D’Aguilar said that he will focus on collaborative strategies to increase revenue and develop sustainable growth. Watch extracts from the address here.

The Ministry of Tourism has engaged PR firm Weber Shandwick to provide communications support in the key markets of US and Canada, as well as project work in the UK and Latin America.

Global Finance magazine has named Scotiabank as the 2017 World's Best Consumer Digital Bank in Latin America and the Caribbean, based on its strength of strategy, success in encouraging clients to use digital offerings, the growth of its digital customers and the breadth of its product offerings.

Minister of State for Grand Bahama Kwasi Thompson was joined by a number of government and Parliamentary colleagues during a tour of GB Shipyard recently.

Preliminary evidence suggests that domestic economic activity remained mildly positive during the month of June, as output in the construction sector continued to be buoyed by foreign investment projects. Read a report from the Central Bank of The Bahamas here.

Frankie Campbell, Minister of Transport and Local Government of The Bahamas, paid a courtesy call on Kitack Lim, Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization, 14 July, 2017 at the IMO Headquarters in London, UK.

A maritime attorney with a local law firm says The Bahamas is only steps away from regaining its position as one of the world’s most respected and sought after shipping registries.

Hoping to boost the profile of Grand Bahama's Port Lucaya Marketplace, the Ministry of Tourism launched its first 'Taste of Port Lucaya' event last week, inviting tourists and locals to enjoy live entertainment, sample Bahamian food and browse the marketplace's shops.

Silver Airways, which serves Florida and The Bahamas, has announced several strategic developments that will enable its continued growth.

The Caribbean Tourism Organization and the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association have presented a number of short, medium and long-term proposals to the regional leaders at their recent summit in Grenada.

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