September 16. 2011 

Harris At Large!  


What am I hearing – is it JOBS, JOBS, JOBS or POLITICS, POLITICS, POLITICS? I think I am hearing both. We are already in election mode even though no one knows whether it will be two or five months from now. However, whenever elections loom, nothing much happens in the economy. Entrepreneurs adopt a wait and see attitude but in this part of the world I am yet to see an Entrepreneur with a good project packs up and leave because he doesn’t favour the new administration. My advice to Entrepreneurs is to get on with the job of creating wealth in the economy.

 I continue to be concerned with the political stalemate in the United States of America. The two parties are divided on the issue of raising taxes. President Obama is sticking to his position in relation to raising taxes and it seems to me that he is getting support from some influential private sector and university decision makers. My concern is primarily about America’s contribution to our principal export – Tourism. If there continues to be uncertainty in the market and lack of JOBS for the poor people and middle class in the country, our tourist arrivals will definitely be affected. At the moment while there is hope in the numbers that have been shared with the public, hoteliers have got to make deep discounts to attract guests. Something has to happen very soon to prevent a serious fall out in the industry. Everything must be done to return the industry to 2006/2007 level of activity.

It is customary that during election time jobs become available due to the heightened construction activities and at this particular time, the roads and bridges damaged by hurricane Tomas must be dealt with. Beyond the next six months, government will be hard pressed to maintain those jobs and it is for that reason some incentives must be given to the private sector to open up new projects and as a result provide jobs to the unemployed. It is interesting to note that Caribbean Export is in the process of launching two support schemes, amounting to several millions of dollars. While there are some restrictions as would be expected, Consultants in the region should be busy and it is my hope that St. Lucian Consultants do not sit back and wait for a call but aggressively pursue opportunities across the region.

In many instances as assistance projects are about to end, there is a rush to find projects to support. It is time that when projects are received that all potential beneficiaries be invited to a meeting to be informed about the development and encouraged to participate. It seems as though most projects are determined by external agencies but wherever possible I feel that projects should be developed locally to respond to the special needs of the country. 

The road ahead is not easy but I feel that there are opportunities that are currently available in spite of the state of the global economy in general and that of the United States of America in particular. I am hopeful that the Congress men and women in the U.S.A. get down to serious business and restore the status of that once powerful nation which was the financial capital of the world. This brings another point to mind which frightens me – the Republicans are calling for less regulations, I hope they are not calling for a free for all like what brought the banks down with the sub-prime mortgages. Governments tend to be heavy handed with regulations especially when they are responding to serious problems but maybe what is needed is streamlining of those burdensome regulations. The oil spills in recent times and the  

issues associated with nuclear power plants have caused governments to be very cautious about the future of these two industries, and as a result have made regulations that would put a hold on any future expansion. The new salvation call of the Republicans is to open up oil and gas reserves. Drill Baby Drill!

There are definitely difficult times ahead and it will be necessary for governments everywhere to involve the people in matters of national importance.

Remember always to Keep the Faith, God is in Charge, Dream Big and expect Daily Miracles!

Edward Harris

Biblicist, Freelance Journalist, Author, Realtor, Business & PR Consultant

Email: eaharrisdestiny@gmail.com

Websites: www.stluciapropertydeals.com www.stluciasimplybeautiful.com


www.brainstorminggroup.webs.com  www.cariblist.com  St. Lucia – Agent ECREDMC

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